Sunday, May 20, 2012

Fringed Bolster

A few weeks ago I shared a fabric that I scored at a thrift store.
It happened to be the color and style my good friend Donnella is doing her outdoor decor in.  After rifling through my stash of trims, here's what I created out of that fabric.
I just love the fringe on the ends of this bolster! 

Follow along as I show how I made this bolster.

The bolster fill I had was 15"x5"
So I cut my piece 16"x16 3/4"  The 16" is for the length of the pillow plus 1" for seam allowance.  The 16 3/4" is the diam. of my bolster x pi (5x3.14) plus 1" for seam allowance.
I also cut 2 circles 6" round.
Since I use zipper by the yard I also cut 2 zipper stops out of scraps.

Step 1-Serge along the edges where the zipper will go.  
Find the center bottoms of your circles and make a small clip mark.  Lay your fringe on the right side of your circle at the center bottom clip.  Stitch using 1/2" seam allowances.  There's really no need to clip into the fringe to make the curve of the circle.
When you meet up at the starting point, simply clip the stitching that binds the fringe together and butt the fringe edges up next to each other and finish stitching.
Once you've sewn the fringe to both circles, set them aside.

Step 2-Zipper.  I use zipper by the yard and I can't stress enough how much easier it is to work with than a store bought zipper.  If you haven't tried using zipper by the yard, I highly suggest you give it a try!

Fold under 1/2" on one edge of your zipper stop.  Place it on top of your zipper end and stitch close to the zipper teeth.
Now stitch on the other side of the zipper teeth.
With right sides together stitch the zipper edge of your main fabric piece to the long zipper edge.  Stitch close to the zipper teeth.
Pause 3-4 inches from the end with your needle down.  Fold under 1/2" of your remaining zipper stop and align it with the end of your pillow piece to establish where you need to cut your zipper by the yard off.
Place your zipper stop between the main pillow piece and your zipper end.
And finish stitching.
It should look like this.
Push the fabric over the zipper teeth to form a fold.  Stitch on the opposite side of the zipper using your zipper foot as a guide to keep your stitches straight.
Attach your zipper slide at this point.

Step 3- Lay the non zipper edge face down on your circle.  Match up the center of the zipper with the clip in the bottom of your circle.  Start stitching an inch or so from the clip mark.  Cut into the seam allowance as necessary to accommodate the curve of the circle.  Stitch all the way around the circle stopping an inch or so from the starting point.
At this point you can see if your main pillow piece is cut the exact right size or not.  Sometimes they need to have a little trimmed off this edge and sometimes you just need to make a smaller seam allowance.

Stitch the remaining zipper fabric edge to the other side of the zipper, stitching close to the zipper teeth.
Now you can finish stitching the circle.
Repeat this step on the other end with the circle, making sure you align the center of your zipper with the center bottom clip mark.
Open up the zipper and turn right side out.
Stuff with your pillow fill. Pin It
Pin It


  1. You always give the clearest and most precise directions!
    Stop over to enter my giveaway!

  2. Thanks for another great tutorial. Where did you find fringe suitable for outdoors?

  3. Love the pillows! great tute too! I'm fining a way to follow you... LF or FB... hope you'll come visit me too... Little Bit from

  4. Love the fringe. I am working on a bolster pillow also. Should be done in a day or two. Love for you to come and check it out!

  5. Hmm, I think I need to make myself a bolster! Thanks so much for sharing on Tout It Tuesday.

  6. These are beautiful! Love that fabric and the fringe especially! Your friend is super-lucky :)

  7. So cute! Thanks for sharing at Terrific Tuesdays.

  8. I am inviting you to come and be part of my blog hop:

  9. You are amazing. This is to die for. I agree, your tutes are always so clear and concise. If I owned a sewing machine I would SO be trying this!! Thanks for sharing on SOS!!


  10. SO pretty!! Hope you can link it up at my brand new Trendy Tuesday party!!

  11. I love bolster, and yes that fringe in particular, and think our readers will do also. May I invite you to come participate, and link it up at our linky party,

  12. Featuring your pillow on this weeks SOS!!

    Thanks for sharing it with us!



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  14. Very Nice Collection