Homemade travel pillows

Stashbuster: travel pillows

I know I'm not alone in having loads of fabric remnants of completed (or sometimes failed) projects. Too nice to throw away, too small to do anything with and taking up too much space to ignore. A good stashbusting make is a travel pillow (or neck pillow). There are loads of free patterns for this online - see below for links.

Adult: https://blog.treasurie.com/diy-travel-pillow-neck-pillow/

Child: https://artisan82.weebly.com/blog/tutorial-kids-travel-pillow-neck-pillow

I decided to make some children's neck pillows and used this one by Hiragana Mama. The idea was to teach my daughter how to sew, and this worked well for pinning and cutting, but I ended up steering the sewing machine at a brisk pace while she pressed the foot pedal to the floor and laughed.  

Travel pillows

This pattern requires 1/2 metre of fabric, but you don't have to use 1/2 metre of the same fabric - you can mix and match. So you could use two, three or even four fabrics from your stash and end up with something that looks attractive. Why not try:

  • using recycled fabric - make it from an old T-shirt (and use matching recycled thread) 
  • using a different fabric for the top and bottom of your pillow
  • adding different fabric tips to the ends, maybe with a contrasting pocket
  • sewing a carry strap to attach it to luggage (use Prym love press studs
  • adding applique to create a face, ears or a tail

What we're looking for here is to use the stash to convince children that long journeys to see family and friends at Christmas are fun! 

Sewing the travel pillow:

  • Print it out and check that it is has printed true to scale
  • Cut two pieces on the fold
  • Put right sides together and sew around, leaving a gap
  • Trim seams and turn the work out
  • Stuff with toy filling or batting -  make sure it is quite firm but don't oversuff the back edge as it will be uncomfortable. Try it out before closing the opening!
  • Sew up the opening by hand or by folding each opening edge to the inside, pressing and then top stitching

This is a really easy project but it looks great. I made a couple in organic cotton and one dinosaur print in jersey that was left over from a pair of pyjamas. The jersey version is the most comfortable and I would definitely recommend this as a jersey-stashbuster. 

Let me know if you try any of the patterns! 

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