While making memory pillows for gifts this year I got to thinking, "this fringe would make a really cute Christmas tree", so another pillow idea was born. I still have a couple people that I don't know what to do for and this is a perfect gift that is relatively quick and easy to put together.
You'll need a few supplies; felt for the tree, trunk and star at the top, a base fabric for the front and back and sewing supplies.
I chose a solid green felt and a green swirl flannel that I fell in love with. I plan to alternate the two materials for the tree and use the swirl for the back. I also grabbed a small square of brown and yellow felt. I always use sheet material for the backing fabric (it's readily available and inexpensive, perfect for projects such as these).
So, to get you started, draw the size of tree you want on a piece of paper and cut out your pattern. I am alternating so I cut one tree from the solid green and one from the swirly fabric.
I stacked them on top of one another and marked them in 1" increments. Cut them out into strips as shown. If you're alternating like I am you'll get two trees from this.
Here it is just laid out on the table.
Note: The second tree will start and end with the lighter fabric, your pillows will not be exact matches.
You will need a 15" piece of backing fabric for the front of the pillow. (a 14" pillow form plus 1/2" seam allowances). Center your pieces on the backing fabric, slightly overlapping and pin in place.
I used different thread colors to stitch these on so sew a straight stitch attaching all swirly fabric pieces then switch out your thread and sew the dark green pieces, removing pins as you go.
Here is what you should have at this point, after clipping all your threads and cleaning it up.
Cut a small trunk out of brown felt and tack it on at the base of your tree. I did a simple running stitch and matched the thread as close as I could. You could do all kinds of cute things with this.
Then I cut out the star for the top. Same thing, stitch it on at the top of your tree.
You will need a 15" square piece of fabric for the back of your pillow (I used the green swirly, I love that fabric). Lay it face-up on the table. Take the front piece and lay it face-down on top, pinning the two together leaving an opening at the bottom for the pillow form.
Sew together using a 1/2" seam allowance, remember to leave your opening. Sometimes I stitch it a second time around for good measure, back-stitching at start and finish.
I fringed the tree at this point. Make sure you've got a nice pair of sharp scissors and just start cutting each row up to the stitch line, being careful not to knick it.
Insert pillow form and pin opening closed.
I always use a doubled piece of thread and slip stitch the opening closed. Here's a great tutorial in case you need one for this, http://www.instructables.com/id/Hand-Sewing-Basic-Slip-Stitch-Blind-Stitch/
I finish with a quilter's knot, after you've closed up your pillow send your thread out the back close to the seam. Wrap your thread around your need 3-4 times,
keeping your thread tight stick your needle back into the hole that your thread came out of in the pillow back. As you pull your needle through the fabric a tight little knot forms.
Now, you've got your knot and you need to hide it. I take my needle and stick it through the fabric between the knot and my protruding thread for stability and then pull on the thread. Your knot will get sucked inside of the pillow and disappear.
See, no knot (if you look close you can see where the hole was). Clip your thread and you're done.
You've got a nice, closed seam and an adorable Christmas Pillow.