Teddy Pillow & Quilt + tutorial {Cushion for Christmas blog hop}

Hello everyone! Welcome to day five of the Ms Midge Cushion for Christmas blog hop! I’m glad to be a part of this fun Christmas project, and I hope you like the little gift set I have for you today.

Ms Midge
I decided to make my cushion a small teddy/dolls pillow, and as an added bonus, a matching mini quilt, to make a cute little set that would be perfect to gift to the small person in your life. This is quite a quick little combo to whip up in an afternoon, and is also great for scrap busting if you pick wisely, making it a great stocking stuffer, or last minute gift for little friends.

You will need three fabrics – one for the triangles of the geese (the print I have used), one for the background of the geese (the white), and one for the main body of the pillow and quilt. I have based my cutting instructions off this easy and quick no-waste flying geese tutorial that I pinned ages ago, but I have also included alternative cutting instructions for those who are using scraps not large enough to yield the bigger squares.

CUTTING GUIDE (makes both pillow and quilt):
From your geese print, cut 3 squares at 4.25″ (if you are using scraps and will be making your geese individually, you will need 12 pieces 3.5″ x 2″)
From your background fabric (where I have used white), cut 12 squares at 2 3/8″ (if you are using small scraps and will be making your geese individually, you will need 24 squares at 2″)
From your body fabric (where I have used grey), cut:
1 – 6.5″ x 2″
1 – 6.5″ x 3.5″
1 – 6.5″ x 8″
2 – 3.5″ squares
1 – 9.5″ x 1.5″
1 – 9.5″ x 3″
1 – 9.5″ x 4″
1 – 11″ x 14.5″ (this will be your backing, so you can choose a different fabric or even piece it if you want. For speed and simplicity I used a single piece of body fabric)
For binding your quilt – a 2.5″ strip approximately 50″ long (will require joins)
Batting for quilt – 11″x 14.5″
Polyfill for stuffing pillow

From your geese print, cut 1 square at 4.25″ (or four rectangles at 3.5″ x 2″)
From your background fabric (where I have used white) cut 4 squares atย  2 3/8″ (or 8 squares at 2″)
From your body fabric (where I have used grey) cut:
1 – 6.5″ x 2″
1 – 6.5″ x 3.5″
1 – 6.5″ x 8″
Also required – polyfill to stuff the cushion with.

(please note – I am working based on the no waste flying geese tutorial. If you are using scraps and making your geese individually, substitute the appropriate steps. Not sure how to make geese individually? Check out the “Speed Piecing Method A” section of this tutorial.)

For speed, we will be making the geese for the pillow and the quilt at the same time. Mark your small squares as shown in step two of the no waste tutorial. Lay all three large squares right side up next to your sewing area, and lay out the smaller squares as per step three. Sew the two seams on ALL THREE, and cut then press all three. Lay your six pieces you created here right side up next to your sewing area, and lay out the smaller squares as shown in the tutorial, step 7. Sew the two seams on all six pieces. Cut and press open for all. Now you should have 12 completed flying geese units – how fast and quick was that! (If you are making the pillow only, you will end up with four geese from one large starting square).

Once you have all 12 geese made and pressed, lay them out in three columns of four geese, with the point of one triangle pointing to the bottom of the triangle above. Pair the geese up, right sides together, and join each pair with a 1/4″ seam. Do not press yet. Take your six small pairs and, right sides together, create three larger pairs. Join with a 1/4″ seam. Now press all three rows of flying geese. Your geese are ready to fly! By doing each step for all pieces at the same time, it makes the process very quick. (If you are only making the pillow, you will end up with one row of four geese).


On your work surface, lay out one of the strips of four geese. Using the 6.5″ x 2″ and 6.5″ x 3.5″ pieces of your main body fabric, play around with the direction of your geese, and which side they will go. I chose to have my geese flying up, and on the right hand side of the pillow, but it’s personal preference. Join the two body colour strips to each side of the geese strip, and press.blog-8729-002e
Lay this piece on your work surface, then lay the 6.5″ x 8″ piece on top, right side down. Pin, and sew around the outside with a 1/4″ seam, leaving a 2.5″ (approx) gap in middle of one long edge to allow for turning. I found this tutorial via Pinterest that is very useful for creating nice sharp corners. Otherwise, trim the corners and turn right side out, and press.


You can then stuff the cushion with polyfill – or if you are a tightwad scrap buster like me, pull apart some scrap batting. Be sure to stuff small amounts right into the corners before filling the main part of the pillow.ย  I chose to leave my pillow reasonably flat – we don’t want teddy getting a crinked neck, now, do we? But it’s all personal preference, so stuff away until you are happy with the fatness of your pillow. Once it has reached your desired level of fullness, handsew the opening shut with a blind/ladder stitch (not sure how? Check out this handy tutorial!).

The pillow is now done!



Lay out your two remaining geese strips, the 2 3.5″ squares of body fabric and the three 9.5″ wide strips of body fabric as shown:


Join the geese strips to the 3.5″ squares using a 1/4″ seam – the square should attach to the pointy end of a goose. This will then yield 5 strips at 9.5″ long. Sew these pieces together using a 1/4″ seam – sew all four seams before pressing. I started each seam on the same edge of the work, so that if there were any minor variances in the pieces, one edge would be straight to start with when I came to squaring up time.

Once pressed, lay your 11″ x 14.5″ piece of backing fabric wrong side up on your work surface, ensuring it is perfectly flat. Lay your batting on top, making sure it is reasonably closely aligned to the backing. Then take your pieced quilt top, and place it in the centre of the batting, right side up, gently smoothing it to ensure it is flat. Once all three layers are together, baste using your preferred method – for such a small piece, I simply pinned with normal dressmakers pins.


Then it’s just a matter of quilting as you would like. I chose to do straightish lines, inspired by the dolls quilt Helen made for me in a previous swap. I didn’t mark the lines, just went by eye as I wasn’t concerned about them being perfectly straight. It is one continuous line, when I got to the edge, I stopped near the edge of the fabric, pivoted, and stitched parallel to the edge before pivoting again and coming back. I was working on each line being roughly 1/4″ from the edge of the walking foot as I stitched the next line. I did have plans to also quilt around the geese, but I quite liked them without the quilting. Plus it also helps for the time factor. But how you quilt yours is a matter of preference!

Once it was quilted, I then squared it up with my rotary cutter and ruler – after quilting it had shrunk slightly, and so the final trimmed size was 9.25″ by 12.75″. Then it’s just a matter of binding it! I normally always stitch my binding down by hand, but in this case speed was of the essence (both in the spirit of the guidelines, and in the need to actually get it done before the baby woke up!). I used a scrappy binding as I was just a bit short on the print, so I used it’s co-ordinating print to bring my binding up to length.Once I had attached it to the front of the quilt as per normal with a 1/4″ seam, I turned it towards the back, and ensuring it went a good way over the seam, pinned it in place from the front, and then used my zipper foot to stitch in the ditch right next to the binding on the front. And while not as neat as a hand stitched binding, I was happy with the result!


{squared up and auditioning binding options}

All up, I guess this little project took maybe three hours? Including calculating sizes, as well as being stop-start due to small people, so losing time in picking it up again and remembering where I was up to! It was quite quick, and all the materials were from my stash, so it’s all kinds of win!

The finished quilt (which, looking at it side on like that, would make a nice quilted placemat too!):


And the pillow:


And of course, it required a road test! So making sure Miss Butterfly was otherwise occupied, I kidnapped Molly Mouse, who was quite impressed with the snuggly factor. So much so she couldn’t wait to get alllll the way to the toyroom to test it out, and required a little kip in the hallway:


But after I shook her a few times and insisted the timber floor likely wasn’t the most comfortable place to have a sleep, she woke up and joined me in the toyroom, where she really snuggled in.blog-8767-002e

I’m really happy with how it turned out – I’m adding this one to Butterfly’s Christmas present I think! I’d love to see your take on this teddy pillow and quilt set.

totallypinspiredsmallThis is project number five & six (two of at least two in December) in my “totally pinspired” challenge to turn my pins into projects. We are aiming to complete a minimum of two pins a month. For all my Totally Pinspired projects, click here. You can find my Pinterest boards here, and my completed pins board here. If you’ve been totally pinspired as well, I’d love to see what you’ve been making!


Opening :: -25.5FQs

Out :: – 1.5FQs (approx)

Closing :: -27FQs

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