Christmas in July ~ Red & White

It’s a classic color combination – one of the most collectible for antique quilts – and it’s perfect for holiday decorating.


Red and white.  Red and cream.  Any shade of red – every shade of red! There’s an “infinite variety”.  (You knew I would have to reference that amazing quilt show, right?)

I love pillows.  For decorating, for gifts and for impromptu naps – they’re very versatile that way.  Changing the pillows in a room is a quick change, especially at the holidays.  They’re also relatively easy to make, sort of like mini quilts… in fact, many of your favorite mini quilt patterns would make great pillows.

Using an assortment of red prints from Moda’s designer collections and a few Basics, these pillows were made with either a single block from a big quilt pattern or a mini quilt pattern.


This is a block from Round & Round by Camille Roskelley of Thimbleblossoms.  The fabrics are from Vintage Picnic, Handmade, Hey Dot, Little Ruby, Hometown Girl and Hop, Skip & a Jump.  With borders, this pillow finishes at 24″ x 24″.  (I love big pillows.)


This is Mini Blossom by Joanna Figueroa – Miss Fig Tree & Co.  The tiny floral print is from Strawberry Fields Revisited, also a Figgy production.  This pillow measures 20″ x 20″.


Red Letter Day – really!  Camille’s pattern is made with four blocks but nine made a better size pillow.  “Borrowing” the reversed block idea from her big Red Letter Day pattern, this pillow measures 24″ x 24″.  The fabrics are from Hello Darling.


Down South Mini by She Quilts A Lot – Peta Peace.  I love this pattern and made a scrappy version for the Office Pillow Challenge.  Polka dots from Hometown Girl, the cool scallop print from Vintage Picnic and the diagonal stripe from Handmade are the fabrics for this 20″ x 20″ pillow.

One big block… you knew this one was  coming.  Swoon.


Close.  Swoon Sixteen by Thimbleblossoms.  The fabrics?  Handmade stripe, Little Ruby dots and ditsy print – the pillow measures 20″ x 20″.


Mini Sunshine – made mini-er.  Nine blocks instead of the 12 in this Fig Tree & Co. pattern makes this pillow about 24″ x 24″ with the borders.  The fabrics are Hey Dot, Little Ruby, Handmade, and Hop, Skip & a Jump.


One Bright Side block is all that’s needed for this pillow – pattern by Vanessa Goertzen of Lella Boutique.  The fabrics are Little Ruby.  This yummy pillow measures 24″ x 24″.

A couple of things to mention about how we finished the pillows… they’re quilted with batting and a plain white muslin backing.  When the front of the pillow is quilted, I prefer to then use a quilted pillow-back.  The backing fabrics for all the pillows are from the Linen Closet Basics – a 45″ wide linen-cotton blend toweling-like fabric.  (It is quite wonderful, especially after it’s been washed.)


The pillows are finished with a zipper so they’re easily removed for laundering.

Because I wasn’t entirely done with pillows… and there was this really cute Moda Home Christmas tea towel in the warehouse… I made this.


I did trim off the bottom of the tea towel so it wasn’t quite so long.  The stitching on the seams-hems on the sides was removed and the hem pressed open to give me a little more room to work with, then the towel was trimmed to measure 16 1/2″ x 19 1/2″.  I used a solid red toweling for the side borders and machine-quilted it.  Rick-rack trim and it’s done.  The finished pillow measures 20″ x 24″.

A huge thank you to Sinta Borland, Darlene Johannis, Kristine Long and Judy Adams for making the pillow tops – mini quilts.  And thank you to Maggi Honeyman for quilting everything – fronts and backs.  This pillow-palooza would never have happened without you.

Thank yous go to Sandy Klop – American Jane, Brigitte Heitland – Zen Chic and Pat Sloan for creating such great red fabrics.  And finally, thank you to Vanessa – Lella Boutique, Joanna – Fig Tree & Co., and Bonnie and Camille for the terrific patterns and of course, your red fabrics.

That’s it for today.

Happy Tuesday!





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32 thoughts on “Christmas in July ~ Red & White

  1. I want them all! I have this “fear” or ” reluctance” to make pillows but I love them!

  2. Love all of your pillows. Now those Red and white are perfect for – Canada Day – 🙂 Great idea!!

  3. Hi Carrie! Am I correctly figuring that you seamed back to front rather than binding? Did you put in a zipper? Where? Thanks!

    1. Hi Cynthia! Yes, I like finishing pillows with a zipper. I put it in the “bottom” so that it’s in the seam and usually not noticed.

      And yes, as much as I like the quilt-binding finish on quilt-y pillows, I wanted these to be a simple knife-edge finish. So the back is seam to the front right sides together and then turned right-side out. (Remember to open the zipper before you do that stitching… ask me how I know this? lol)

  4. Wow, some great ideas here! I especially like the floursack towel one for a room with country decor. You’ve given me some ideas to work on.

  5. I can just see the twin bed in the guest room covered with these pillows!! Thanks for all the wonderful ideas!

  6. May I make a suggestion? How about a pillow giveaway? Lucky winner gets to choose one. You can spare one, can’t you? What? Which one would I pick? Mini Sunshine. Thanks for asking.

    1. Hi Patty! Ducky was too fast for you! She’s absconded with all of the pillows – all eight of them! She said something about “needing” them for decorating and Moda’s Open House. It all sounds a little fishy to me. 🙂

  7. Awesome pillows. I think they would look great any time of year – not just the holidays!

  8. Would love to know how you got the “points” of each pillow so “pointy” … usually they are boxed or just sort of rounded. The “points” add to the uniqueness of the pillows … very cool!

    1. Hi Linda! The corners are angled a bit and then the excess fabric trimmed. Angled – the seam allowance is tapered as it goes into the corner so that the seam allowance in the corner is wider than it is at the sides. Think “cushion diamond” as opposed to a square-cut or rectangular-cut.

      Yes, a little tutorial in the next week or so might be in order. 🙂

  9. What a group of lovely pillows. And in my favorite color too. Thanks for sharing Carrie. Love them. Kay

  10. I love seeing all of these cute red and white pillows! And I love knowing that each of them were made from a mini quit pattern! … and can this also be a fun holiday project?!? woo hoo!

  11. Love all the pillows! For a 20″ pillow, how large should the block be – 21″??? What are the cut dimensions of the back?

    1. Hi Susan! For a 20″ x 20″ finished pillow, I make the top at least 20 1/2″ x 20 1/2″. Minimum. But if the block is smaller than that and I’m adding borders, I will add more to give me some leeway, especially if the top is being quilted. So I try to make the top 21″ x 21″. One good thing to remember is that most pillow covers “fit” a little bit better if they’re just a skosh smaller than the pillow form. So if you’re using a 20″ form and your finished cover is 19 1/2″ or even 19″ square, it’s probably going to work well. It’s only when it’s the rigid solid foam pillow forms that “a little small” is a really bad idea.

      The dimensions of the back are the same size as the top/front.

      For a pillow top that is 20 1/2″ x 20 1/2″, I use a 1/4″ to 3/8″ seam allowance. For the 21″ x 21″ top, use a 1/2″ to 5/8″. Also, I sew in a zipper at the “bottom” with that seam allowance based on size. 🙂

  12. I just loved this post!! Your pillows are absolutely stunning!! Now I am going to have to make some! I checked on the toweling but they all say 16 inch wide…is that correct? Your replies on making the pillows were so helpful too. Thank you❤️❤️

  13. Hi Carrie,
    Love the pillows but love the quilting too! Could you tell me the panto/pattern that was used on all the pillows. Thanks a million.

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