Pouf! How to make your own floor pillows*

As part of the Re-Energized By Design project, I was able to finally conquer some demon-fears and really get to some real creating. I’ve owned a sewing machine for at least 5 years — even took a sewing class — and hadn’t touched it since we moved in to our house here. I had these fantasies of making my own curtains and pillows, and I was afraid to even turn it on.

When the living room challenge rolled around and we had LOTS to do with very little funds, I went into full thrift mode and found as many groovy fabrics as I could at the Goodwill outlet. I had good luck — and thankfully, a talented seamstress of a friend who would help me re-upholster a mid-century chair. But we needed more than just a chair — so I decided to figure out how to make a basic floor pouf cube out of a cool herringbone printed tweed I found all by myself. I had a willing tutor if I needed it, which helped.

A cube has 6 sides, all the same size, so figuring out measurements and assembly was pretty easy. I cut out six 16×16 inch squares, pinned them together so that the herringbone was alternating on every side, and then just sewed it. Filling it was another matter, and I tried a combination of shredded denim and poly-fill to no luck. I ended up cutting up a haggard old egg-crate mattress and stacking squares of it inside like a layer cake, and using the poly fill to even it out. It worked, but I think I may have filled it too full. This is likely the reason we lost the challenge (hyperbole).

I was still incredibly proud of my product, and also caught a scorching case of sewing fever as a result. So I decided I wanted to make another pouf. More of a rectangle. And use old burlap coffee bags. So I did.
I lined the burlap with muslin to help give some strength to the fabric and keep it from fraying at the cut edges. And I re-enlisted the egg-crate filling, but filled it less, and I’m much happier with the result. Mark has been using it as a meditation pillow, but I’ve also spied Biscuits enjoying it a few times. And I think they look pretty similar to much more expensive things I’ve seen at places like West Elm, but at NOWHERE NEAR the cost. Sexy, oui?

Here’s what you’ll need:
1 burlap coffee bag (150 lb capacity)
1 yard of muslin or an old white sheet
foam, egg-crate style or something with some density.
sewing machine
And that’s it! Pretty simple, huh?

*Or, conversely, I could make them for you. Let me know, guys!

–The Baroness

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  1. I can’t wait to try and make on of these! I think this would be great on my patio for summer BBQ’s =}

  2. Love it! This is a project that I’ve been dying to make. I wonder if foam core would be too stiff… I could totally see a bunch of these for out on the porch.

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