Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Great Pillow Upcycle

I don't know about you, but when I buy new pillows I never seem to throw away the old ones. My excuses range from claiming they are guest pillows to worrying we'll hate the new pillows and want our old ones back.  So, when we cleaned out of storage closet a few weeks ago, we found four pillows in there that were not being used! Yikes! I knew that I needed to get rid of those pointless, hoarded pillows but I couldn't bring myself to throw them away....so I do what I always do in this situation.  I upcycled them!


With camping season upon us, John and I are realizing we are getting older. No longer can we sleep on the ground with rocks and sticks poking us all night long without waking up too sore to move.  No longer can we simply roll up a sweatshirt and use it as a makeshift pillow without tossing and turning all night long unable to get comfortable.  We've turned into the luxury-craving campers that need pillows and an air mattress and other things we swore we'd never succumb to.

Enter the first pillow upcycle project.  I hated toting two full-sized pillows with us camping. Not only do they take up too much room, but they also announce to the world that we aren't rough and tough campers anymore. After seeing some small camping pillows at a sporting goods store (for $20 each, no less), I decided to make our own camping pillows.

After ripping out the seams of the pillow, I washed the fabric in bleach and cut it in half while the stuffing was sitting in the sun.  Using my awesome new sewing machine, I was able to quickly sew 3.5 sides on both pillows to create a pillow-like shape. Sorry I don't have pictures of the process...I was too excited to stop and look for the camera.  I tore apart the stuffing to fluff it up and divided it in half.  Stuffing it into the pillow, I then sewed up the final seam and voila!

The pillows are ridiculously misforned and lumpy, but they'll work better than a rolled up sweatshirt and will hopefully reform as we sleep on them.

 When I got my sewing machine back in February, a surprise package was sent to me by my grandmother with lots of scraps of fabric and sewing essentials. One fabric reminded me of wood and camping so I decided to use it as a pillow case for the pillows.

It was the perfect amount for two pillow cases - which are a must when camping.  Gotta wash all that smokey, camping smell off when you get home!

So, that is how I turned an old, hoarded pillow into two awesome camping pillows.  I'll let you know how they work later this week - we're heading camping for a few days and are eager to try them out.

Oh, and stay tuned for the other things I made with the extra pillows!


Christine said...

Lol, I am way past the pillow point and pressuring my boyfriend to fix up his motorhome! I love upcycling pillows, I never throw them away.....

Rebbie said...

The woodsy fabric is very nice for your camping pillows. I must be really old because I take 2 big pillows when we camp.

AsylumTanya said...

I go through pillows very quickly and I never know what to do with the used ones. I have four pillows in my closet right now waiting for me to figure out what to do with them. Thanks for the inspiration!

Junky Vagabond said...

HA! I do the same thing and have old pillows everywhere :) Great idea for my pillows that-cannot-be-thrown-away!

Lauren @ My Wonderfully Made said...

These are great for traveling in general! Even our college age kids want pillows when we travel and who wants to drag along a big one -- these are perfect!

D+B said...

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Unknown said...

I know just what you mean....I used to be such a rough-n-tough camper. But, once I tried sleeping on an air mattress in the tent I just gave in to temptation. Those pillows are such a good idea. Pillows always take up *so much room* in all of the camping gear.

Carly said...

Hello, I just read 2 of your posts and I think I like your blog! ;) I read your newest post and the camping pillows! I also save my retired pillows, I feel like there must me a use for them! I do like your make 2 smaller pillows idea! I am also a very new blogger, I do love blogging! I am your newest follower!
Have an amazing weekend! I'm also working on my home on a frugal budget.
Carly ;)

Quikr.com said...

Nice stuff & Great collection of Pillow. I will bookmark this page.
Camping pillow

Foam-By-Mail said...

There are much worse things to keep around than old pillows, hah! You can always re-use the fiberfill in a new project or pillow, and you never know when you'll need to use an old case as a makeshift bag, sack, or fabric scrap.

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