We provide a pattern download that gives you the perfect wedge shape to create the pinwheel design of this pillow. You can easily cut two wedges from each 10" x 10" Layer Cake square, which means you'll use just six Layer Cake squares for this project. Or... spread your creativity around to friends and family, and make SEVEN pretty pillows from the 42 squares in a standard Layer Cake pack. I'd say that's quite enough for a grand scale pillow fight.
All of our Fresh Linens projects started out with pre-cuts, thanks to our friends at Moda Fabrics who provided us with a full set of all the pre-cuts available for Joanna Figueroa's beautiful Fresh Cottons collection.
This collection of fabric has a softly nostalgic feel, but there's nothing old-fashioned about it. That's one of the magical things about Joanna's designs; she pulls in wonderfully vintage themes and colors but the result is never dowdy or out-of date. In fact, they are always new and fresh and fun. To learn more about Fresh Cottons, pre-cuts and our nine Fresh Linens bedroom projects, read our article, Fresh Linens Liven up a Guest Bedroom with Crisp, Comfy Color.
Sewing Tools You Need
- Any Sewing Machine (we recommend the Janome 3160QDC)
- ¼" foot (optional)
- Zipper foot - narrow base or regular
Fabric and Other Supplies
- Layer Cake Pack (we used just six 10" x 10" squares from the standard 42-piece pack; if you choose not to use a Layer Cake, you'll need to cut six 10" x 10" squares): we used Joanna's Figueroa's Fresh Cottons Layer Cake by Fig Tree Quilts for Moda Fabrics
- Jelly Roll (we used one 2½" x 44" jelly roll strip from the standard 40-piece pack; if you choose not to use a Jelly Roll, you'll need to cut one 2½" x 44" strip): we used Joanna Figueroa's Fresh Cottons Jelly Roll by Fig Tree Quilts for Moda Fabrics
- All purpose thread to match fabrics
- Button or carpet thread (optional, for sewing on buttons)
- See-through ruler
- Iron and ironing board
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Straight pins
- Tape measure
- See-through ruler
- 1 yard of ¼" cotton cording
- 1½” covered button kit (you'll need two buttons, most kits come with 3 or more)
- Hand sewing needle
- Curved needle (optional, for sewing on buttons)
- Tracing paper, pattern paper or template plastic
- One small bag of Fairfield Poly-fil fiberfill
- Download and print our Wedge Pattern.
IMPORTANT: This pattern is ONE 8.5" x 11" sheet. You must print the PDF file at 100%. DO NOT SCALE to fit the page.
- Cut out the wedge pattern and trace it onto pattern paper or plastic template. Remember to mark the grainline.
- Using your pattern paper/plastic template wedge pattern, cut out two wedge shapes from each Layer Cake 10" x 10" square for a total of 12 wedges. Be sure to watch the direction of your fabric. Your pieces will have some stretch to them, so handle each one with care to retain its shape.
NOTE: You can trace the pattern on the wrong side of each Layer Cake square, or you can make two patterns to make your cutting go faster.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
- Arrange your layout for the pillow so you have four sets of three wedges. This is how you will sew them together. The front and back of our pillow is identical, which was the most efficient use of the Layer Cake squares. If you're not worried about fabric waste, you could select up to 12 different fabrics. Again, remember to handle the pieces with care due to the bias stretch.
- Select two wedge shapes from your first set of three. Place them right sides together. Pin along one side.
- Using a ¼" seam allowance, sew the pie shapes together along one side. Press seam open.
NOTE: Since Janome is our signature sponsor, we have the pleasure of using their wonderful machines in our studios. For this project, we used the their ¼" foot. It enabled us to keep our seams even, which is important with this type of precision-matching project.
- Select two wedge shapes from your second set of three. Align, pin and stitch as described above. Press seam open.
- In the same manner, sew the third wedge shape, from the first set, onto the first pair. Press the seam open.
- And... you guessed it... sew the third wedge shape, from the second set, onto the second pair.
- Now, sew each side together down the center to complete the circle shape.
- Repeat for remaining two sets of wedge shapes to create the circle for the opposite side of the pillow.
- If this is your first time making piping, see our tutorial, How To Make And Attach Your Own Piping.
- Fold and press the jelly roll strip in half lengthwise, wrong sides together.
- Unfold and strip and place the cotton cording along the pressed fold.
- Wrap the fabric around the cord. Pin close to the cording to hold it in place.
- Using a zipper foot, sew close to the cording to create your fabric covered piping.
NOTE: If your sewing machine allows, move the needle all the way to the left. Or, use a narrow base zipper foot so you can get nice and tight against the cording.
- Trim the flange (this is the fabric portion that is flat) on the cording to ½".
- Cut a slit into the flange of the piping every 1" or so. This will help it to bend nicely around the circular shape of the pillow. Be sure not to cut into your stitching.
- Hand baste the piping onto one side of the pillow, aligning the raw edges and easing around the circle. Cut back the piping cord to match and overlap to join. Again, if you're new to attaching piping, check out our tutorial for tips on joining and finishing.
- Layer front and back right sides together, matching the seams as you go around. Your piping will be sandwiched in between the layers.
- Using a ½" seam allowance and your zipper foot, sew around the pillow, leaving an opening for turning and stuffing. If you sew with the side of the pillow to which the piping was original basted on top, you can use your basting as a guide to help you stay nice and close to the piping. The zipper foot will also help you keep a tight line of stitching.
- Turn the pillow right side out.
- Cover buttons with coordinating fabric scraps - we used the leftover fabric from cutting out the wedges. If you are new to covering buttons, we have two tutorials, one using Covered Button Kits (what we did here) and one about Making Your Own.
- Stuff the pillow with fiber fill through the opening.
- Thread a hand sewing needle with button or carpet thread. Hand sew one covered button to the pillow front and one to the back. Pull the buttons tight so they create a nice, tufted effect.
- Slip stitch the opening closed.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Jodi Kelly
Other machines suitable for this project include the Singer 7469 Confidence Quilter and the Husqvarna Viking Emerald 203.