Like intermittent white stripes down a highway, solid neon colors flicker on the solid dark gray background of a small throw pillow. Fabrics are from the FreeSpirit Solids collection by FreeSpirit (
Neon Lights

Inspired by: Firecracker from designer Heather Briggs (

Designer: Lindsay Mayland

Finished Pillow: 12×18-1/2"


Yardages and cutting instructions are based on 42" of usable fabric width.

  • 8" square solid neon yellow (pillow center, middle border)
  • 7/8 yard solid dark gray (pillow center, inner and outer borders, backing, binding)
  • 8" square solid neon green (pillow center, middle border)
  • 8" square solid neon orange (pillow center, middle border)
  • 8" square solid neon pink (pillow center, middle border)
  • 15×22" muslin (lining)
  • 15×22" batting
  • 12×18" pillow form

Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the following order.

From solid neon yellow, cut:

  • 1—3-1/2×6" rectangle

From dark gray, cut:

  • 2—2-1/2×42" binding strips
  • 3—1-1/2×42" strips for inner and outer borders
  • 2—2×14" rectangles
  • 3—1-1/2×14" rectangles
  • 2—11-3/4×12" backing rectangles
  • 1—2-1/2×6" rectangle
  • 1—2×6" rectangle
  • 1—1-1/2×6" rectangle

From solid neon green, cut:

  • 1—3×6" rectangle

From solid neon orange, cut:

  • 1—2-1/2×6" rectangle

From solid neon pink, cut:

  • 1—2×6" rectangle

From remaining solid neon yellow, solid neon green, solid neon orange, and solid neon pink, cut:

  • Enough 3/4"-wide strips in 1-1/2—2" lengths to total 62" for middle border

Assemble Pillow Center

Measurements include 14" seam allowances. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

Press seams in directions indicated by arrows on diagrams. If no direction is specified, press seam toward darker fabric.

1. Referring to Diagram 1, sew together the following pieces to make a rectangle set. The set should be 6×14" including seam allowances.

  • solid neon yellow 3-1/2×6" rectangle
  • solid dark gray 2-1/2×6" rectangle
  • solid neon green 3×6" rectangle
  • solid dark gray 2×6" rectangle
  • solid neon orange 2-1/2×6" rectangle
  • solid dark gray 1-1/2×6" rectangle
  • solid neon pink 2×6" rectangle
Neon Lights

2. Cut rectangle set into four 1-1/4"-wide dash segments (Diagram 2).

Neon Lights

3. Referring to Diagram 3, lay out solid dark gray 1-1/2×14" rectangles, dash segments, and solid dark gray 2×14" rectangles. Sew together to make pillow center. The pillow center should be 9-1/2×14" including seam allowances.

Neon Lights

Assemble Pillow Top

1. Cut a solid dark gray 1-1/2×42" strip to make:

  • 2—1-1/2×9-1/2" inner border strips

2. Add inner border strips to short edges of pillow center (Pillow Top Assembly Diagram). Press seams toward inner border. The pillow center now should be 9-1/2×16" including seam allowances.

Neon Lights

3. Piece assorted solid neon yellow, solid neon green, solid neon orange, and solid neon pink 3/4"-wide strips to make:

  • 2—3/4×16-1/2" middle border strips
  • 2—3/4×9-1/2" middle border strips

4. Add short middle border strips to short edges of pillow center. Add long middle border strips to remaining edges. The pillow center now should be 10×16-1/2" including seam allowances. Press seams toward inner border.

5. Piece and cut remaining solid dark gray 1-1/2×42" strips to make:

  • 2—1-1/2×18-1/2" outer border strips
  • 2—1-1/2×10" outer border strips

6. Add short outer border strips to short edges of pillow center. Add long outer border strips to remaining edges to make pillow top. Press seams toward inner border. The pillow top should be 12×18-1/2" including seam allowances.

Finish Pillow

1. Layer pillow top, batting 15×22" rectangle, and muslin 15×22" rectangle; baste.

2. Quilt as desired. Designer Lindsay Mayland machine-quilted through the center of each 14"-long solid dark gray strip in the pillow center and through all borders to each short end.

3. Trim batting and muslin lining even with pillow top edges.

4. On each dark gray 11-3/4×12" backing rectangle, turn one long edge under 1/4"; press. Turn same edges under 1/4" again. Stitch in place to hem pillow back pieces. Each pillow back piece should be 11-1/4×12" including seam allowances.

5. Referring to Pillow Back Assembly Diagram, overlap hemmed edges of pillow back pieces by 4" to make a 12×18-1/2" rectangle. Stitch across overlaps to make pillow back.

Neon Lights

6. Layer quilted pillow top and pillow back with wrong sides together. Sew together outer edges to make a pillow cover.

7. Bind pillow cover with solid dark gray binding strips. Insert pillow form through opening in pillow back to complete pillow.