Pants Pillows

Posted on April 30, 2009 by Allie

We were in desperate need of some throw pillows.  I eyed some pretty ones at the store, but, for one thing, the pair I liked was $60, and I’m a tightwad, and for another, with two dogs and a cat, everything we own needs to be rugged, and the pretty ones were made from a delicately woven fabric.  And, whenever I shop, the great green mantra goes through my head: Why buy new when you can make do with what you have?

I had a stack of J’s worn out old khakis in the basement.  I cut them in pieces, avoiding the worn out patches at the knees and any stains.  I stitched the pieces together like a crazy quilt to make big enough pieces of fabric to form both sides of each pillow.  Then I sewed them up, and stuffed them with fiber fill from some old bed pillows that had seen better days.

I’m still learning how to use my sewing machine, so they certainly aren’t perfect, but they will do.  I love the textures of the old seams and pocket pieces and the color variation.  And, I also love that they didn’t cost me anything or require any new materials (other than thread).

What’s your favorite way to make do?  How do you avoid buying new things?


  1. Hey, those are cool! I would totally buy them in a store.

    April 30th, 2009 at 9:28 am
    Comment by nancypearlwannabe
  2. I avoid buying lots of stuff by making my own. The main things are bread, yogurt, and laundry detergent, but during the summers my boyfriend (who’s the ace canner) will make blackberry jelly from the blackberries that grow rampant here. He’s also good at making mead, so maybe this year we’ll have a few wines.

    I’m pretty handy with our old sewing machine (this thing dates from the ’50s) but I haven’t used it much, except to make a tablecloth and Christmas presents. I haven’t managed to find the time to make my own pants, but that’s not exactly an urgent event, so I can wait.

    April 30th, 2009 at 9:33 am
    Comment by Jules
  3. Very creative. They look good. Nice job, especially considering you’re still learning to use a sewing machine.

    April 30th, 2009 at 10:10 am
    Comment by Dash
  4. Great idea! And so cute!

    April 30th, 2009 at 11:28 am
    Comment by courtney
  5. Allie, these pillows are INCREDIBLE! I love them! You are so creative!! I WANT to be this resourceful!!! WTG!!! :)

    April 30th, 2009 at 11:58 am
    Comment by Lauren
  6. yeah repurposing! those look great! did you see my bath towel robe? why buy fabric, eh?

    April 30th, 2009 at 12:48 pm
    Comment by maria
  7. Very cool pillows allie! You sell your sewing abilities short. Some of the things I reuse are pop bottles for “topsy Turvy” upside down tomato planters (Thanks Cheap Vegetable Gardener)Cardboard for weed block, old sheets for weedblock, Going to attempt a simular project to yours- making a shopping bag out of an old pair of jeans

    April 30th, 2009 at 2:38 pm
    Comment by robj98168
  8. What a great idea! I’ve got an old green cordoroy slipcover that I’ve been planning on turning into pillows.

    April 30th, 2009 at 10:42 pm
    Comment by The Modern Gal
  9. Wow – great job and a great idea! I’ve always wanted to learn to sew and this seems like a great project to start with.

    May 1st, 2009 at 9:20 am
    Comment by Charm City Kim
  10. I like this idea. I recently refurbished a bunch of old pants into shorts, but you only need so many pairs of shorts.

    May 2nd, 2009 at 2:34 pm
    Comment by mickey
  11. am i allowed to say that i’m totally proud of these pillows!!! woohoo! you don’t need a sewing class, but i’m having one this summer anyway if you want to join us :-)

    May 5th, 2009 at 7:19 pm
    Comment by Rachel
  12. [...] Two words: Pants Pillows! [...]

    November 6th, 2009 at 10:52 am
    Pingback by Greener Holiday Gifts Guide – Homemade Crafts

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