A Little Crafty... Heart-in-Hand Pillow

by Somer
Sometimes I feel like my kids are growing up too fast. As we were crossing the street the other day, I took my littlest's hand and was surprised by how big he is getting. I decided to make a memento of just how small they are now; something I can look at as a reminder of the days of fingerprints on the windows and crayons on the walls.

The Heart-in-Hand is used in many cultures to symbolize love, kindness, friendship, charity, and service, all things I hope to teach my children. So it seemed an appropriate reminder of where we are in our lives.
Click "Read More" below for detailed directions!
For a 16" x 16" pillow, start with: card stock, 1 yard unbleached muslin, 2 yards piping, acrylic paint to match piping, foam brush, freezer paper, pillow form, and a heart cookie cutter. If you want to embroider on the pillow: embroidery floss, needle, hoop, and 17" square of fusible fleece.
From the muslin, cut out your pillow pieces. You want two pieces 1" longer than the size of your pillow for the front, and two pieces 1" longer than the height x 4" longer than half the width for the back. For instance, my pillow is 16" x 16", so I need two pieces 17" x 17" and two pieces 17" x 12". From the fusible fleece cut one piece the same size as the front of the pillow. If you don't have a serger you may want to cut out your pieces with pinking shears or zig zag around the edges.

Trace your little person's hand on card stock, label it with their name, and cut it out.
Freezer paper has a shiny side and a dull side. The shiny side is coated with plastic and will temporarily stick to fabric when ironed in place.  Cut a piece of freezer paper the size of your pillow and arrange your hands on the paper. On the dull side of the paper, trace around your hands. (For fewer kids you may want to change the size of your pillow, two or three hands would look great on a rectangular pillow. You could also try a triangle or have them write their names alongside their hand.)
Carefully cut out the hands. Use a cookie cutter to trace hearts and cut them from freezer paper to place in the middle of hands.
Iron freezer paper, shiny side down, to one of the front pillow pieces. Make sure the freezer paper is fused all around the outline of hands. Center hearts inside of hands and iron in place.
Using a foam brush, completely cover exposed area of fabric with paint. I mixed a little textile medium with my paint because I had it, but I have never been able to get paint out when I was trying, so I really don't know if its necessary. Once the paint is dry, peel away the freezer paper. You may want to set the paint by placing a piece of muslin over the hands and ironing over the hands, it should set the paint permanently.
To embroider kids names below their hands, use a pencil to lightly write names in place. I think it would be fun to have your kids write their names instead, but mine were already asleep.  

Fusible fleece has a soft side and a rough side, the rough side is glue that activates with heat. (Later we will adhere the painted top to the other piece of muslin so that the inside of the pillow is more finished.)  You want the soft side to be facing the wrong (not pretty) side of the painted pillow top, now hoop around where you want to embroider. Using two strands of embroidery floss, back stitch names in place.
Without ironing directly on the painted hands, iron second piece of muslin to back of pillow top.  The rough side of the fusible fleece will melt and fuse the two pieces together.  If you don't want embroidery, just pin the two muslin pieces together when you baste the piping.

Now, with two back pieces, fold one long side (17") of each piece over 1/2" and then again 1" and press in place. 
Sew 3/4" from pressed edge on each back piece. I used contrasting thread so you could see it.
Pin piping to top sandwich, rounded edge of piping should be facing away from raw edge of fabric. At corners make a small cut about 1/2" - 1/4" from edge, being sure not to cut through decorative edge.
Overlap ends, tapering each.With longest stitch length, baste piping to top.
Pin pillow back pieces to pillow front, overlapping sewn edges in middle. Pin all around the edges.
Following basting stitch (from when you basted the piping) as a guide, sew pillow together.
Clip corners and finish edges with a serger. If you pinked your pieces that should prevent them from fraying, the piping has a finished edge already and won't fray.
Turn right side out and stuff with pillow form. Wash with care if needed and to protect your iron never iron directly on the painted surface.


Sarah said...

LOVE this!

Jocelyn Christensen said...

I love it...This would make a great Valentine's Day gift!

Evan C. said...

I agree, Jocelyn. I was thinking it would make a good Mother's Day present for a grandma too.

Mary DK said...

I love this! I definitely have to try making one.

Amanda said...

I featured this today - Today's Top 20!

Woo Hoo!

Notyouraveragehomeschoolmom said...

We are definitely going to be doing this for our Grammy and Nana this mother's day! Thank you!

Anna said...

Love this! Llinked to it from my blog post on Valentine's Day.

Anonymous said...

this is super cute!!! i'm gonna try to make one for my husband!!! with our baby's hand... i think is just too cute! love it!!! actually all your work is very cute! God bless you!


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