Friday, September 21, 2012

Flying Moustaches!

I've been really into making pillows lately.  They're relatively quick and easy (I'm a fan of [semi-] instant gratification), and they allow me to improve my sewing/quilting skills on a smaller scale item.  And I love this pillow.  I sort of want to keep it, but I'll be good and give it to the intended recipient.

I found a fat quarter of this mustache fabric at my (somewhat) LQS, and just had to get it. (I have no clue who the designer, manufacturer is.  There's no info on the selvage and I couldn't find anything online.  Lots of photos of the fabric, but no info - Update: It's Where's My Stash by Alexander Henry Fabrics.).  I had no idea what I was going to do with it, but my friends and I have always had this strange thing about mustaches, so I didn't really have a choice but to buy it.  After thinking about it and staring at the fabric, I decided it would make the perfect pillow for my friend LC and her husband.  They're awesome, and fun, and a bit quirky (they bought lamps from the kids department at Target to decorate their bedroom), so a mustache pillow is right up their alley. Also, they got married a year and a half ago in a very small, family-only ceremony, and I never really got them a gift.  Since Mr. T and I are visiting this weekend, I decided it was the perfect time!

For this pillow I also tried a few new things:
1) Added a zipper covered by a flap - this is actually the 3rd zipper I've added to a pillow, but I haven't finished the other two yet, so it's the first completed pillow with a zipper.  I used this tutorial, which I thought explained it really well.  Also, rather than use a narrow cut of fabric to make the flap, I just folded the larger backing piece down.  I think it worked out pretty well.

Excuse the lint.  I did find and use my roller, but apparently I missed a few spots.

2) Piping! - I was pretty nervous about adding piping, but I think it turned out pretty well.  There is definitely some room for improvement, but for my first try, I'm pleased.  Again, I used a tutorial from Sew Mama Sew's website. I thought there were a few areas in which this tutorial could have provided a little more detail, particularly concerning what type of cording to buy (maybe naming some common brands), and also more clarification concerning when to sew to the right and wrong sides of the fabric.  I was halfway through pinning my piping to the wrong side of my pillow top before realizing that I should be pinning to the right side.  As a new sewer, extra details like that are often helpful, but often overlooked by those who have been sewing for a long time.

Even though the tutorial recommends bias cutting the strips to cover cording, I decided to cut along the grain.  Every time I've tried to cut on the bias, I've messed up, so I just decided not to do it.  Also, as I don't have a piping foot, I just used my zipper foot.  I can definitely see how a piping foot would be handy.  I couldn't quite get as close as I wanted to the piping, and then when I sewed the top and bottom together, I definitely got too far away, so you can see threads from the piping covering coming out.  Oh well, it's little touches like these that make it homemade and special!

I was planning on making the entire backing black, but after adding the zipper it was an inch too short.  I added the leftover strip from the fat quarter to add some length and I have to say, I'm really pleased with the result.  It adds an element of surprise and intrigue to the back.  I love that!

Mr. T and I also decided to have some fun with this one...

He wishes he could have a mustache for real, but I won't allow it.  A full facial hair set is fine (even preferred), but mustaches on their own are often creepy.  Especially on Mr. T...


  1. Cute fabric. It's called "Where's My Stash" by Alexander Henry Fabrics.

  2. Alexander Henry the designer I just discovered on Pinterest and there are tons of fun designs. Nice pillow design. I want to learn some of your techniques, my sewing skills need a lot of improvement.