A quilted applique pillow is always fun to make, this is just a simple flower design with a neutral strip pieced background. The other day I shared several applique quilt projects that I wanted to finish up.
Applique Flower Pillow
Here is the first one! This is an oldie from my stash that was stuffed in a box of quilt blocks. The best way to use up UFOs (unfinished quilt projects) is to turn them into pillows, table toppers or mug rugs. You’ll find many tutorials for quilt projects like this on my site, just click on the tutorials tab at the top.
Can you see the different fabrics in the background of the pillow? I cut strips of two different neutral fabrics to make a strip pieced block similar to the way I made my 45 degree angle strip tube blocks. The only thing I did differently was to use 1½-inch and 2½-inch strips.
I still love using my vintage 15-91 Singer sewing machine for all of my piecing and quilting. Even though it is only a straight stitch sewing machine, I was able to do a type of free-motion zig-zag to applique my flower. This sewing machine is 69 years old and I have been using it for 29 years after buying it at a farm auction. This workhorse can go through everything!
Normally I use a 50 wt thread for my quilting but I decided to try a 28 wt Aurifil thread that I received when I was an Aurifil ambassador. It is a thicker thread and the stitches really show up.
If you use it for quilting, be sure and switch back to your regular weight thread before piecing as this is too thick for your seams.
It is always so much fun to reach this step! The block is all quilted and trimmed. Now it is ready for a backing. I’ve been moving things around in my quilt room again.
Flannel Design Wall
Have you ever used a flannel backed tablecloth for a design wall? It works great! I first bought a cheap picnic tablecloth that said it was flannel backed from Walmart but it was too thin. You’ll want to buy a heavy-duty flannel backed vinyl tablecloth. Mine had been folded up for some time so I dampened a wash cloth and then put it and the table cloth in my dryer on a low heat for a few minutes to get the folds out of it.
It isn’t always necessary to use the same fabric on the back of your pillow. I have this gold/silver print in my stash and like the way it coordinates with the neutral strips on the front of my pillow. I happened to have an old mustard gold zipper and used that.
Here is a better photo of the free-motion applique that I did on the flower. I originally planned on doing some straight line quilting on the background but I forgot and started doing a stipple design.
After I was all done I realized that you could barely see the strips of fabric in the background so I tried stitching around each strips. I went around two times but it really doesn’t show up that well.
I made this block for a contest that Accuquilt had one year. I didn’t win but had fun making the block using my Accuquilt dies. I used the GO! Round Flower die and the GO! Flower Bunch die for the applique. the background was made using the GO! Strip Cutter die that cuts 1-inch, 1½-inch, and 2-inch strips at once.
I still think this Morning Glory pillow is too plain, I think a free-motion stitched flower using teal thread would look great, what do you think?
I now have another pillow to add to my collection. I can now mark this project done and will be choosing another one of my applique quilt projects to work on.
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