January 6, 2013

Pretty Kitty Pillow Tutorial

I've been seeing a number of animal-shaped pillows lately and I made a very small one for a friend but I really wanted them to be larger so I tried a new "helper" from the web called BlockPosters.  It is a free site that lets you print out your image on multiple sheets that can go through your printer and then reassembled into a larger "poster".

I swear by Lesley Riley TAP paper as the BEST transfer media for fabric and I am very stingy with it. Two sheets are required to make this pillow that stands 16" tall and 12"at the widest point. I had to commit to two full sheets since with BlockPosters I couldn't sneak in small images around the edges of the sheet as I usually do.

My adorable kitty image is from the ever-popular GRAPHICS FAIRY. She has this great little empty sign hanging around her neck just waiting for you to fill in whatever you would like. Without much thought, MILK PLEASE just popped into my head due to the sweet pleading look in her eyes. HER eyes because she is wearing a pink ribbon?? 


Here are the two printed transfer sheets.
I like to trim off as much extra white as possible because the blank area will transfer a slight translucent visible area on the fabric. Below is the top half of kitty all trimmed out.
Both halves are now trimmed and ready to go. They are face down on my fabric on my ironing board but awaiting one last touch. I need to insert the text on her little sign. (Forgot to photo that.)

At this point, I have ironed and peeled back the top sheet of transfer paper as well as the separate  piece containing the text (REMEMBER: all text must be printed in reverse!)


Now I peel back the bottom half. Lesley Riley TAP paper is a dream to work with. It does not require heavy and extended ironing. Just make sure your iron is HOT and the transfer will usually begin to separate from the fabric on its own. Lift an edge and slowly peel. If it doeasn't pull back easily just reapply the hot iron to the transfer for a moment and then try again. You can keep reapplying the heat as needed.

Now trim around kitty leaving a seam allowance and a border of an inch or two to give it some dimension and cut a backing piece to match. Pin and sew leaving a small opening in the lower edge for stuffing.
Then sew up the opening by hand or machine. I prefer hand sewing for an invisible stitch.
And here she sits on a newly covered cushion on my really shabby chic rocker that may be a blog topic in the future.

If you love this little guy but would rather have one made for you, stop over to my Etsy shop where I am taking orders. Take me there!

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