Travel Memories Pillow

Travel Memories Pillow

Crafting Time:
  • Varies
Skill Level:
  • Advanced
Project Courtesy of: Tim Holtz
Print Project Description Add to Project List

Additional Information



  • Tim Holtz® Eclectic Elements:
    1 yard ticking, blue fabric for pillow back and cording
    5/8 yard Travel Labels, Taupe fabric for pillow front
    1/2 yard French Script, Neutral fabric for pillow front
    1/2 yard Timepieces, Neutral fabric for pillow
  • 2 1/2 yards 1/2" cording
  • June Tailor Colorfast Sew-in Printable fabric sheets
  • Tim Holtz® Idea-ology (we used the following):
    Accoutrements Button Vintage Metal
    Compass Coins TH93061
    Corners Metal Hardware
    Word Bands
    Word Keys
  • Coats & Clark® Dual Duty XP®:
    All-purpose thread:
    Variegated thread color for decorative stitching
  • 18" Soft-Touch pillow insert by Fairfield
  • 16" Polyester all-purpose zipper to match
  • Variety of six-strand embroidery floss
  • Pattern tracing paper or freezer paper
  • Ruler/straight edge
  • Pencil
  • Basic sewing supplies
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron and pressing surface
  • Hot glue gun
  • 18" cardboard square


Note: seam allowance is 1/2" unless otherwise noted.
For Pillow Front:
1. To make a pattern for the pillow front, draw an 18" square on paper.
2. Draw a diagonal line connecting opposite corners to the other, splitting the square in half.
3. Draw a second line, dividing one of the halves into quarters. Mark a notch on the marked line to indicate this will be the seam line
4 Cut out along all marked lines.
5. Tape pieces to a new piece of pattern or paper. Add a 1/2" seam allowance to all edges of the pillow front pieces. Extend notch to the new line. The new lines will be your cutting lines
6. Cut one pillow front piece from each pattern piece – use a different fabric for each piece. Cut out or mark notches

For Pillow Back:
1. Cut a piece of fabric 19"x21".

1.Cut a bias strip of fabric 2-1/2"x2-1/2 yards. (Note: fabric may need to be pieced for required length.)

Preparing the Image:
1. Select image of your choice for pillow. Enlarge photo/ postcard/ vintage image to approximately 6"x9".
2. Print image on printable fabric, following manufacturer’s directions (Note: be sure to follow directions for making the image colorfast.)
3. Cut a rectangle of fabric, 1" larger than your image. Center the image on the fabric rectangle and stitch in place with a narrow zigzag stitch. You will be creating an image with a 1/2" fabric border.

Preparing the Piping:
1. Sew bias strips together along short ends to create one long length. Press seams open
2. Place bias strip on flat surface, right side down.
3. Place cording in the center of the strip and encase cording in fabric, by folding fabric around cord, and matching raw edges (be sure to keep cording centered)
4. Using a zipper foot, sew fabric in place as close to cord as possible.

Pillow Front:
1. Pin the two 1/4 pillow front pieces with right sides together along the notched edge. Stitch with a 1/2" seam allowance. Press seam open.
2. Pin the remaining pillow front piece and the stitched piece with right sides together. Stitch with a 1/2" seam allowance, and press seam open.
3. Embellish seams using variegated thread and the decorative stitch of choice
4. Lay the pillow front right side up on a flat surface, positioning it so the 2 fabric triangles are on the left and the larger triangle is on the right.
5. Place the prepared image piece on the pillow front, about 3" up and 3" in from the lower right hand corner. Pin in place and top-stitch 1/4" from the image, on the fabric border.

Applying the Piping:
1. Place pillow front right side up on a flat surface.
2. Beginning and the center of the lower edge, pin the cording in place with raw edges even. Clip the cording up to but not through the stitching, to ease it around the corners.
3. Baste piping in place, using a zipper foot and stitching as close to the cording as possible. Begin and end 2" from the cut end of the cord.
4. Use the seam ripper to open one end of the piping fabric to exposed the cording. Fold the fabric back.
5. Trim the cording so that the two ends butt up against each other.
6. Turn under 1/2" on the open end of the fabric. Re-cover the cord, encasing both ends of the cord in the fabric. Make sure the raw edges are even. Stitch the remaining piping area in place.

Pillow Back:
1. To insert a zipper 1-1/2" up from the lower edge of the pillow place the pillow back right side down on a flat surface, with the 19" edges at the top and the bottom and the longer edges on the left and right.
2. Measure up 2-1/2" inches from the bottom edge (1-1/2" plus 1" seam allowance – a larger seam allowance will be used to make it easier to sew in the zipper) and mark a line. Cut along the marked line.
3. Place the fabric strip just cut and the lower edge of the pillow with right sides together along the long edge. Measure and mark a point 2" in from each side edge of the pillow.
4. Stitch in place, using a normal stitch length from the side edges to the marking, and a basting stitch in between the markings.
5. Press seam open.
6. Insert a lapped zipper, following the directions on the zipper package.

Assembling the Pillow:
1. Place the pillow front and back with right sides together and raw edges even. The pillow front should be on the top. Pin in place along all edges.
2. Stitch around all edges of the pillow using a zipper foot. Stitch so that the stitch falls just to the left of the piping basting stitches. This will prevent the basting from showing on the outside of the pillow.
3. Trim the corners.
4. Turn pillow right side out and press.

Embellishing the Pillow:
1. Insert a piece of cardboard inside the pillow.
2. Apply Tim Holtz® Idea-ology® embellishments as desired on the front of the pillow using hot glue or embroidery floss.
3. For use of Corners, flatten the back of the corner piece, and attach with hot glue.

1. Remove cardboard
2. Insert pillow form.