Stenciled Drop Cloth Pillows

Stenciled Drop Cloth Throw Pillow

Drop cloths are for more than just catching drips from your painting projects! Drop Cloths are made from a loosely woven natural cloth (usually cotton), in beautiful neutral color. They are very inexpensive and can be used for home decorating projects! (I only paid $12.99 for the huge 12′ x 9′ piece of cloth!) They are available at any store that sells paint or paint supplies. I must be on a Drop Cloth decorating kick lately! (Stay tuned! I will share more of my decorating projects soon!) Since I had a good size piece leftover from another home decorating project I have been working on, I decided to be frugal and use up every scrap!  I made a couple of pillows for my living room. Aren’t they cute? Any stencil can be applied on these Drop Cloth pillows.

You can make them any size, but I made my pillows using a 16″ square pillow form.  Read through the directions first, then make any adjustments for the size you want.

For my 16″ pillow, I cut out two 18″ squares. This gave me a 1/2″ flange on all 4 sides. Place your stencil, centered onto the fabric. I highly recommend using a Repositionable Adhesive Spray on the back of the stencil. This will hold the stencil firmly in place and help keep it from moving and will help prevent the paint from bleeding under the stencil.


Find the center and place the stencil onto the cloth. Press firmly, especially around any small detailed areas.


You can use any acrylic paint, but I recommend mixing it with some Textile Medium for Fabrics. This helps to make the acrylic paint more pliable for fabric and also makes it permanent. Follow the directions for mixing on the bottle. I like to use a styrofoam plate for mixing.


Use a Stencil Brush to lightly dab the paint onto the stencil. Get a little bit of paint onto the brush and dab it a couple of times onto the plate to get off some of the excess paint. Practice on a scrap if you are not sure how much paint to use.


Do not press too hard with the dabber! It will cause the paint to bleed under the stencil. If you need more paint, don’t press it harder, just go over the design again with a little more paint after applying a light coat.


When you have covered the stencil area with paint to your liking, allow it to dry for at least 10 – 15 minutes.


Carefully peel back the stencil and allow it to dry another 30 – 45 minutes (you want it to be dry enough to handle while you sew the pillow together.)


Place right sides together and pin. Leave a space open on one of the sides for inserting the pillow later (about 12″ long.)  Sew using a 1/2″ seam allowance. (So for a 16″ pillow, this pillow will be 17″ after sewing it around all sides – remember, there will also be a 1/2″ flange sewn later.) Clip the corners so that when it’s turned right side out, you will have nice, pointed corners.


To have a nice crisp edge, press around the edges of the pillow with the steam setting on your iron.


Then top stitch around the edges, but stop the stitching where the opening is. (This will be stitched later.)


This creates the flange. Stuff in the pillow form. (I find that it’s easier if you “fold” the pillow in half and hold it as you insert it into the pillow case.


Pin it closed and stitch the opening by hand using a whip stitch (as shown above.)


Pin the part that was closed with the whip stitching and top stitch this edge with 1/2″ seam allowance (it will match up with the other top stitching – just so you know, it might be a little awkward stitching on a stuffed pillow – but it works if you pin it well!)

Proudly display your new, custom made pillow!

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