Monday, November 10, 2014

Joy & Believe Pillows - New Knitting Pattern with Felt Appliqué

One of my favorite things to do is design and make Christmas ornaments.  Last year, I designed and published two Christmas ornament patterns.  This year I've been designing and knitting a lot of pillows so it's not surprising that my newest pattern is....a Christmas themed pillow.

I designed and made the "Joy" Pillow for my mom because she has been saying for months that I should design a "Joy" themed pillow.  I can't tell you how many times I would tell her about my latest knitting pattern and she would be interested and supportive as always....but add "are you working on the Joy pillow design?"  Well, I was working on just took a while for it to really come together in my mind.  Like a lot of my patterns, I think about the design for quite a while before I start knitting.  I am so thrilled with how the "Joy" pillow turned out that I could not wait to give it to my mom.  She stopped by the other day to visit and I gave her an early Christmas gift....she loved it, of course!

Joy & Believe Pillows Knitting Pattern - with Felt Applique
I couldn't stop with just the "JOY" design....I also made another pillow with "Believe" felt applique letters.

The "Joy & Believe Pillows" knitting pattern is available on Ravelry and in my Etsy shop.

Pattern includes patterns for both JOY and Believe letter designs.

My new "Joy & Believe Pillows" knitting pattern includes full size patterns for the felt applique designs to make both the "JOY" and the "Believe" designs.  I love this letter style!  I searched around and looked at a lot of different font styles before settling on this letter design.  In the pattern, you'll find that the letter patterns are already full size....all you have to do is print the page and cut out the paper letter patterns and you are ready to go.  No resizing of the patterns needed!  (It drives me crazy when I have to enlarge pattern pieces on the copy machine to get the right size!)

This is a quick and easy knitting project.  It is knit flat and seamed.  With super bulky yarn and big needles it is easy to finish this pillow project in a weekend or just a couple evenings.  (If you need a last minute DIY gift...this could be the one!)

I used Loops & Threads Cozy Wool super bulky yarn in the color 'Claret'.  This is a bright, traditional Christmas red.  I really like this yarn for pillows because it is very soft to the touch.  This yarn is inexpensive but has a very nice appearance.  You can find Loops & Threads Cozy Wool at Michael's Craft Store in the U.S.  This pattern will work will with just about any super bulky weight yarn.  

This pillow would look great in many color combinations.  It would be fun to knit the pillow in white and use red felt for the letters with white stitching.  Or, for a year round look (happy words like "joy" and "believe" never go out of season!) it would look nice in a neutral light tan and white combination.  Or, Loops & Threads Cozy Wool comes in a beautiful dark gray called 'Granite' (reminds me of an old chalkboard).  I'd love to try that color with white letters and use either charcoal gray or red embroidery floss for the applique stitches.   

Other supplies needed include a 12" x 16" pillow form (an inexpensive, basic pillow form is perfect), some nice quality felt, DMC embroidery floss, and basic sewing and crafting supplies.  A good quality pair of scissors (such as sewing shears) is helpful for cutting out the felt letters.

Speaking of felt....I recommend wool blend or good quality polyester felt.  Try to stay away from the inexpensive "craft felt" in the kids crafting section of the craft store.  Most fabric stores carry a nicer quality felt by the yard.  Small quilt shops often carry wool blend felt.  I also like Sweet Emma Jean's Etsy Shop.  They have an incredible selection of felt in many beautiful colors.  You can pick your own colors and get a custom set of 9" x 12" wool blend felt sheets.

Detailed finishing instructions included in the pattern.
This pattern includes detailed, step-by-step finishing instructions.  The finishing is not hard.  But, I put a lot of thought into providing you all the details of how to finish the pillow so that you can obtain the best results possible.  That's why I include every step (such as placing a piece of thin cardboard inside the knitting so it makes it easier to stitch the felt letters in place) and provide lots of close up photos like the one above.

I used some of my ribbon collection and old light bulbs for props.

I had so much fun taking the photos for this new pattern.  I have a box filled with pieces of previously used ribbon...lots of holiday plaids and red and white polka dots.  I also have a set of beautiful ribbons and baker's twine that my mom gave me several years ago.  They are so pretty I've never used an inch of any of the ribbons and twines!  The original set of seven spools are always displayed on a bookshelf at our house.  Look for these in future knitting pattern listing photos.  It was fun to use the spool shapes and texture of the ribbons to add to the holiday theme.  

"Joy & Believe Pillows" Knitting Pattern - available on Etsy
If you have looked at my other knitting pattern listing photos, you have probably noticed a wood cabinet in the background of several photos.  I love being able to use the shelf in the center of the cabinet to change the scene.  The white pedestal candy dish in the photo above was my grandmother's.  The Santa hiding in the shadows is metal and extremely heavy!  Most of my Christmas decorations are hidden away in boxes right now but that heavy Santa was sitting in the "Christmas" closet where I could reach him so he got to be in the photo.

I love combining the textures of knitting with felt applique. My Mini Mitten Christmas Ornament and The Little House knitting patterns both have felt applique. I'm excited to add the Joy & Believe Pillows knitting pattern to my collection.  And...I have a couple more patterns in the works which will add to the felt applique word theme.  Check back soon!

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