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Family Photo to Pillow & Throw




Hi Guys, just wanted to show you how you could take ONE Yard of fabric and make an awesome throw and matching pillow! This would be great for your home or even as an easy gift! So let’s get started. First, let’s gather all the photographs and images we’ll need. We will be making this as a gift for the Sanders family, so we chose to incorporate the state of texas image, a scanned version of the family signature, and the date Stephanie and her husband were married.


Designing the Pillow & Throw


    • High-Quality Family Photo
    • Decoration in PNG format w/ a transparent background
    • Family signature in PNG format w/ a transparent background


When choosing a photo to fill the blanket, we need to make sure it is a very high-quality photo as it is being stretched to nearly 4 feet long! A low-quality image will not be able to be stretched this large as it will lose clarity and crispness.

Below are a few videos that may help you achieve some of the more custom elements we have added to our project.

Now that we have everything we need, let’s set up our workspace! After opening up the Fabric Creator, we will need to adjust the size of the workspace to 36″wide by 54″ high. Click on the Pattern button to open this menu.

Next, we will draw guidelines in our workspace to divide up our one yard into 2 pillow panels and our blanket. The first line will need to be 14″ down from the top of the blanket. This can be done by going to Add → Polygon and drawing a line across the width of the fabric. It is ok if it is not straight as you can go to Edit → Shape and this will allow you to adjust the nodes till they are straight.

 Node: when using the Polygon Tool, the blue or white dots that appear when drawing a new shape.


Repeat this process to draw a vertical line dividing the small section in HALF at 18 inches.

Now we can insert our blanket photo, you will most likely have to crop your photo to 36″ by 40″ or at a 9 by 10 ratio before adding to the Fabric Creator workspace. Once cropped you can go to Add → Image to insert your family photo and stretch to fit.

Using the instruction from the “Add → Image” Section above, insert all additional images and decorations to your workspace. As each item is added, you can start to play with the placement and sizing of each item.

Optional: Using photoshop we were able to insert their family photo into our Texas shape giving it a fun frame for our pillow! You can find a video on how to do that HERE.

Now We can add additional names, family sayings or any other text using our Text Tool! To add a new text box go to Add→Text. You will need a separate box for each phrase, date or name you decide to add to the workspace.

This looks great! Now a few extra steps to get this to print out correctly and then we can get stitching!



So we are done designing and we need to rotate our work so it still fits into ONE yard! For everyone’s sanity, we decided to do all our design work with our images upright. Otherwise, we’d look like these familiar girls below with our heads tilted at our screens as we worked… OUCH!

Below is the current orientation or our design, as it is it will print over two yards of fabric…what a waste! By rotating it on its side, our design will now snugly fit in one yard of fabric! YAYYY!

To make this adjustment, go to the Pattern button and flip the sizes in the height and width boxes. Your new dimensions should read Width: 54″ by Height: 36″. This will essentially turn our workspace from vertical to horizontal which is what we need.

Once you have turned your workspace to a horizontal orientation you will also have to rotate all your work to fit in the new space. You can easily do this by “clicking & Dragging” a box around EVERYTHING you have made, then going to Edit → Rotate Left.

You’re Ready to Print! You can do this by going to the Process Fabric button at the top right of your page. Once the next page loads, choose your fabric and quantity. We have chosen to print on our Organic Cotton Interlock for this project.

Note: If you choose a fabric with a smaller printable area than 54″ wide, your design will not fit and will be cut off on one end.





Using our printed guidelines, cut the fabric to separate the blanket and both pillow pieces. You will also need to cut off any white fabric from around the blanket section. For the pillow pieces, you will have to pull out your trustee rulers and fabric marking tools to measure out your 18″ by 14″ panels to remove the excess white fabric.


Pro Tip: Save your scrap fabric to test all your stitching before sewing on your project fabric. Doing this helps ensure your final seams are pucker-free!

After doing some trial and error with a few different stitches and stabilizers, we decided to use Exquisite by DIME Fusible No Show Mesh to help reduce any puckering when sewing. It was one of a few options in our stash but turned out the best! There are fusible knit hem tapes that you can buy but if you have any lightweight mesh stabilizers on hand (that is appropriate for knit fabrics) these should work just fine, test a few swatches on your scrap fabric before using on your main fabric.

We will need to cut our stabilizer into strips to fuse to the edge of our fabric. Our roll of stabilizer is 12″ wide so we will need about 15 strips cut 1/2″ wide to go around our entire blanket. For our pillow pieces, we will need about 12 strips cut at 5/8″ wide.

Next, iron your fusible stabilizer all the way around your blanket and pillow pieces. When using fusible stabilizer make sure to face the shiny side down onto your fabric, facing AWAY from your iron, the shiny side is the heat-activated glue. Once fused, use the tape as a guide to press your fabric 1/2″ up all the way around.

Pro Tip: Shiny Side up means you fused the stabilizer to your iron….not that I’m speaking from personal experience 😅😅😅

Using the example below as a guide you can create a Mitered Corner, giving your blanket a clean and finished look. Pin your mitered corner into place and sew a narrow zig-zag stitch over the raw edge of your blanket all the way around. And the Blanket is DOONNNEEE! Now onto the pillow!

For your pillow, pin both pieces right sides together making sure to mark an 8″ opening along the bottom of the pillow. Using a narrow zig-zag stitch, sew a 1/2″ seam around your pillow, leaving an 8″ opening in the seam that we will later use to insert your pillow form.

We are almost ready to turn our pillowcase right side out! Before we can do this we need to clip our corners as close to the stitching as possible without cutting into your seam. Clipping away the excess fabric will help create nice sharp corners!


Now flip your pillowcase right side out, insert your 14″x18″ pillow form and pin the opening shut. Using an Invisible Stitch, hand sew the opening of your pillow closed.


And that’s it! Using just one yard of fabric and an afternoon of your time, you now have a fun and easy custom printed gift that everyone will LOVE!



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