Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Winter Solstice and Happy Holidays! I hope you had/are having a wonderful time celebrating with your family and friends.
Every year my co-workers and I make each other gifts for Christmas. In the past it has been a food product. One year it was mulling spices, another it was peppermint bark. This year I wanted to sew my co-workers something since I’ve been on a sewing kick. I also figured that all my extra time on sabbatical would enable me to prep for the holidays more adequately. Boy was I wrong. The sabbatical just gave me the hope that I had infinite time, and encouraged me to create an idyllic time blind list of dozens upon dozens of things I wanted to accomplish. I won’t tell you how many things were on the list or you’d just laugh at my naivety. Let’s just say I’ll have no shortage of blog entries in the coming months.
Honestly this whole sabbatical and hat making adventure has lead me to identify one of my tragic flaws. I’m going to call it over-optimistic time dilation. You see I’ve always been terrible at time management. In college I would stay up for days on end with different partners to finish projects we all thought would get done earlier. At work I’ve learned to purposely increase my estimates for how long things will take, to lengths that seem preposterous to my over enthusiastic mind. My problem is not necessarily knowing how long something will take but instead giving myself overly ambitious deadlines because I don’t take into account interruptions or unforeseen circumstances or am overly enthusiastic about how hard I will want work on the project after a long day at work.
To add to my estimation troubles, I’m a bit of a procrastinator. My theory is that I’ve actually developed this over-aggressive time estimation as a defense mechanism to cure my procrastination. I actually believe that giving myself nearly unachievable deadlines holds me to lofty goals and forces me to work on these goals rather than procrastinate. It works about 50% of the time. Unfortunately this means that the other 50%of the time I spend watching a movie with Will or drinking wine instead of accomplishing something on my endless list of exciting projects to try. Anyway, all this is to say that in addition to the beast of a sabbatical list, I also created myself a Christmas project list and full on over-enthusiastic schedule for Christmas projects I wanted to accomplish. Guess how that turned out? Yeah… let’s just say I finished my co-worker’s presents the day before I left for Nashville, and didn’t make anything for our families. On the bright side I think I have a New Year’s resolution!
One of the presents I made this year is a great stand by for anyone who needs a quick present for a home owner. My co-worker can’t be described by anything other than an “extreme Purdue fan”. His entire apartment is decorated in black and gold. Being a bachelor he doesn’t have much in the way of frivolities like decorative throw pillows so I decided to make him a Purdue colored pillow for his living room. You can adapt this simple striped pillow to any color scheme you see fit.
Simple Striped Pillow
- 1 yard of black material (or color of your choice*)
- 1 yard of gold material (or color of your choice*)
- 18″x18″ pillow form
*You can use any materials you want, but make sure that the two fabrics you choose are of a similar structure and weave. For instance, don’t choose a black leather with a knit gold material. I used thick black woven faux suede and a gold pleather.
All measurements below account for 1/2″ seam allowance.
- Cut two 7″x19″ rectangles, two 1.5″x19″ rectangles and two 12″x19″ rectangles from black.
- Cut one 5″x19″ rectangle and two 2″x19″ rectangles from gold.
3. Pin 5″ gold rectangle to both 1.5″ black rectangle lengthwise. Stitch.
4. Pin one 2″ gold rectangle lengthwise to each 1.5″ black rectangle end remaining. Stitch.
5. Pin one black 7″ rectangle lengthwise to each of the 2″ gold rectangles. Stitch.
6. Press on wrong side of pillow. The front of your pillow is complete!
7. Take the 12″ rectangle and fold under a lengthwise edge 1/2″ to form a hem. Repeat for second rectangle.
8. Lay the finished edge of one of the rectangles over the finished edge of the second rectangle, overlapping by 2.5″. Pin and baste along the edge of the fabric at the overlap point.
9. Line up the back square created in 9 by the front square created in 6, right sides together.
10. Pin edges and stitch. Trim edges and clip points, turn inside out.
11. Place pillow cover over pillow form by inserting through back opening.