Moomah the Magazine
Make it! Pet Pillows

Make it! Pet Pillows

Of all our obsessions at Moomah, one of the greatest is our love for animals; the ones already in our homes, and the ones we debate adding to our homes as we stalk Petfinder in our weaker moments. We are just as guilty as the rest for spending hours watching cute animal videos, or going through our phones to show any willing acquaintance how cute our cat was while taking a nap (she's peeking out under the covers… come on!!). We're the ones you may not want to kiss on the cheek... unless you like the taste of doggy slobber. So it may come as no surprise that we love the pet pillows we've been seeing everywhere. They're on Pinterest, Etsy, you name it! The only problem is, they just aren't of our OWN pets!

We decided to figure out an easy way to make our own pet pillows. The animal stars of this project are both a mixture of our own pets, as well as some of the babies that are available for adoption right now at our beloved Animal Haven in NYC.

Check out how we did it... and look at the adorable results!



•A digital photograph of your pet
•Ink Jet Printer
•Sewing Machine
•White or Neutral colored fabric (cotton) for the front of the pillow 
   - we used old pillow cases and sheets - anything smooth and cotton will work
•Patterned fabric for the back of the pillow
   - we used some different colored shirts for our material
Avery Light Fabric Transfer Papers

preparing your image:

TAKE a photograph of your favorite pet. Be sure to choose a photo with your pet's silhoette isolated, so that nothing is overlapping. It may be easiest to only use their head.

DESIGN your image using one of the pre-designed templates provided by Avery (the transfer paper company) or found online.

FLIP the image of your pet using a software, or by selecting the mirror image option on your printer. Test the print on plain paper before adding the fabric paper.

FEED one sheet of fabric paper into the printer and PRINT!

CUT out the image with a narrow margin around the sides. Keep the edges rounded to avoid lifting during ironing.



FIND a surface that is waist-high or lower, and place the pillow case down.

EMPTY the iron of all water (you do not want any steam) and iron the pillow case to remove any wrinkles.

PLACE the transfer paper with the image facing down in the desried direction onto the pillow case.

APPLY body pressure first, then iron the image on. Start by slowly ironing from left to right, the iron slowly from top to bottom.

REMOVE your pillow case from the heating area and allow to cool for 2 minutes.

PEEL the paper backing from the corner of the transfer. Peel smoothly so that the paper does not tear.

IF THE IMAGE BEGINS TO LIFT, cover with parchment paper and re-iron, focusing on the edges and corners.


forming the pillow

CHOOSE the colored fabric that you will be using for the back of the pillow.

PIN the colored fabric to the white fabric (with the image), so that they are inside out. This is how you will sew them together. 

DRAW a line around the image for cutting, and another for sewing. Make sure there is a 2 inch border around the image.

CUT around the line so that both fabrics become the shape of your pet.


Sewing & stuffing Your Pillow

USE the sewing machine to sew the two fabrics together. Make sure that the two fabrics are both still inside out!

LEAVE a gap in the sewing, so that there is space to fill the pillow with polyfill.

SNIP fabric in areas where there are sharp edges, to ensure that your curves and corners will be smooth once you turn the fabric right-side-out. This is especially helpful around delicate areas like ears and noses. Clip little triangle shapes out to reduce the amount of fabric buildup.

TURN the fabrics around so that they are no longer inside out.

FILL the pillow with polyfill. It is best to use some sort of tool to push the pollyfill into every section of the pillow. We used a small wooden spoon. Stuff the pillow until  you feel like it is completely full... and then stuff it some more!



FASTEN the remaining gap in your pillow stitching with pins.

STITCH the space by hand until all edges are attached. We used a simple slip stitch.



If you want to make bigger pillows, don't let the size of the paper stop you! The transfer paper is only 8.5" x 11" inches, but that doesn't mean you can't make bigger pillows. Use two or more pieces of paper to fill your design. You can do this in your printer icon box. Print to desired size, and then piece together cut outs as we did below.





* We made our pet pillows using images of our own pets, as well as dogs from an animal shelter. This could be another great activity for kids and charity - auction off your pet pillows to raise money for the shelter.

** Or... Father's Day is coming up! Put dad's old shirt to use.

We're not above putting our moms to work when they come for a visit. SPECIAL THANKS to Lin Ashlock (mom of Lisel) for her diligent ironing, cutting and sewing of these Pet Pillows!

Posted in: Animal Kingdom   Crafts: Make It!   

Share |

<< previous article

next article >>

Recent Comments

Linda Towson said…

This grandmother enjoys your mag. Walnut Creek friend of Lin Ashlock,
Mother of grown kids, Eric and Jeff.

  - Thank you, Linda!

Join the conversation!

Subscribe Now

Get each new issue of

Moomah the Magazine

delivered to you every fortnight

For Free!

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • RSS
skip to site