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Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials

Photos and instructions for these beautiful pillow cases have been emailed to us by Beth Maitland Banninger. Beth, thank you for the awesome project! And here are a few words from project author, and a very detailed instruction explaining each step:

This is a really fun project and fabrics can be changed to be formal, fun, or funky! I made these for my niece (in nursing school) and nephew (new dog owner) with cheeky fabrics to compliment their interests. So many wonderful specialty fabrics are available at your local quilt shop or calico department in larger fabric stores. Let your imagination... and the interests of the person who will receive this gift... lead the way to the right fabrics and colors. And you can make several at one time... they literally only require three seams! Even though Venice Initials are formal, they are so gorgeous and contrast nicely with my fun theme fabrics.

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - brown

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - brown

You will need:

1 - 3/4 yard of solid color cotton calico fabric for body of pillowcase...minimum 42" wide
2 - 1/3 yard of contrasting print fabric for cuff of pillowcase (also 42" wide in cotton calico)
3 - 1/8 yard of another contrasting calico fabric for accent band between body and cuff of pillowcase (42" minimum width)
4 - Embroidery thread of your color choice to go with your prints
5 - Bobbin thread to suit your machine and the color of fabric you've chosen
6 - Lightweight tear away stabilizer
7 - Rotary cutter, self healing cutting mat and clear view quilt ruler for exact edges

**CUTTING THE EDGES STRAIGHT AND TRUE IS AN ESSENTIAL STEP IN MAKING THIS PROJECT A BREEZE TO PUT TOGETHER! BE AS ACCURATE AS POSSIBLE AND THE REST OF THE PROJECT WILL BE A SNAP!**

Construction:

Sew the pillowcase first, since placement of the monogram initials will be more exact when all seams are complete and pressed.

Cut using your self healing mat and rotary tools and be as exact as possible. From the 3/4 yard pillowcase body fabric, cut one piece 27" by 41". From the 1/3 yard cuff piece, cut one piece 10" by 41". From the 1/8 yard piece, cut one piece 3" by 41".

Press the 3" accent strip in half lengthwise, right sides facing out. Press the 10" cuff in half lengthwise also, right sides facing out. Lay cuff right side up, unfolded. Lay accent strip, still folded, on top of the long side of the cuff piece, aligned with the top raw edge of the cuff.

Lay pillow body fabric right side down on top of the cuff and accent piece and pin.

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 1

Roll from the bottom edge of the pillowcase body to make a tube of rolled fabric, all the way up to the pinned edge of the cuff and accent piece.

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 2

Fold the cuff lower edge up and over the tube, aligning the raw edge with the three layers of fabric and pin. (All 41" edges should now be aligned).

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 3

Sew a 1/2 inch seam through all layers, avoiding catching the rolled fabric in your seam.

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 4

Pull the pillow case body out through the "tube" and press all layers.

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 5

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 6

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 7

When sewing is finished, embroider the designs:

Mark the center of the pillowcase body approximately 5 inches above the accent band and cuff on the body of the pillowcase. Hoop the pillowcase body with two layers of tear away stabilizer under the fabric (I used two layers since the fabric is lightweight and the Venice Initial design is fairly dense) and choose your coordinating thread color and bobbin.

Amazing Three Seam Pillow Cases with Venice Initials - step 8

Embroider one, two or three initials like a standard monogram...I like my letters to just touch. And Voila (see finished photos, both blue and brown)! What a fun, easy and knockout gift, that is personal and appreciated. I like to give these for housewarmings, weddings in sets for bride and groom, or to children getting ready for a road trip vacation... I fill them with coloring books, magazines and travel games then tie them with a wide ribbon, and each child has their "pillow" for the car.

Optional decorative stitching:

Now is your chance to try out some of the beautiful built in decorative stitches on your machine. Experiment on scrap fabric to satin stitch, eyelet stitch, character stitch along the horizontal line of the pillowcase cuff... choosing a solid fabric for the cuff instead of a print. Use a contrasting thread for the stitches, or one of the colors in your accent band... Just use the sewing machine foot as a guide for top-stitching with the decorative stitch of your choice. Be creative!!

Tips:

1. If you want to use more than one design on one pillow like these photo show and they can fit into one hoop - you may want to align and join them into a single file using your embroidery software. It's easier than aligning them physically, so if you manage to keep within your max. hoop - go for it. To learn joining designs, click here...