Nautical Star Pillow
Use a white-and-navy colorway to create a nautical-looking summer pillow. Fabrics are from the Cotton Solids collection by American Made Brand for Clothworks.
Inspired by: Stitch & Switch Summer Pillow from designer Corey Yoder
Quilt tester: Martha Gamm
Yardages and cutting instructions are based on 42" of usable fabric width.
- 3⁄4 yard solid white (block, border)
- 1-1⁄3 yard solid navy (block, border, backing, binding)
- 27"-square muslin (lining)
- 27"-square batting
- 24"-square pillow form
Finished size: 24-1⁄2" square
Finished block: 18" square
Cut pieces in the following order.
If you prefer to make triangle-squares larger than needed and trim them to size, cut 3-1⁄4" squares instead of the 3-1⁄8" squares specified in cutting instructions.
From solid white, cut:
- 1-5-3⁄4" square, cutting it diagonally twice in an X for 4 medium triangles total
- 1-5" square
- 4 -3-1⁄8" squares
- 4 -3-1⁄8" squares, cutting each in half diagonally for 8 small triangles total
- 8-2-3⁄4 ×5" rectangles
- 44 -2-3⁄4" squares
- 4 -1-1⁄4 ×18-1⁄2" strips
From solid navy, cut:
- 3 -2-1⁄2 ×42" binding strips
- 2-14-3⁄4 × 24-1⁄2" rectangles
- 4 -5-3⁄8" squares, cutting each in half diagonally for 8 large triangles total
- 4 -3-1⁄2" squares
- 4 -3-1⁄8" squares
- 16-2-3⁄4 ×5" rectangles
- 16-2-3⁄4" squares
Measurements include 1⁄4" 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) Use a pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong side of solid white 3-1⁄8" squares. (To prevent fabric from stretching as you draw lines, place 220-grit sandpaper under each square.)
2) Layer a marked solid white square atop a solid navy 3-1⁄8" square. Sew together with two seams, stitching 1⁄4" on each side of drawn line (Diagram 1). Cut pair apart on drawn line. Press open to make two triangle-squares. Each triangle-square should be 2-3⁄4" square including seam allowances. Repeat to make eight triangle-squares total.
3) Referring to Diagram 2, sew together two triangle-squares and two solid white 23⁄4" squares in pairs. Join pairs to make a corner unit. The unit should be 5" square including seam allowances. Repeat to make four corner units total.
4) Use a pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong side of each solid navy 2-3⁄4" square.
5) Align a marked solid navy square with one end of a solid white 2-3⁄4 × 5" rectangle (Diagram 3; note direction of marked line). Sew on marked line; trim excess fabric, leaving 1⁄4" seam allowance. Press open attached triangle. Add a second marked solid navy square to opposite end of rectangle to make a solid navy Flying Geese unit. The unit should be 5 × 2-3⁄4" including seam allowances. Repeat to make eight solid navy Flying Geese units total.
6) Referring to Diagram 4, sew a solid white small triangle to each short edge of a solid navy Flying Geese unit. Referring to Diagram 5, sew a solid white medium triangle to bottom edge.
7) Referring to Diagram 6, sew two solid navy large triangles to the Step 6 unit to create a side unit. The unit should be 5× 9-1⁄2" including seam allowances.
8) Repeat steps 6 and 7 to make four side units total.
9) Referring to Diagram 7, lay out four solid white 2-3⁄4" squares, four solid navy Flying Geese units, and solid white 5" square in three rows. Sew together pieces in rows. Join rows to make block center. The block center should be 9-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.
10) Lay out corner units, side units, and block center in three rows (Diagram 8). Sew together pieces in rows. Join rows to make a block. The block should be 18-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.
Assemble Border Units
1) Use a pencil to mark a diagonal line on wrong side of each remaining solid white 2-3⁄4" square.
2) Using marked solid white squares and solid navy 2-3⁄4 × 5" rectangles, repeat Assemble Block, Step 5, to make 16 white Flying Geese units.
3) Sew together four white Flying Geese units in a row (Diagram 9). The row should be 2-3⁄4 ×18-1⁄2" including seam allowances. Repeat to make four Flying Geese rows total.
4) Join a solid white 1-1⁄4 ×18-1⁄2" strip to bottom edge of a Flying Geese row to create a border unit (Diagram 10). The unit should be 3-1⁄2 ×18-1⁄2" including seam allowances. Repeat to make four border units total.
Assemble Pillow Top
1) Referring to Pillow Top Assembly Diagram, lay out block, solid navy 3-1⁄2" squares, and border units in three rows.
2) Sew together pieces in rows. Press seams toward border units. Join rows to make pillow top. Press seams in one direction. The pillow top should be 24-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.
1) Layer pillow top, batting, and muslin lining; baste. Quilt as desired.
2) Trim batting and muslin lining even with pillow top edges.
3) Turn one long edge of each solid navy 14-3⁄4 × 24-1⁄2" rectangle under 1⁄4"; press. Turn under 1⁄4" again. Stitch in place to hem pillow back pieces. Each pillow back piece should be 14-1⁄4 × 24-1⁄2" including seam allowances.
4) Referring to Pillow Back Assembly Diagram, overlap hemmed edges of pillow back pieces by 4" to make a 24-1⁄2" square. Stitch across overlaps to make pillow back.
5) Layer quilted pillow top and pillow back with wrong sides together. Stitch a scant 1⁄4" from outer edges to make pillow cover.
6) Bind pillow cover with joined solid navy binding strips. Insert pillow form through opening to complete pillow.