green white and yellow crocheted granny squares for a pillow

The Magic of Crocheted Pillows: A Cozy Touch for Home Decor

The Rise of Crocheted Pillows: A Timeless Trend

Crocheted pillows have found their place in the world of interior decor, adding a touch of warmth and nostalgia to homes. They’ve made a remarkable resurgence in recent years, captivating craft enthusiasts and interior designers’ hearts.

But did you know that the immense popularity of crocheted pillows stretches back to the 1970s? In this guide, we’ll explore the fascinating history of crocheted pillows, delve into the art of creating them, uncover the benefits of using crochet for home decor, and more.

The 1970s Revival: A Pillowy Flashback

A Vintage Comeback of Crocheted Pillows

The story of crocheted pillows is a testament to the cyclical nature of fashion and design trends. While they may seem like a recent sensation, these cozy accessories experienced their first wave of popularity during the 1970s. The ’70s were a time of self-expression, and the DIY spirit was in full swing. People sought ways to infuse their homes with character and warmth, and crocheted pillows were a perfect fit.

During this era, vibrant and earthy color palettes and intricate patterns took center stage. Crocheted pillows offered a creative outlet, allowing crafters to experiment with textures, colors, and designs. Crochet pillows from this era are making a comeback and are trendy as decor items. The results were often whimsical and bohemian, reflecting the free-spirited nature of the times.

The Iconic Granny Square

One cannot delve into the history of crocheted pillows without mentioning the ever-popular granny square. This simple yet versatile crochet motif became synonymous with ’70s decor. Crafters used granny squares to create everything from afghans to ponchos, but the granny square blocks found a special place in the world of couch pillows.

The granny square’s appeal lies in its adaptability. Crafters could easily combine various colors to create eye-catching patterns, making it a perfect choice for fashion or personalized home decor. These granny stitch squares were then sewn together to form pillow covers, and the crafty boho pillow brings bursts of color and nostalgia to living rooms and bedrooms.

Crafting Your Own Crochet Throw Pillows

Getting Started

A crocheted pillow is a satisfying project that allows you to infuse your personal style into your living space. If you’re new to crochet, don’t worry; it’s a craft that welcomes beginners with open arms. When you learn the chain stitch and how to single crochet, the entire world of crocheting will be open to you.

Materials You’ll Need for Your New Pillow

  • Yarn: Choose a yarn in the color and texture you desire. Thicker yarns work well for pillows, creating a plush look and feel.
  • Crochet Hook: The size of your hook should match the yarn’s thickness. Check the yarn label for recommendations. Crochet hook sets are quite affordable and allow you to shift hook sizes to accommodate the gauge needed for each project.
  • Pillow Form: Select a pillow form or stuffing material to fit your desired pillow size and shape. A circular pillow insert will result in round pillows that pair well with rectangular pillows in a grouping.
  • Yarn Needle: You’ll use this for weaving in loose yarn ends and sewing the outer edges of the pillow cover. Some crochet hook kits will include yarn needles.
  • Crochet Patterns: There are many free crochet pillow patterns available on the internet and on Ravelry, or design your own pillow pattern using some basic crochet stitches like the woven stitch, half double crochet, or double crochet stitch. These crochet stitches in a simple pattern make an easy crochet pillow that is ideal as a couch throw pillow or a support pillow for a chair. For more advanced crochet techniques, don’t be intimidated. Use a video tutorial to learn a new crochet stitch and elevate your skills while creating a design you’ll love.

How to Make a Crocheted Pillow

Follow these basic steps to crochet your pillow cover:

Step 1: Choose a Stitch Pattern

Select a stitch pattern that suits your style. Common choices include single crochet, double crochet, and granny squares. Experiment with colors and textures to create a unique design. You can use free crochet pillow patterns or invest in a collection of crochet pillow patterns for an endless stream of inspiration.

Step 2: Measure Your Pillow Form

Pillow forms come in different types of fill, or what is inside. The most common is a polyester fill. However, you may find inserts made with feathers, buckwheat hulls, wool, or foam. You can also create your own pillow form and create custom sizes and shapes. Measure your pillow form’s dimensions to determine your pillow cover size. You’ll want it to fit snugly but not too tightly.

Step 3: Make a Gauge Swatch

Begin by crocheting a small swatch to determine your gauge. This ensures that your pillow cover will be the correct size with consideration of the yarn weight and the crochet hook size. The crochet pillow pattern will indicate the expected swatch dimensions to compare against your swatch to determine any necessary adjustments.

Step 4: Crochet the Front and Back Panels

Crochet two identical panels for the front and back of your pillow cover. You can use the same stitch pattern or mix it up for added flair.

Step 5: Assembly

Once both panels are complete, sew them together, leaving an opening for inserting the pillow insert. Then, securely close the opening. Consider adding embellishments like pom poms or elegant tassels on the corners.

Step 6: Final Touches

Weave in any loose ends, and your crochet pillow cover is ready to display in your space.

This is the whole process for a fun project that is both practical and elegant to elevate your home decor. When you finish, take a photo for your Pinterest board and share your creation with social media.

A Brown Basket on Top of a Stack of Yarn
Photo by Pavel Danilyuk

The Benefits of Crocheted Pillows for Home Decor

A Touch of Handmade Charm

In a world of mass-produced goods, crocheted pillows offer a unique appeal—the touch of the handmade. Each stitch is a labor of love, and this craftsmanship imparts a special warmth to your decor. Whether your style is rustic, bohemian, or minimalist, cozy crochet pillows can be tailored to fit seamlessly into your aesthetic.

Versatile Design Options

One of the greatest advantages of crocheted pillows is their versatility. With countless stitch patterns, color combinations, and yarn textures at your disposal, you can craft pillows that perfectly complement your space. From vintage-inspired granny squares to modern geometric designs, the possibilities are endless.

Sustainable Decor

As sustainability gains importance in interior design, crochet pillows are a sustainable choice. By opting for handmade, locally sourced materials, you contribute to a more eco-friendly home. Additionally, crochet allows you to upcycle old yarn or repurpose fabric remnants, reducing waste and environmental impact.

Customizable Comfort

Crocheted pillows offer more than aesthetic appeal; they also provide comfort. You can adjust the level of cushioning by choosing the appropriate pillow form or stuffing. This customization ensures that your crocheted pillows are not only beautiful but also functional and comfortable.

Exploring Creative Variations

white and brown crocheted textile pillow
Textured Pillow Cover for Home Decor

Textured Delights: Bobble and Popcorn Stitches

Elevate your crocheted pillows with textured stitches like bobble stitch or popcorn stitch. These three-dimensional embellishments add depth and character to your designs. Experiment with different yarns and color combinations to make your pillows truly pop.

Color Play: Ombré and Gradient Effects

Play with color gradients and ombré effects to take your crocheted pillows to the next level. Transitioning from one color to another in a seamless blend creates a stunning visual impact. Self-striping yarn and ombre tones can transform a simple design into a work of art. Whether you prefer a subtle shift or a bold contrast, this technique offers endless possibilities.

The Enchanting World of Crochet Appliqués

Consider adding crochet appliqués to your pillow covers. These small, decorative motifs can depict anything from flowers to animals, allowing you to infuse a touch of whimsy into your decor. Appliqués provide a creative outlet to showcase your crochet skills.

Caring for Your Crocheted Pillows

Gentle Cleaning

To ensure the longevity of your crocheted pillows, opt for gentle cleaning methods. Remove the pillow form, and hand wash the cover using a mild detergent. Gently squeeze out excess water and reshape the cover while damp. Allow it to air dry to maintain its shape and texture.

Storage Tips

Store your crocheted pillows in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight when not in use. To prevent dust and dirt buildup, place them in a breathable storage bag or pillowcase.

Crocheted Pillows: Timeless Elegance

In conclusion, crocheted pillows have woven their way into the fabric of home decor, offering a timeless elegance that transcends trends. From their humble beginnings in the 1970s to their modern resurgence, these cozy accessories continue to captivate with their handmade charm and versatility. Crafting your own crocheted pillows allows you to personalize your space, embrace sustainability, and revel in the comfort of customizable cushions.

So, whether you’re a novice, advanced beginner, or experienced crocheter, consider adding crocheted pillows to your decor repertoire. You can never have too many pillows. These tactile and visually appealing accessories are fun to make and ideal for creating home appeal with cozy decor pieces.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: What type of yarn is best suited for crocheting pillows, and how much will I need for a standard-sized pillow?

A: Opt for a yarn with a balanced blend of durability and softness for crocheting pillows. Worsted-weight yarn, such as acrylic or cotton, works well. Approximately 800-1000 yards of yarn should suffice for a standard-sized pillow. However, the exact amount can vary based on your chosen stitch pattern and hook size. Bulky yarn and super bulky yarn will require less yardage. Refer to the pattern specifications for guidance.

Q: Can I use a different crochet stitch pattern for my pillow, or is there a recommended one?

A: Absolutely! Crocheting allows for a variety of stitch patterns, so feel free to explore and express your creativity. For beginners, a simple single crochet or half-double crochet pattern works well. Advanced crocheters might enjoy experimenting with more intricate stitches like cables or popcorn stitches. Just ensure that your chosen pattern accommodates the pillow’s intended use and provides the desired level of comfort. While a texture design may be perfect for a couch pillow, consider softer textures for a neck pillow.

Q: How do I determine the right pillow size for my crochet project?

A: The appropriate pillow size depends on your preference and the pillow’s intended use. Common dimensions for decorative throw pillows are 16×16 inches or 18×18 inches. For larger floor pillows, consider dimensions of 24×24 inches or more. Measure your pillow form and adjust your crochet project accordingly to account for stitch tension and any desired borders or edgings.

Q: What’s the best way to neatly secure and finish off my crocheted pillow project?

A: To achieve a polished finish, start by weaving in the yarn ends with a yarn needle, securing them tightly to prevent unraveling. To join panels with a seamless look, the slip stitch is ideal. Additionally, consider adding a border or edging to enhance the overall aesthetic and reinforce the edges. Always take your time with the finishing touches for a professional and durable outcome.

Q: Can I wash and care for my crocheted pillow with my usual laundry activities, or does it require special attention?

A: Most crocheted pillows can be conveniently cared for with proper consideration. Refer to the yarn label for specific washing instructions. Generally, machine washing on a gentle cycle with mild detergent and air drying is suitable for many yarns. If your pillow includes delicate embellishments, hand washing is recommended. It’s wise to remove the pillow form before washing and reshape the cover as needed during drying to maintain its original size.

Q: Where Can I Find Free Crochet Pillow Patterns

A: There are many online resources where you can discover free crochet pillow patterns. Websites like Ravelry, AllFreeCrochet, Lion Brand, and Annie’s offer a wide range of patterns suitable for various skill levels. Additionally, many crochet bloggers share their patterns for free, allowing you to explore different styles and techniques without any cost. Here are a few of my favorites:

Happy crocheting!

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