This Polka Dot Pumpkin Pillow is a fun and sparkly addition to your Halloween decor. Pillows are one of my favorite things to decorate with due to the versatility. When one holiday ends, you can swap out the pillow cases for the next holiday or time of year. Pillow cases are also much easier to store!
Polka Dot Design
This Polka Dot Pumpkin Pillow was a design that morphed over time. I started with angled stripes, then changed it to a basket weave, then went back to stripes. I like the stripes but it needed a little bit more. The Happy Halloween added a little more “oomph” but something was still missing. Polka dots to the rescue!
After I came up with the design, I decided to punch it up a bit by using different textures of vinyl, both flat and glitter. This combination of colors and textures really made the pumpkin shine! While I originally was going to add green leaves to the stem, I decided the sparkle of the glitter vinyl was enough. I put it all on a black pillowcase and the pumpkin just “popped”.
This was a challenging design to make and put together due to the various layers, lining them up, and getting the polka dots in the right place. I did some of the hard work for you in terms of the design, you just need to print out the layers (all the stripes of each color are in one cut, all the polka dots of each color are in one cut, etc.) and iron them on.
More Halloween Pillow designs to check out:
Polka Dot Pumpkin Pillow
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Pillow cases are a fun project to make with the Cricut machines. This particular design is deceptively complicated as mentioned above. To cut the shapes and letters I used my wonderful Cricut Maker. This thing is a crafting game changer and I can't say enough good things about it. If you're not familiar with the Cricut, read my blog post about The Amazing Cricket Maker to learn more.
Don't worry, if you don't have a Cricut machine you can use scissors or a craft cutting blade like an X-Acto Knife. I created both an SVG file and a PDF file for the design – SVG for Cricut and PDF for non-Cricut. You can get both templates for free in my Resource Library or by clicking below:
Materials Needed to Make the Polka Dot Pumpkin Pillow
- Iron-In Vinyl – I used black (stripes, polka dots), orange glitter (stripes, polka dots), and black glitter (stem)
- Blank pillow case – I used this one, a black cotton canvas pillow case.
- Cricut machine or scissors
- Cricut EasyPress 2 or an iron
- EasyPress Mat or a towel
- Parchment paper or a clean white piece of cloth or muslin (for ironing)
MAKING THE POLKA DOT PUMPKIN PILLOW
Making the Polka Dot Pumpkin Pillow is somewhat complicated. It involves cutting out the various shapes and lettering, ironing them on layer by layer, and carefully peeling off the backing so that everything adheres to the pillow case.
If you are using a Cricut to cut your design, continue on to Step 1. If you are cutting the design using scissors or an X-acto knife, skip to Step 2.
Step 1: Upload the SVG to Cricut Design Space
Download the SVG file from either the Resource Library or through the links within this post and upload it into Cricut Design Space. The file will look like this:
STEP 2: Cut the Shapes and Lettering
Next, choose your desired colors of iron-on vinyl you want to use for the designs and lettering and cut per the Cricut machine prompts or with scissors.
NOTE: When cutting Iron-on vinyl, remember to turn on Mirroring when cutting the designs. If you don't turn on Mirroring, the designs and lettering will be backwards when you transfer them to the pillow. To learn more about using mirroring with Cricut Design Space, check out this blog post.
PLEASE NOTE: If you don't have a Cricut machine and want to cut the pieces out by hand, you can use the PDF file (also available in the Resource Library) as a guide.
STEP 3: Weed the Design Pieces and Lettering
I cut all of the various layers first, then weed each layer one at a time. Iron-on vinyl is fairly easy to weed with the use of a Weeding tool and/or tweezers. I use this Weeder and the tweezers in this set (which also includes a Weeder) in all my Cricut crafts. Glitter vinyl can be a little more challenging to weed, especially with the small polka dots. Go about it slowly, keeping an eye out for each polka dot and making sure you don't miss any.
STEP 4: Ironing on the Designs and Lettering
Preheat your EasyPress to the correct temperature and time based on the type of vinyl being used (see screenshots below). You can find that information on the Cricut Heat Guide page here by plugging in the requested information.
After I enter in my desired materials for this project and click “Apply”, this is what I see:
NOTE: Before beginning the iron on process, arrange your vinyl pieces in order so you can see the complete picture.
Place the clean blank pillow case laid out flat on top of the EasyPress mat (seen below) or a towel.
Next, determine where you want to put the design and lettering. Once you have determined placement, pre-heat the pillow case based on the instructions on the Cricut Heat Guide page (it's usually about 5 seconds). Once pre-heated. apply the first layer (the one with the orange stripes) and iron on for about 5 seconds so the vinyl adheres. Allow the ironed on piece of vinyl to cool for a bit before removing the backing.
NOTE: Don't worry, you will iron all the layers for the full amount of time necessary, this is just to get the various layers in place so they can all be ironed on completely.
Once it has cooled, slowly peel away the vinyl backing making sure the vinyl is adhering to the material. If not, press the backing back down and re-iron for a few seconds. Peel away the backing slowly and carefully until the backing is completely removed.
Continue with the next layer, lining up the black rows with the already placed orange ones. Once you have them lined up, press down firmly so that the vinyl and backing sticks to the cloth. Iron for 5 seconds, allow to cool, and remove vinyl backing.
Next, place the layer with black polka dots and lettering. Line up the polka dots and lettering up to make sure they are where you want them and press down firmly. Iron for 5 seconds, allow to cool, and remove vinyl backing.
Repeat with the final layer of orange polka dots and the stem (a separate cut and color). Iron each for 5 seconds, allow to cool, and remove vinyl backing.
NOTE: I used the Cricut Spatula in this set when removing the vinyl backer after ironing with the EasyPress. The polka dots, especially the glitter ones, needed the most help and this tool allowed you to slide the vinyl backing off without damaging the polka dots.
Once the final layer is removed, cover the design with parchment paper and, using the EasyPress, iron the entire design for 30 seconds. If your EasyPress is smaller than the entire design, you may need to iron it in sections. Once ironing is complete, allow the pillow case to cool.
The pillow case is now finished and ready for the pillow.
NOTE: With each new layer I ironed on, I covered the whole thing with a piece of parchment paper. This protects the vinyl already applied while allowing you to continue ironing on the rest of the design and lettering.
That's it! Your Polka Dot Pumpkin Pillow is finished!
Where do I Get the SVG and PDF Files?
You can download the SVG and PDF files for this specific project by clicking below:
All of my free guides, how-tos, and more can also be found in my Resource Library. You can gain access to that library by clicking below: