Wednesday, June 4, 2014

DIY Outdoor Pillows: The 15 Minute Tablecloth and Plastic Bag Method


A few weeks back I shared my ideas for a backyard patio mini makeover.  Well, I'm happy to say they're finally coming along.  I'll be sharing more on the full progress in another post, but today I want to talk about pillows and pops of color.


All of the furniture on the patio is a neutral color...so are the pavers...so are the two fireplaces. Do you see where I'm going with this?  We need color, people!   So the other day I was walking through Christmas Tree Shop and I spotted a basket full of fun outdoor tablecloths.  They were all different sizes - but all the same price $9.99.  I weeded through until I found the largest one.  The bigger the table cloth = the more pillows (I am sure I can get at least five out of this one tablecloth..you do the math).  That's right this would not be tablecloth for long, it would soon be a bunch of outdoor pillows for my patio.


Outdoor pillows take a beating from the weather and the sun so I really didn't want to spend a lot of money on them knowing they may only last a season or two.  I also didn't want to spend much time and I'm thrilled they each only took me about 15 minutes to make.  Alright here's what you'e gonna do.  Lay out your table cloth nice and flat.


Now for a 16x16" envelope pillow you want to cut a piece that's 17.5" wide by about 35" long.   If you can use two finished edges for at least some of your pillows covers you'll really save some time because the hemming is already done for you.

Once I cut my pieces I ironed them so they were really flat.   Along the unfinished short end you want to double fold it over about half an inch to make a nice finished edge.  Sew a straight line across to make the edge.  I didn't even bother finishing off the long edge, but you can zig zag stitch it if you're worried about fraying.

Now flip the piece of fabric over so the wrong side is up.  Fold the top and bottom in toward the middle so you form a square.  You want the square to measure about 16" so adjust how much is folded as you measure....when you have it at 16" press the folds down with the iron to make a nice straight crease.


Pin the sides if you'd like and then sew a straight stitch down each side to create the envelope pillow case.  Turn it right side out.  

We can't stuff this baby with a regular pillow insert - not with the rain and dew that will get on it.  Which brings me to what I like to call beg, borrow, and steal.  You need to go knock on all your neighbor's doors or putout an APB on Facebook (that's what I did...seriously!) for plastic shopping bags.  Take one of the bigger shopping bags and put all the rest of the bags inside of it.


Shape your bag of bags into a square-ish shape and then stuff that into the envelope pillow cover. 


These aren't supposed to be comfy-lay-your-head-down-and-take-an-afternoon-nap pillows.  They are supposed to be pops of color and outdoor patio decor so no need to point out they won't be comfy....haha.  Just thought I'd point that out since I get lots of feedback about my burlap pillows not being comfy...same concept here. 



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42 comments:

  1. I can't believe no one has commented on this post in nearly 5 years! I think this is a lovely idea. And so great that it repurposes old plastic bags. I can't wait to try this! :)

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