Goodwill Pillow Makeover


We are slowly redecorating our house.  After years of a couch I hated and a couple of recliners that looked REALLY worn, we sold the couch and bought a dark brown sectional.  I immediately knew we needed some very big pillows to give the sectional some color.  I also wanted to incorporate some southwest themes (we do live in Arizona after all).

Pillows can be very expensive and if you know how to sew even a little, you can make your own pillows.  I started with four very large (24") tapestry pillows and two more 18" pillows - all found at Goodwill.

They had a heavy tapestry cover and thick piping.  It doesn't matter how they looked on the outside because I knew I was going to cut off the cover.  I also quickly gave up on the idea of reusing the thick piping.  Once I cut the cover off, this is what was left:

Admittedly, this was pretty grungy looking, but a lot of pillows look like this.  The idea upcycling pillows sounds a little gross, especially after a global pandemic.  I found a way to solve both problems.  

While at Goodwill, I found a couple of sets of nice white sheets.  I washed them in bleach and hot water and cut them to make permanent pillow covers for each pillow.  That allows me to remove and clean the pillow covers or just make new ones without having to reassemble the pillow from loose stuffing. 

While I was washing the sheets and sewing the pillow covers, I sprayed these pillow forms with a mixture of bleach and water and put them in the sun to dry.  Between the bleach and the pillow covers, I am confident the pillows are clean.

I found these home decorating fabrics at a discount fabric store, SAS.  They were about half the price of home decorating fabrics at JoAnns or Hobby Lobby.  Knowing your local discount or wholesale fabric store is definitely a pro tip for DIY home decorating.

I used my Envelope Pillow Pattern to make each pillow.  This makes removing them for cleaning very convenient.  Even those the pillow covers are larger than I've made in the past, I couldn't be more pleased with the results.

I think this living room project is off to a strong start.



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