Finished Project Home Decor Sewing

Castle Improv- From Snack Mat to Pillow

As you’ll eventually see, I’ve got a few favorite fabric designers.. one of which is the amazing Lizzy House. I had the honor of meeting her this past December, and I think she’s absolutely down to earth and super cool.. she’s one of those people I could see myself being friends with; however, I don’t want to be the “creepy stalker fan”.. so yeah. Anyway, sometime last year, I came across her fabric line Castle Peeps and fell in love.. so I purchase fat quarter bundles of two of the three colorways. I ended up making a quilt top out of the fabric, along with some solids.. however I still need to add some fabric to it; the quilt top is currently in a gallon ziplock bag down in my sewing room.

Well, Sew Mama Sew was hosting Pillow Month last month, and I felt compelled to enter.. I’m not entirely sure if I made it to the top 20-25 for the category I entered, but I used up some of my scraps of the fabric I had to enter in a pieced pillow. Funnily enough, the pillow started out as a mug rug/snack mat.. however I don’t know how big they are ‘supposed’ to be, and while I was working on what would have been the front of the snack mat, I was staring at it and realized it needed to evolve past that stage for some reason, so I started adding onto it. Here’s the end result:


My entry for the Sew Mama Sew! Pillow Contest

Isn’t it awesome? In case you were wondering, the lower left corner all the way up to the chicken was going to be the snack mat. This pillow measures 15.5″ square, and it’s enclosed with a zippered back. The entire pillow is made with either Castle Peeps fabric, or Kona Cotton; although I’m wanting to say that the light blue background is actually Moda.

Here are some closeups:


Closeup of the blocked in Bard. He's a favorite with people.
The chicken and dogs. These are just super adorable.

Here’s the discription I sent in with the first picture as my entry:

My pillow that I’ve called “Castle Improv” is made exclusively from fabrics from Lizzy House’s “Castle Peeps” fabric line in the Gallant Green and Cardinal Red colorways, and are accompanied by either Kona or Moda solids. My pillow is 15.5″ square, and is a zippered cover and has scrappy binding around the edges. The pieced front has iron on fusible in the back, so when I wash the pillow cover, I can remove the form and wash it in the washing machine without worrying about fraying edges compromising the integrity of the pillow.

The inspiration for this pillow comes from the fabric itself; for some reason, the entire Castle Peeps line has brought out the improvisational sewist in me; normally I’m all about sticking to a pattern or a specific design, rather than making it up as I go along.  In fact, this pillow top was initially going to be a mug rug, but I felt that the piece needed to tell a bigger story than I could fit into a mug rug so I just added onto it until I was happy with it. I’m all about not wasting fabric, so when I was creating my improvisational quilt top using the fabric, I saved every bit and piece I could to use for a later project, which came out being this pillow! The thing I love the most about Lizzy House’s fabric is enhanced, rather than overshadowed by improvisational work.

Like I said, I don’t think I actually made it to the voting stage -I probably would have gotten an email by now notifying if I did; however I’m still hanging onto that shred of hope.. but I still had a ton of fun making it.

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