I can’t resist Mister Domestic’s amazing fabric collections and ‘Playroom’ is no exception. I jumped into the party!
All about play, imagination, & love (all inspired by his daughter) this collection has so much heart. Since it means so much to Mat, it’s Mister Domestic through & through – his fabrics & his floor pillow pattern.
But what’s play with just one pillow? Everything’s more fun with a friend. So I sewed up two, threw in some Bitter Candy magic, and let the fun begin.
Okay, what does playtime mean to you?
I ask because that’s what was going through my mind when trying to devise a plan. As a kid, my ultimate day of play had to include SLEEPOVERS! Getting together with my closest friends eating ALL the junk food, staying up as late as we could, and watching movies & playing games in a pile of pillows. And the bigger the pillows the more fun it was! Being surrounded by those squishy rectangles – to sit on, lay on, make forts with, and to hit my pj compatriots with – always made for an amazing night!
It was kismet that Mister Domestic has a Bluprint class for floor pillows.
Little me would’ve reveled in a set of fun (and functional) squish-hexies. Adult me isn’t really any different, which you may already know as last winter I made my first Quilted Floor Pillow and LOVED the result!
After deciding on the pattern, it was time to work on the design. I love the pattern’s EPP (English paper piecing) technique for the pillow top but didn’t want the second to be an identical twin. Rather, a complimentary (or fraternal if you want to continue twinning) design.
Which brings me to a funny story….
Since finishing my first Florida-themed Quilted Floor Pillow hubby has since been hounding me to make a special one for him. How special?
“It’s gotta look like Mado”
After bursting into laughs, I said ‘sure’ but in reality I had no idea when I’d get the time (& honestly motivation) to figure out a stuffed doppelganger Mado. But it seemed like I was about to find out as I knew he would make a great companion to the quilted Playroom pillow.
Abbreviations & Techniques Galore!
What makes this an extra fun pattern is that it can be as plain or as technique-filled as you want! Here are a few I used…
EPP (aka English paper piecing)
While it can be quite varied, it’s basically a design made of up various shapes that fit together like puzzle pieces. The fabric is stabilized against thick paper, raw fabric edges are then wrapped around the back of the paper and held there with glue or thread. These prepped pieces are then sewn together by hand, one by one. Paper is then removed once all the pieces are sewn together, and then it can be used as intended. It’s a SLOW process but it’s a nice machine-free project. And with such large pieces, this specific project is a great intro to EPP.
FMQ (aka free motion quilting)
This technique is kind of like reverse drawing! Reverse because rather than moving a pen on paper to draw, here you’re moving the paper(fabric) under a stationary ‘pen’ (needle) to ‘draw’ (stitch) with a special ‘free motion’ presser foot. Some sewists are pros creating incredible detail with their machines, but I am NOT one of those people. I go in pretty much wildly sewing in hopes that it kinda-sorta-if-you-squint looks like my initial thought. So trying to make specific shapes was a bit scary! How did I do? I also did some FMQ to highlight some of Mado’s features and to tack down his stuffed tongue. How’s the resemblance?
Here a cut fabric shape is applied to a fabric backing. As it is hand-sewn to the backing the raw edge is turned under and hidden. This keeps the edge clean with no future fraying! (eek, sorry there’s no action shot of what is probably the most complicated technique of the three) Mado’s eyes & nose were attached with this method.
Consider these filling options when making your own!
While the pattern recommends polyfil, I had the inkling that it wouldn’t be enough support for my adult frame especially with the inevitable compacted fluff as time went on. So I used a different fillings for these two plus my OG pillow as an experiment.
½ Polyfil & ½ High Density Foam
Verdict- Huggably Soft
By far the cushiest seat of this trio! I packed 32oz of stuffing on top of a 3” thick 22×22” chair pad. The foam base added structure, while the fluffy top made me say ‘ahhhh’ as I sank into the softness lol. The fluffy top also gave a nice visually appealing domed top to the pillow. And with coupons, I personally found this to be the most affordable option.
High Density Foam
Verdict- Best of Both Worlds
This gave a medium-firm feel that still has a bit of bounce/sink-in effect with no fluffy top. I used two stacked 3″ thick foam chair pads (22″x22″), shaped them as needed, and left the turning gap MUCH larger. It didn’t seem like it would be a great at first (perhaps it would be too firm) but it remained comfortable even after long periods of sitting. This is my second favorite as it’s a great middle ground that manages to balance support & comfort. No matter what my ‘testers’ preferred, this cushion was always nice.
These cushions really made me think of bean bag chairs, so it was natural to try it as a filling. I managed to stuff most of a 32oz bag into the cushion before sewing it up. While probably not necessary I did make a muslin lining to hold the pellots in case it needed a washing. This was my least favorite BUT half my testers loved the ultra firm seat the best! There was no bounce or ‘sinking’ feeling with just enough give to lend to the best backside support. Keep in mind that sitting or shifting with this filling is noisy (the testers that loved it didn’t mind)! Even with a coupon, I found this filling to be the priciest of the three in my area.
Take a spin so I can look at ya!
This quilted pillow is all about fun, color, and positivity! There are a bunch of amazing words & phrases on his ‘Playroom Rules’ fabric that I ‘circled’ my favorite as my final touch – ‘everyone is welcome’. Mat of Mister Domestic is all about inclusion and this phrase is really something to live by. A map for how we should treat others. But it was so hard to narrow down my favorite that I had to feature one more on the handle – ‘use your imagination’.
And while I could talk about that front all day, I made sure that gorgeous geometry was balanced with the organic flower-filled back.
This special hubby-requested pillow (which yes, still proves that he’s still a kid at heart) shows that with some can-do attitude you can make any pattern unique to you!
The giant portrait of tiny Mado highlights his ‘classic Mado’ features: licking tongue, floppy ears, and fluffy head. So glad I went with a 3-D hanging tongue instead of an appliqued one as it really ups the cute factor to the extreme! With a predominately white front, Mat’s diamond ‘Fun Loving’ print added some much needed rainbow color to the sides.
Not that you’d ever want to turn that cute pup face away, but you may have noticed a surprise on the back. And really, even if the back isn’t always seen it’s just as worthy of beauty! The yellow back reveals a group of scribbly childhood shapes – star, flower, heart.
“Oh, what about that last one?” I hear you asking.
“…. it’s a banana.”
” . . . . “
“Why a banana?”
“Also, why does it have a face?!”
…Well, this is an extra special addition just for ultimate Mado fan-boys (which my husband is). This banana was his first toy that was soft & plush with a tiny plastic rattle inside.
It was his favorite toy until he chewed a hole right through and it was finally retired. But we all have fond memories of the cutest banana ever and now it’s forever immortalized in stitches!
Even though these pillows serve a specific purpose – sitting – that doesn’t mean they have to be boring! Mister Domestic’s line is all about play and these pillows really encapsulate that feeling! They’re quirky, fun, cute, experimental, AND (of course) comfy. Use them for more than sitting, use them for whatever your imagination dreams up! And while just as lovely as they are alone, together they’re the perfect mix of structure & freedom in stitches.
‘everyone is welcome‘!
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