A houndstooth owl rests on a plaid branch atop a wool pillow embellished with zipper trim from Indygo Junction.
Wool Owl Pillow
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Inspired by To Owl a Good Night from designers Cori Derksen and Myra Harder of Blue Meadow Designs

Project maker: Jennifer Keltner


  • 4x18" rectangle brown plaid felted wool (appliqués)
  • 10x12" rectangle purple houndstooth felted wool (appliqués)
  • 8" square lavender felted wool (appliqués)
  • 4x8" rectangle blue check felted wool (appliqués)
  • Scrap orange felted wool (appliqués)
  • 16-1/2x20-1/2" rectangle solid green hand-dyed wool (appliqué foundation)
  • 16-1/2x20-1/2" rectangle backing fabric
  • Two rickrack-embellished 2"-diameter buttons
  • Three 20"-long zipper trim pieces
  • Pillow stuffing
  • Freezer paper
  • Embroidery floss: brown, purple, lavender, blue, and orange

Finished pillow: 20x16"

Quantities are for 100% wool fabrics.

Measurements include 1/4" seam allowances. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

Prepare Fabrics

Felted wool doesn't fray, so there is no need to turn under the edges of the appliqué pieces.

To felt wool, machine-wash it in a hot-water-wash, cool-rinse cycle with a small amount of detergent; machine-dry on high heat and steam-press.

Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the following order. Click on "Download this Project" for patterns.

To use freezer paper for cutting appliqué shapes, complete the following steps.

1. Lay freezer paper, shiny side down, over patterns. Use a pencil to trace each pattern, leaving 1/2" between tracings. Cut out freezer paper shapes roughly 1/4" outside traced lines.

2. Using a hot dry iron, press freezer-paper shapes, shiny sides down, onto designated wools; let cool. Cut out wool shapes on drawn lines. Peel off freezer paper.

From brown plaid wool, cut:

  • 1 of Pattern A

From purple houndstooth wool, cut:

  • 1 each of patterns B, D, and D reversed

From lavender wool, cut:

  • 1 of Pattern C

From blue check wool, cut:

  • 2 of Pattern E

From orange wool, cut:

  • 1 of Pattern F

Appliqué Pillow Top

1. Referring to Appliqué Placement Diagram, position brown plaid A branch, purple houndstooth B body, lavender C chest, purple houndstooth D wing and D reversed wing, blue check E eyes, and orange F beak on green wool 16-1/2x20-1/2" appliqué foundation rectangle. Baste in place.


2. Using embroidery threads that match appliqués, hand-stitch around each shape with a tack stitch.

3. Secure a rickrack-embellished button in the center of each blue check E eye circle.

Finish Pillow

1. Align the woven edges of the zippered accents with the raw edges of right side of appliquéd rectangle along side and top edges, so the teeth of the zipper strips are facing the center; baste. Trim off excess zipper strips. With right sides together, layer the backing rectangle and appliquéd rectangle.

2. Sew the layers together, leaving a 6"-wide opening in bottom edge for turning. Turn pillow cover right side out.

3. Fill the pillow cover with stuffing until firm. Slipstitch opening closed.