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DIY: Easy Three-Fabric Decorative Pillows

Last Updated on December 18, 2012 by Kristi Linauer

I finally made some pillows for my banquette. I made a total of four pillows last night, but I’m only certain that I like two of them…these little three-fabric pieced pillows. I think they add just enough color and texture to be interesting, without being overpowering next to my chevron table.

They were really so easy to make. In fact, they were so easy, that I didn’t even bother to take pictures of the process. I think that if you know how to make pillows, it’s pretty self-explanatory. Just use three different fabrics (I used white cotton duck cloth, a striped canvas, and linen in a natural color), and sew the pieces together to make the front. Then you can use my tutorial for how to make a simple throw pillow to finish up the pillow. Or you can put a zipper in the pillow cover for easy removal and washing.

Now I just need to decide what other pillows I want to use. I made two other pillows last night…one out of my valance fabric, and another lumbar pillow out of the striped fabric. It just doesn’t look right to me.

I’ve tried arranging them different ways, but I didn’t find any arrangement that I like. I was trying to break out of my comfort zone, and go with an asymmetrical look, but I just can’t do it. I like symmetry, and while I can handle asymmetry at times, most of the time it drives me crazy. I’m also not crazy about the lumbar pillow being covered in that striped fabric. It looks too busy and overpowering. That stripe is definitely a case of “less is more”. So I’m back to the drawing board on that one.

I’ve seriously been searching for pillow ideas for two weeks now. Why am I having such a hard time with this decision?! I just can’t seem to get it right. But what I do know is that the little 3-fabric pillows are here to stay. I really do like those.

Now I just need to find some pillows/fabric that will play nice with pillows! Any ideas? I’m all ears!

This project was for my condo breakfast room makeover. Click here to see the whole before and after of the breakfast room makeover.

Or click on the thumbnails below to see other DIY projects that I did for my condo breakfast room makeover.

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    You didn’t show us much of the valance fabric pillow, but it looks good. If you have enough of that fabric, maybe make the lumbar pillow with that? Or maybe the lumbar pillow in the same 3 fabric style with the valance fabric instead of the stripes? Regardless, I’m sure you’ll find a great solution!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    I really love these! The paisley throws me off, I think. I, too, like (require) symmetry so maybe the lumbar with the vertical stripes through the middle and for top/bottom use the natural linen?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    I really like what we can see of the valance fabric…I too would use that for the lumbar pillow. As for the smaller current valance-fabric pillow, maybe make another one for the other side to make it symmetrical. I’m not a fan of the asymmetrical look either.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 7:47 pm

    They all look great together….. leave as is! Striking!!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    My vote is to make the lumbar pillow out of the paisley and flank it with the two pillows you like and call it done!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Diane | An Extraordinary Day
    October 25, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    And I like them too!! The pillow made of the valance fabric is hiding? Yes? I’m pretty sure that would be lovely as well….just needs to be larger….and maybe you need 3?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    Use something that has more of the darker teal that’s in the wood trim/cabinets–and/or something with a pop of orange.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    one idea……first, love them. how about taking a piece of material that matches one of the greens in your lumbar pillow. cut a swath of material that covers the middle row of the verticle stripes, leaving the print to only peek out from under the solid fabric, thus reducing the “busy” pattern and making the color the focus. it could be appliqued or a button-on addition. just a thought. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 25, 2012 at 10:26 pm

    I *love* the three-fabric pillows! But as a suggestion, I think I’d do the lumbar one in the neutral linen and then do a fun green felt fabric or bring some texture in? I agree with the pop of orange, that’s a good option too 🙂 Lookin’ great though!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Maxie Sykes
    October 25, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    The good things about lumbar pillow is that it can be placed anywhere in your living space.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Jenny Ballard
    October 26, 2012 at 5:04 am

    I’m with Liz…I love them as they are. Particularly the paisley.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 26, 2012 at 7:06 am

    I agree that the asymmetrical look isn’t right. (Use the 4th pillow as a gift for Christmas or elsewhere in your home?) I do like the lumbar pillow but maybe covered in the neutral fabric to tone it down a bit. I like the stripe but it might be just a little too much with the table top but I like the three pillow effect. Good luck!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Barbara @ DIY Home Staging Tips
    October 26, 2012 at 9:53 am

    Another vote for using the paisley for the lumbar. Or, make the lumbar a solid and add the paisley as trim or on one side only (reversible). Agree about the symmetry. I like that you arranged them mirror-style, with both oatmeal linen sections facing in.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 26, 2012 at 11:16 am

    I LOVE these pillows! Love the lumbar pillow…I would never change that one. The fabric has impact, yet the size is more “humble”. Love the combo fabric pillows…your idea just solved a dilemma for me as I have been trying to figure out how to combine new fabric. Great job!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    October 26, 2012 at 6:05 pm

    I’d totally go for the natural linen in the lumbar pillow. The valance fabric is also very busy, and I think you’d have the same issue if you used that instead of the stripe. LOVING the 3-fabric pillows!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa T
    October 26, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    Love the two that you like, too! The linen is gorgeous. Why not make a larger pillow with the linen and then you might still be able to use the lumbar, or even two linen medium sized pillows. The linen would help calm all the patterns/stripes. Also, you could stencil/ monogram the linen pillow. Just some thoughts, but I know you will come up with someone that looks fab!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Vicki Davis
    October 28, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    The fabrics are great! I would consider making a “bumper” pillow out of the valiance (paisley) fabric then setting it between the two three fabric pillows, or make a bumper pillow out of a fabric that incorporates the color of the wood counter tops at both sides. Love it !!!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Recreate and Decorate
    October 29, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    love them! the colors are just right!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    DIY: Decorative Pillows With Variegated Yarn Design
    November 19, 2012 at 10:01 am

    […] decided to start over with the pillows on my banquette.  The other pillows that I made just weren’t doing anything for me, and as some of you mentioned, they were just too small.  […]

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Re-reupholstered Dining Chairs
    December 10, 2012 at 10:38 am

    […] Well, I’ve reupholstered my dining chairs…again.  This time I used two fabrics — a striped fabric and white duck cloth, both of which I used on these easy-to-make three-fabric pillows. […]

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    July 9, 2013 at 12:51 am

    Could not agree much more! You succeeder

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    September 3, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    I love the fabrics! Any chance you could let me know where I could get the blue and green striped fabric? I’m looking to recover my window cushion with these colors! Thank you!