How to make and fold a Quillow – always a favorite with kids!

How to make and fold a Quillow – always a favorite with kids!

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Crayola Colors of Kindness Fabric from Riley Blake Designs

Is it a quilt? Is it a pillow? BOTH – it’s a Quillow!

Quillows have been around a long time and are very easy to make – I made one for my preschooler (way back in the mid-90s!) and still remember how much he loved it! In this video I’ll show you what a quillow is, how to fold a quillow and then how to sew a quillow. I’m using the Crayola® Colors of Kindness™ fabric from Riley Blake Designs – perfect if you’re going to make a quillow for a special child in your life.

If you prefer to have a printable PDF pattern, you can find it in my Etsy Shop >

JUMP TO THE VIDEO TUTORIAL | JUMP TO WRITTEN DIRECTIONS | GET AN AD-FREE PRINTABLE PDF OF THE TUTORIAL ON ETSY

 

the anatomy of a quillow:

A quillow is a quilt that has a pillow pocket – or a 2-sided, quilted square – attached to the bottom center of one side, usually the back of the quilt. Any quilt can be turned into a quillow by adding the pillow pocket. Here’s how you determine the size pocket you need for your quilt: Pocket width = 1/3 quilt width Pocket height = 1/4 quilt height Add seam allowances and you have the size fabric & batting to cut. If you are making a quillow from scratch, these are the pieces you will need:

Do you want an ad-free, printable copy of this online tutorial? Find it in my Etsy shop for just a few dollars. You won’t need to access the internet every time you want to make it.

blanket pillow for kids

BASIC SUPPLIES:

——————————————

OPTIONAL SUPPLIES:

MATERIALS NEEDED FOR A 2 FABRIC QUILLOW:

  • Fabric 1: 2 yards
    (Quilt Front & Pillow Pocket side)
    • CUT: 41” x 53”
    • CUT: 15” square
  • Fabric 2: 2 yards
    (Quilt Back & Pillow Pocket side 1)
    • CUT: 41” x 53”
    • CUT: 15” square
  • Batting of choice: 2 yards
    • CUT: 41” x 53”
    • CUT: 15” square

———————————————————————-

MATERIALS NEEDED FOR A 3 FABRIC QUILLOW:

  • Fabric 1:1½ yards
    (Quilt Front)
    • CUT: 41” x 53”
    • CUT: 15” square
  • Fabric 2: 2 yards
    (Quilt Back & Pillow Pocket side 1)
    • CUT: 41” x 53”
    • CUT: 15” square
  • Fabric 3: 15″ square
    (Pillow Pocket side 2)
    • CUT: 15” square
  • Batting of choice: 2 yards
    • CUT: 41” x 53”
    • CUT: 15” square

*Fabric 3 will only show when the quillow is folded into a pillow. You can use a contrasting fabric like I’ve done in the example or use only 2 fabrics – Fabric 1 & 2. To use 2 fabrics, you will need 2 yards of each.

🎯 SHORTCUTS TO SPECIFIC TOPICS:

00:00 introduction
00:07 What is a Quillow?
01:09 How to fold a Quillow
03:06 Quillow Supply List
03:32 How to choose quilt batting
04:20 Make the Pillow Pocket
05:06 Tips for quilting
08:17 Make the Quilt
12:10 Assemble the Quillow
14:35 Reinforce pocket corner
14:45 How to pull up your bobbin thread

HOW TO MAKE A QUILLOW

A quillow is made of 2 pieces of quilted fabric: a quilt and a square that becomes the pillow pocket. You then sew them together and have created a quillow.

MAKE THE PILLOW POCKET

Layer your pillow pocket fabrics, right sides together, on your workspace. (fig. 1)

Put a 15” square of batting on top and pin or clip together. Sew around the sides with a 1/4” seam allowance, leaving about 4-5” open for turning. (fig. 2)

Clip the corners, turn and press. Press the opening fabric in so it will be sewn together when you topstitch.

Topstitch around the outside, 1/8” from the edge.

Quilt as desired. (Don’t miss my secret for quilting parallel lines using Painter’s Tape (fig. 3) in the video at 5 mins 45 secs)

Set aside. (fig. 4)

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 1

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 2

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 3

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 4

MAKE THE QUILT

You will make the quilt in the same basic way, it’s just bigger and a little harder to manage.

Because this will be a self-bound quilt, you need the 2 fabrics and batting to be the SAME SIZE. I find the easiest way to get the batting the same size as the fabrics is to take a piece that is slightly larger, place one of the fabrics on top, face up, and trim to size. (fig. 5)

Then place the other fabric on top, face down – so the fabrics are right side together – and pin around the edges. (fig. 6)

Because of the size of the quilt and more potential for a little shifting, sew with a 1/2” seam allowance, leaving about 4-5” open for turning.

Clip the corners, turn and press.

Press the opening fabric in so it will be sewn together when you topstitch.

Topstitch around the outside, 1/8” from the edge. Quilt as desired. (fig. 7)

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 5

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 6

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 7

Do you want an ad-free, printable copy of this online tutorial? Find it in my Etsy shop for just a few dollars. You won’t need to access the internet every time you want to make it.

TIPS ABOUT BATTING

It’s important to know that not all battings are created equally. Batting can be made from different materials (100% cotton, polyester blends, etc) and require quilting at different minimum intervals (anywhere from 4″ to 10″ apart) to hold up to use and washing. Be sure you look at the manufacturer’s suggestions on the packaging and quilt accordingly.

Label your scraps so you know what the pieces are if you use a variety of batting in your projects.

SEW THE POCKET TO THE QUILT

Place your quilt on your workspace with whichever side will match the pillow pocket facing up.
Fold in half and put a mark, pin or clip at the center of the bottom edge.
Place your pillow pocket, matching fabric side up, on top of the quilt, matching the pocket center with the quilt center and clip. (fig. 8)
Pin the edges to the quilt.
Sew the sides and the bottom wide edge to the quilt (fig. 9) and reinforce the top corners by sewing back and forth or adding a triangle for extra durability. (See video tutorial at 14 mins 35 secs)

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 8

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 9

HOW TO FOLD A QUILLOW

Lay the quilt out flat, with the pillow pocket side down.

Fold one long side to the center until you see the edge of the pillow pocket. (fig. 10)

Repeat for the other side. (fig. 11)

Fold the quilt down towards the pillow pocket (fig. 12), 3 times for this size quilt, until it is folded on top of the pocket.

Turn the pocket inside out and stuff the quilt into the pocket as you turn it. (It gets easier after you’ve done it once or twice!) (fig. 13)

I usually put my hand in the pillow pocket and push out the corners when the folded quilt is about 1/2 way in – it makes it easier to get it in and organized.

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 10

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 11

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 12

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting

figure 12

how to layer pillow pocket fabric and batting
buy the quillow tutorial pdf on Etsy

Love this idea?

If you post on Instagram be sure to tag me (@artisttarareed). Follow my YouTube channel for new sewing projects and tips every week.

🧵 Tara Reed

P.S. Is there a sewing tutorial you’d love to see? Leave me a comment and I’ll add it to my idea list!

 

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