Pleats and ruching dress up a festive pair of Christmas-theme pillows just in time for a season of good cheer. Fabrics are from the Isabelle Christmas collection from Anna Griffin.

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Designer: Anna Griffin

Materials

For Pleated Pillow:

5⁄8 yard red-and-green stripe (pleated strips; if you are not using a stripe, you will only need 1⁄4 yard)
2⁄3 yard Christmas tree stripe (pillow top; if you are not using a stripe, you will only need 1⁄4 yard)
1 yard green print (pillow top, pillow back)
20"-square pillow form


For Ruched Pillow:

1⁄4 yard green print (ruched strip)
1 yard light blue print (pillow top, pillow back)
5⁄8 yard multicolor stripe (pillow top; if you are not using a stripe, you will only need 1⁄4 yard)
9×22" piece (fat eighth) red argyle (pillow top)
4-1-1⁄8"-diameter buttons: red
20"-square pillow form

Finished pillows: 20" square

Quantities are for 44⁄45"-wide, 100% cotton fabrics.
Measurements include 1⁄4" seam allowances unless otherwise indicated. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

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Cut Fabrics

For Pleated Pillow:

Cut pieces in the following order. Cut red-and-green stripe and Christmas tree stripe strips lengthwise (parallel to the selvages). Cut green print 20-1⁄2×24-1⁄2" rectangles with 241⁄2" measurement parallel to selvages.

From red-and-green stripe, cut:
• 4-2-1⁄2×20" strips, all aligned with same stripe on long edges

From Christmas tree stripe, cut:
1-8×20-1⁄2" rectangle, centered over desired motif

From green print, cut:
2-6-3⁄4×20-1⁄2" rectangles
2-20-1⁄2×24-1⁄2" rectangles

For Ruched Pillow:

Cut pieces in the following order. Cut multicolor stripe rectangle lengthwise (parallel to the selvages). Cut light blue print 20-1⁄2×24-1⁄2" rectangles with 24-1⁄2" measurement parallel to selvages.

From green print, cut:
1-7×42" strip

From light blue print, cut:
1-7-1⁄4×20-1⁄2" rectangle
2-20-1⁄2×24-1⁄2" rectangles

From multicolor stripe, cut:
1-5-1⁄2×20-1⁄2" rectangle

From red argyle, cut:
1-7×20-1⁄2" rectangle

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Assemble Pleated Pillow

1. Sew together two red-and-green stripe 2-1⁄2×20" strips along short end to make a long red-and-green stripe strip. Press seam open.

2. Turn under 1⁄4" twice along one long edge of long red-and-green stripe strip; press. Topstitch close to folded edge to make a hemmed long strip.

3. Referring to Diagram 1, fold a 3⁄4"-wide pleat 2" from one end of hemmed long strip; press. Continue making pleats every 1-1⁄2" along entire strip to make a 20-1⁄2"-long pleated strip; trim length or adjust pleats if necessary.

4. Repeat steps 1–3 to make a second pleated strip.

5. With right sides together, align raw edge of a pleated strip with one long edge of Christmas tree stripe 8×20-1⁄2" rectangle. Baste together using a scant 1⁄4" seam allowance (Diagram 2). Repeat to baste remaining pleated strip to opposite long edge of Christmas tree stripe rectangle.

6. Aligning one long edge, position a green print 6-3⁄4×20-1⁄2" rectangle right side down atop Christmas tree stripe rectangle. Sew together through all layers (Diagram 3). Press seam toward Christmas tree stripe rectangle, pressing pleated strip toward green print rectangle.

7. Repeat Step 6 to sew remaining green print 6-3⁄4×20-1⁄2" rectangle to opposite long edge of Christmas tree stripe rectangle to make pleated pillow top (Diagram 4). The pillow top should be 20-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.

8. With wrong side inside, fold each green print 20-1⁄2×24-1⁄2" rectangle in half to make two 20-1⁄2×12-1⁄4" double-thick rectangles. Overlap folded edges by about 4" to make a 20-1⁄2"-square pillow back (Diagram 5). Baste overlapped edges.

9. With right sides together, layer pleated pillow top and pillow back; pin or baste edges. Sew together through all layers to make pleated pillow cover.

10. Turn pillow cover right side out through opening in pillow back. Insert 20"-square pillow form to complete pleated pillow.

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Assemble Ruched Pillow

1. With right side inside, fold green print 7×42" strip in half lengthwise. Stitch along long edges to make a tube (Diagram 6). Press seam in one direction; turn tube right side out. Centering seam in back, press long edges of tube. The tube should be 3-1⁄4×42" including seam allowances.

2. Using long machine stitches, baste 3⁄8" from each long edge of tube (Diagram 7). Pull threads, gathering long edges, to make a 20-1⁄2"-long ruched strip (Diagram 8). Baste a scant 1⁄4" from short edges to secure gathering threads.

3. With right sides together, align light blue print 7-1⁄4×20-1⁄2" rectangle with one long edge of ruched strip (Diagram 9); adjust gathers evenly. Using 1⁄2" seam allowance, sew together through all layers. Press seam toward light blue print. In same manner, add multicolor stripe 5-1⁄2×20-1⁄2" rectangle to opposite edge of ruched strip. Press seam toward multicolor stripe.

4. Using 1⁄4" seam, sew red argyle 7×20-1⁄2" rectangle to remaining long edge of multicolor stripe rectangle to make ruched pillow top (Diagram 10). Press seam toward red argyle. The pillow top should be 20-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.

5. Sew red buttons to pillow top along multicolor stripe rectangle, spacing buttons about 4" apart.

8. With wrong side inside, fold each light blue print 20-1⁄2×24-1⁄2" rectangle in half to make two 20-1⁄2×12-1⁄4" double-thick rectangles. Overlap folded edges by about 4" to make a 20-1⁄2"-square pillow back. Baste overlapped edges.

9. With right sides together, layer pleated pillow top and pillow back; pin or baste edges. Sew together through all layers to make pleated pillow cover.

10. Turn pillow cover right side out through opening in pillow back. Insert 20"-square pillow form to complete pleated pillow.

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