Old clothes + needle and thread = a new pillow: Barbara Zarestky, Amanda Carestio and quilting artist Benares Finan-Eshelman give you the step-by-step.

Author:Zarestky, Barbara
Position:Hands on
 
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The New Year likely brought with it promises to get rid of something old--be it a habit, a way of thinking, or some unwanted clothes taking up space in your closet (since, sadly, parachute pants have not made the comeback you were hoping for). And, with 2008 has come a chance to try something new, like picking up sewing. This simple quilting pillow project combines both resolutions and is sure to add color and a creative spark to your home this winter--in an eco-friendly fashion, of course!

We'll show you how to craft a simple quilted pillow coverlet out of used, but not used up, clothes and fabrics. These types of projects also offer an easy way to incorporate organic and sustainable materials into your work. If you don't have an old pillow or other cloth to use as filling, try using natural or organic cotton for stuffing.

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MATERIALS:

You'll need enough fabric (your recycled clothes or old drapes, etc.) to cover the front and back of the pillow. This can be an existing pillow you choose to cover, or you can create your own. If creating the pillow, you'll need stuffing (a pillow insert, other cloth, or store-bought batting). You won't need a closure, since the pillow cover works as a kind of envelope, but if you'd like an extra decorative touch, try adding a zipper or buttons.

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Cut your fabric into pieces and lay them out on a flat surface so they measure the same height as your pillow and approximately twice the width. Be sure to leave a few inches for overlap and an inch extra on each side for the seam allowance.

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