Pillows, of course! Some loyal Patwig followers may remember the Hermes tie pillows. At the time I thought those were nice and that I might make more someday — even for myself.
And so it happened that a need arose in Patwig’s household. A munificent gesture from our landlord revitalized our living space and brought about the arrival of unadorned couches — which just cried out for pillows (their slender arms, though elegant, offer no cushion). Project!
We were also harboring an old feather bed that had been soiled years ago by an unfortunate kitty
and I had an abundant collection of men’s ties, largely donated after the Hermes projects (thank you Nancy Matsumoto, Nicole Miller, and Matthew Van Houten!).
The challenge was to get the feathers out of their old soiled casing
and into a new casing made from old curtains
This stuff just has no respect for gravity. It drifts and pivots away just as you think you might grasp a wisp. Should you ever decide to try this, don’t do it outside, though you might be tempted. The slightest air movement might as well be a raging hurricane.
Taking apart ties is a delicate business. They are quilt-like, with an inner batting enfolded by a large piece of silk, each end hemmed down with a smaller piece of silk and loosely handstitched up the center, sides joined by the manufacturer’s label. Each scissor nip must be precise.
I gathered golds for the first, largely left in tie shape
For the second pillow I also stayed close to the tie shape
Next I went for variation of pin-tucking to add texture to the surface
The only problem with pin-tucking is that it gobbles up limited fabric real estate. I needed to prep several more ties at this stage
It finished up a puffy 22-or-so inches square
By now scraps were piling up from the cutting I’d done on the first few pillows
So I thought I’d make the last couple with more traditional quilt blocks. Though quite deflated by now, the feather bed looked like it might fill two more 20-ish-inch casings
The last is the puffiest, thanks to the fact that the feathers had run out and it’s mostly filled with goose down. This block is “Pineapple,” a Log Cabin variation.
Having run out of curtains, this casing was made from donated upholstery samples (thanks Lana Lenar!)
It gets stuffed into the cover —
— then it’s ready for the final seam
And voila, five pillows for our new couches
Pillow commissions are available. Just send me an email or comment below. Seymour is ready as well.