Scarlet’s How to Sew a Heart Pillow Tute

My daughter is the light of my life, and nothing sounds more lovely to my crafty ears than hearing her beg “mama, I want to sew! puhhhhleeeaaaassseeeee!!!”

But also it’s sort of a double edged sword, because 3 year olds can’t really sew. What they can do is bounce about a room filled with scissors, needles, and heavy machinery, pulling any remotely-pink fabric off the shelves and squealing with glee and determination to help while unraveling every roll of sparkly thread and pom poms they set their little eyes on. In this case, I told her we could sew a new naptime pillow for school. All of my suggestions for pillow styles were rebuffed, as she had already designed the perfect pillow in her head. Her description was clear: “Mom, I want a pillow in the shape of a heart. I want a heart pocket too. I want a plain pink heart pocket and I want a tinkerbell on it.” Umm, ok. I told her to pick out her fabric and we got to work.

She really liked the results.

I also thought it turned out pretty cute, so we made a few more (including one for her cousin JoJo). So Scarlet has created her first design, what do you think? Let me share with you How to Make a Heart Shaped Pillow after the jump…

How to Sew a Heart Pillow

You’ll need at least two different fabrics (or if you want to make each side of your heart a different color you can use more). So cut two large hearts for the pillow itself from one fabric (I used Yoko Okamoto Paris Map in Violet I snagged at Fabricworm), and two small hearts for the pocket (I used Anna Maria Horner Lou Lou Thi Framed Citron). Just fold your fabric in half and cut out a heart shape.

First let’s make the pocket.

For the pocket you’ll need to cut two heart shapes out of the same fabric. If you want to embellish your pocket in anyway, take one of the heart shapes and add your embellishment on the front. I used my Brother Sewing & Embroidery Machine to add some fun graphics, but you could also use our How to Sew Sequins tute to add some sparkle, or do whatever you like. Let me digress into some embroidery speak for a second…

Since I cut my hearts before deciding to embroider, they wouldn’t fit into my smallest hoop. I decide to use adhesive stabilizer. So I loaded it into my 4″ hoop

Scored the edges of the stabilizer backing with scissors, then peeled it off:

Then smoothed my heart onto the adhesive

And placed the hoop in the machine to work it’s magic

I chose a compass design because I thought it would be cute with the map fabric, and switched up the colors to coordinate

Another little trick I like to do to get the most out of my stabilizer, is to reuse it. So I tore off the heart

Stuck another scrap of stabilizer, adhesive side up, to the back of the hoop

So I could turn it over and use it again…

OK, back to the pillow…

Once you have embellished the front of your pocket, lay your two pocket hearts right sides facing and sew around the edges, leaving a hole for turning and back stitching at the beginning and end.

Clip the curves and the pointy center of the heart:

Turn right side out and iron flat, ironing the edges of the hole in, nice and crisp.

Now grab one of the larger heart pieces, whichever one you want your pocket on, and pin your pocket in place where you’d like it to end up:

Sew it on, from one top side of the heart around to the other.

Here’s another version…

Now take your two large heart pieces and pin them right sides facing, so the pocket is sandwiched in the middle.

Sew around the edges, leaving a hole for turning, back stitching at the beginning and end.

Clip the curves and center of the heart, then turn right side out and iron flat, ironing the edges of the hole in, nice and crisp again.

Stuff with polyfill to your hearts content. Here’s a good place for the kid to help.

Hand sew the hole closed.

Pretty cute.

Sew a bunch more. This one is for Scarlet’s beloved cousin JoJo, made with Michael Miller Scallop Bunting for the pillow and Robert Kaufman Kona Cotton Solids in Peach for the pocket.

This one was Scarlet’s original design, made with Kokka Japan Matryoshka and Kitty in Pink for the pillow and Robert Kaufman Essex Linen in Hot Pink for the pocket.





SOOOOOO cute! Joleen will LOVE her pillow. I can just see her little face lighting up! So sweet of little Essie to make one for her cousin!


Shucks, those are adorable…not as cute as your models, but CLOSE!


Visiting from Tatertot and Jello tonight,
~Suzanne in NW Illinois


These pillows are great for the tooth fairy. I made one for my daughter on Valentines Day 🙂 thank you for the tutorial.


Thanks for the great info, a friend has asked me to make a heart shaped pillow out of his late Father’s favorite shirt to give to his Mom. I am a quilter, but have never made a heart shaped pillow and obviously would not want to make a mistake with the very precious fabric that I will be intrusted with. So, I turned first to Joann’s to see if I could find a pillow form, with no luck and then onto an internet search. Your instructions are very clear and cute too. I will make a test pillow first, just in case… but I do now feel confident with these fun and helpful instructions Steven’s shirt will be transformed into a very special family heirloom.



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