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crafty crafty:
make a 
olster pillow

by Yee-Fan Sun |
1 2 3

My boy has never quite understood my pillow obsession. Why bury a bed under an excess of pillows whose only purpose, as far as he’s concerned, seems to be to get in the way when you’re trying to climb under the covers at the end of the day?  It’s not that he doesn’t get the comfort thing; it’s just that the line between “enough-to-be-comfy” and “too damn many to ever use” lies a little closer to “a couple” in his mind, and “until I get tired of making them” in mine. So it was with some surprise when, after our honeymoon in Morocco, he started bugging me about wanting one of “those Morocco pillows.”

“What Morocco pillows?” I asked, since my only recollection of Moroccan pillows was that they’d had a tendency to be upholstered in outrageously sumptuous fabrics that, besides being beyond my usual cheapskate’s craft budget, just didn’t quite go with the 60s space-age orb lamps and vaguely mid-century modern/thrift-store kitsch look that generally defines our décor.

“You know, those skinny cylinder-shaped ones …” he insisted.

Ah, bolster pillows. Now, bolster pillows have never featured high on my list of “things I MUST have in my abode” – they’ve always seemed more decorative to me than actually useful, and perhaps more importantly, I’m enough of a sewing hack that the idea of covering anything more complicated than a simple rectangle has always seemed, well, just a tad beyond my very meager abilities. But, marriage, after all, is about compromise, and I figure if he can indulge my needs for a gazillion tiny throw pillows strewn about the bed, I can allow him a bolster pillow or two.

So, I sat down one afternoon and tried to figure out the easiest way to make a bolster pillow cover.  I didn’t want to fuss with zippers, nor did I relish wrestling with pesky circles or curved seams. I wanted fast, I wanted easy; I wanted something that wasn’t going to leave me cursing at my sewing machine in frustration. Which is how I came up with this pattern, which makes a simple rectangular/cylindrical cover with openings on either side that can be cinched shut with drawstrings.

what you’ll need
bolster pillow form (firmer) or roll of quilt batting (cheaper)
fabric to cover the pillow
cord or ribbon to use for drawstrings
thread to match the fabric
tape measure
colored pencil that’ll show up on your fabric
sewing machine
skinny knitting needle, wire coat hanger, or some other device for threading drawstrings

an hour or so

keep on wandering this way

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