Travel Pillow and Case
Also known as a Commuter Pillow, a Train, Bus or Plane Pillow, or a Neck Roll. It's used to prevent getting a sore head or face, or a cramped neck if you tend to doze off while travelling by one of these methods.
I came up with this pattern for my daughter for Christmas 2000. She wanted a travel pillow, but not an inflatable one, nor a large one, nor one that was shaped like three quarters of a large doughnut. :) She described the size she wanted as forearm size. I figured a few inches larger in each direction would be about right. And of course, the stores had no such thing, so off I went in search of materials, then out came the sewing machine.
Materials and finished size are what I used and are suggestions only. You're always free to change them. The materials I chose happened to work out perfectly for me when it came to size - a pleasant surprise for a change!
NOTE: Instructions are given for a small rectangular pillow, a bit less than 10 by 15 inches before stuffing.
- 1 cotton terry hand towel, about 20 by 30 inches
- 1 double or queen size quilt batt (or fibrefill) for stuffing - you definitely won't use the whole thing
- a standard size pillowcase
One towel of the size above makes 2 travel pillows.
- Find centre of towel and cut into 2 pieces, each about 15 by 20 inches. Each piece will become one pillow.
- Decide which is right side of material. Fold inside out, and sew seam along one short end and the long side, leaving other end open for stuffing. Turn right side out.
- Cut a piece of quilt batting about 10 to 12 inches wide, and a few feet long. Roll and flatten slightly, or fold, until it's a suitable size to stuff the pillow. I used a piece as long as the width of my quilt batt.
- Stuff pillow and adjust stuffing to lay smooth as best you can. Using small stitches, slip stitch the opening closed (or sew it closed by machine if you're not that fussy about it).
One standard size pillowcase makes 2 (to 4) travel pillowcases.
- Find centre of pillowcase, then cut in half, so you'll have 2 pieces each approx 15 by 20 inches. You'll use the hemmed (open at both ends) piece for the 2 new pillowcases - the hemmed opening acting as the new hemmed opening.
- Next, find centre of this piece crosswise, and cut in half from hemmed edge to your previous cut. As with the pillow itself, sew the short seam opposite the hemmed edge, and along the long side, leaving hemmed edge open. Tada - pillowcase done!
- You can do something similar with the rest of the original pillowcase, but you'll need to hem the opening, either by hand or machine. I didn't bother since time was of the essence and I already had as many pillowcases as I wanted.
- If using something other than terry cloth for the pillow, it should be comfortable against bare skin, such as a soft cotton flannel or an extra soft polyester fleece.
- You can adjust the size and shape to fit the recipient's needs or the size of your materials.
- If you make the pillowcase from a darker colour or pattern, it won't look grubby as fast or need to be washed as frequently as a lighter colour would.
More travel related projects:
Sew and Go - Easy Convertible Projects for the Active Lifestyle
Sew and Go - Easy Convertible Projects for the Active Lifestyle. 110 pages, lots of colour illustrations, 25 projects for making all sorts of useful travel accessories - from holdalls and insulated water bottle carriers to travel journals - this book delivers instructions to sewers and non-sewers alike. Ideas include such ingenious items as a hip pack which converts to a rain poncho, a child's cap that doubles as a bag, a backpack that zips into a shoulder bag, and a beach bag that unfolds as a blanket.;There are also packing tips, tips to make travel easier, and various money and labour-saving ideas.
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