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Friday, 28 September 2012

Storybook Craft Project - Elmer Cushion Tutorial

Welcome to week three of the Storybook Craft Project! This week I am sharing this cushion cover inspired by the much loved multi-coloured elephant - Elmer by David McPhee.


This is a fairly simple cushion although it is a little tedious in that you need 207 2" squares. But honestly...get a good film on in the background or work your way through the Friends box set (again!) like me and it will get done soon enough!

I picked up a great set of Rainbow fat quarters at the Malvern Quilt Show in May which were perfect for the project!

Fat quarters in rainbow colours (black, orange, green, blue, red, pink, white)

1. Cut a 2" square out of card and a 1 1/2" square. These are your templates

2. Using the 2" template to draw the squares, cut out 207 squares - roughly the same number from each colour

3. Draw round the smaller square template into the middle of the fabric square - this is a guide for where you will be sewing the squares together (essentially marks out your seam allowance - so technically optional - its up to you whether you want this guidance)

4. Lay out the squares in the desired arrangement making sure that the same colours don't touch. The front is made up of 9 x 9 squares whereas the two back pieces (to make an envelope cushion) are 7 x 9 each

5. Sew squares together following seam allowance marks until you have one row (9 squares). Repeat with other rows.

6. Pin the first two rows together. Make sure that you have matched up the squares so that the joins are aligned from row to row. Sew the rows together and repeat with next row until you have completed front and both back pieces.

7. Hem the bottom of each back piece

8. Pin one back piece to the top of the front (right sides together) and the other back piece to the bottom and sew round the whole square. This forms the envelope back of the pillow.

9. Turn right side out 

And that's it! An Elmer cushion! Thanks for joining me again! I hope to see you next week for a cushion inspired by Roald Dahl's BFG! 

Have a great weekend!


  1. Gorgeous, but wow that's a lot of work, very impressive! I shall have to find out what my nephews are in to these days as they are 8 in November so maybe I could make them a cushion (cheapskate? Me? Yep!)

    (I'm re-watching Friends (again!) - on series 3 now)

  2. Ack! I love this one! Like instantly I could tell it was Elmer! What a sweet story and your pillow completely reflects it perfectly! You rock, my dear!


  3. What a fun pillow! So colorful! And the tutorial is really well written and easy to understand too. Thanks for stopping by Pinner Takes All. Your new fan from across the pond. (Although the hubby is from the UK if that counts. :-) ).

    1. Thanks for the lovely comment! I'm glad you liked the tutorial! Have a great day!

  4. Cute pillow, my son would love one of these xx

  5. What a great way to incorporate stories and crafting! I'm excited to follow this series :o)

    Thanks for joining Keep Calm & Link Up last week! We hope to see you again this Thursday evening! xo, Meredith @ www.waittilyourfathergetshome.com

  6. Love this! I love Elmer and can't wait to use the story in my classroom; having an Elmer pillow would top it off! Now I just need to find the time and patience to make it :)

  7. We've been reading this book! My son just brought it home :)


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