Upcycled Denim Pillow Shams

I have always loved upcycling clothing!  The summer after I graduated high school I did a ton of t-shirt reconstructions and they helped me gain a ton of confidence in my sewing skills.  Thirteen years later and I still love upcycles!  My most recent upcycling projects have to do with keepsake or memory sewing.  Memory sewing is using clothing or other items (baby clothing that has been outgrown or clothing from loved ones who have passed away, etc) to create precious keepsakes.

Some of the memory upcycles I’ve enjoyed the most are denim rag quilts

and memory bears!  Aren’t they precious?!?

Check out my facebook page Whitney Sews Memories if you want to see more of my memory sewing projects!

But today I’ll be showing how to reuse denim jeans to make pillow shams!  They are pretty easy and can be customized however you like.

Check out the full step-by-step video tutorial HERE!

What other projects can you think of to make from denim?!?  There will be another new sewing tutorial up next Wednesday on Whitney Sews!  Until then, Happy Sewing!



Sewing Half Square Triangles and Pinwheels

If you have done much quilting you know the value of half square triangles!  You can use them to create countless quilt designs just by rotating the blocks and using specific fabrics.  That is why I knew I needed to dedicate a Quilting Quicky video to them.

Check out my Half Square Triangle Quilting Quicky HERE!

I finished my half square triangles off as a pinwheel, but let your imagination run wild!  You can create a variety of quilt blocks, or even a quilt that is one large one-of-a-kind design.

If you like the pinwheel look check out how I quilt mine shown HERE!

What other quilting techniques would you like to see in a future Quilting Quicky tutorial??

Make sure to come back next Wednesday for another new tutorial.  Until then, Happy Sewing!




How to Create Low Cost Plastic Sewing Pattern Templates

I have a few patterns I use over and over again.  Like my newsboy hat pattern and my fabric bunting pattern.  After using them a few times I quickly realized paper patterns weren’t going to last very long.  I started looking for a way to make my own longer lasting patterns…and I came up with a solution!

Dollar Tree carries flexible cutting mats (2/$1) that are perfect for copying sewing patterns onto.  I transfer all the pattern markings and info onto the cutting mats then cut each one out.  I also use a small hole punch to punch out any dots on the pattern that need to be marked.

See exactly how I make my plastic patterns HERE!

The plastic templates can then be used the same way as the paper patterns…only easier!

The newest pattern I transferred over to plastic is the memory bear pattern I’ve been using.  I love making these memory bears and know I’ll be making a lot of them, so I need pattern pieces that will stand up to all the use.

I will have a video coming soon with all my tips and tricks for making beautiful keepsake bears.  Make sure you are subscribed to Whitney Sews on youTube so you don’t miss that tutorial.

Until next time, Happy Sewing!


Rustic Fabric Ornaments | EASY DIY

This week I was working on a few keepsake ornaments for a friend and wanted to share this super simple DIY.  These ornaments in particular were made using the leftover denim and t-shirts from making a rag quilt.  But you can use any upcycled clothing or fabric you like.  They only take a few minutes to make, but save those precious memories for many many years.

Watch the full tutorial HERE!

Want some other ideas for repurposing denim??  Check out my playlist of ideas HERE!

Until next time, Merry Christmas and Happy Sewing!



DIY Neck Warmer – 30 Minute Project

Who doesn’t want to stay warm and be fashionable at the same time?!?  This week you can learn how to make a cute and cozy neck warmer that takes less than 30 minutes to make!  It’s very beginner friendly and great for last minute gifts for the men or women in your life.

I used a purple quilting cotton for the outside of mine and a ripple cuddle fabric for the lining.  It is so cozy!  I used a fun Star Wars print and flannel for my husband’s neck wrap.  He wanted his to just stop the wind, and not be as plush as mine.

Learn how to make your own using the step-by-step video tutorial HERE!

I used plastic snaps on my neck warmer because they are so easy to use, but you can definitely use some fun buttons and buttonholes as the closure on yours.  If you want to learn how to set snaps in a project like this, click HERE!

I’ll have another new tutorial next Wednesday, until then, Happy Sewing!



Paper Pieced Christmas Stocking | Holiday How to

Who is ready for a new holiday how to?!?  This week I’ll be showing how to sew a paper pieced Christmas stocking.  You can turn it into a mug rug or make several for a table runner or quilt.

I absolutely love paper piecing because it allows me to create designs that would be very complicated or even impossible to create with traditional piecing.  For this particular paper piecing pattern I made two mirror image versions so the stocking can point to the left or to the right.  Get your PDF stocking pattern HERE!

Learn how to sew your pattern together using my step-by-step video tutorial.   Click HERE to watch!

What other holiday how tos would you like to see on Whitney Sews??  I’ll be back next week with another tutorial to help you stay warm in the cold winter weather.  Until then, Happy Sewing!



Handmade Holiday Gift Guide 2017

It’s that time of year again!  Time for my 6th annual Handmade Holiday Gift Guide!  Every year I share a video full of handmade items that would make great gifts for the upcoming holiday season.  For every idea shared there is a step-by-step tutorial already available on my channel for you to follow along with.  This year’s guide includes gift options for the kids, ladies, and men in your life.  Many of them are easy to make and great for sewing from your stash.

Click HERE to watch the 2017 Handmade Holiday Gift Guide!

Make sure to come back Wednesday for a new holiday how to and until then, Happy Sewing!


Newsboy Hat How to with FREE Pattern


I am so excited for this week’s tutorial!  I have been making newsboy hats for 9 years and shared a hat tutorial HERE on Whitney Sews almost 7 years ago.  That tutorial was filmed on my old camera and the pattern was hard to print and use, so it is definitely time for an updated version!

These hats are so much fun to make and wear!  I love to recycle old pants to use for the materials and incorporate some of the seams and details into the finished hat.  This keeps the hats eco friendly, budget friendly, and one of a kind!  I get compliments on my hats all the time and people are always impressed when I say I made it.  You can start impressing others too when you make your own hat using my FREE pattern and step-by-step tutorial!  Click HERE to get your PDF pattern!

Learn how to make your newsboy hat using my video tutorial HERE!


Love this tutorial and FREE pattern and want to help support future Whitney Sews tutorials??  You can do so by donating HERE.

I’ll be back in a few days with my Handmade Holiday Gift Guide for 2017!  It is full of tutorials that would make great presents for the upcoming holiday season.  Until then, Happy Sewing!


Straight Line Quilting a Pinwheel – Quilting Quicky

I have had a few different projects pop up recently that incorporated pinwheels and I knew exactly how I wanted them quilted!  I wanted a line of stitching just inside every side of each section.  So I needed to figure out how I could get the look I wanted in the easiest way possible.  After a couple of tries I realized it could be done in one continuous stitching line if I followed the correct pattern.

I originally sketched out the stitching order in pencil and even though I understood it I knew it would be super confusing to anyone else.  So I redrew it in color order!  *I love color order so much!*  Below is the stitching graphic for how I quilt my pinwheels.  Simply start at the black dot and follow the arrows in color order around the image to quilt your pinwheel.

Make sure to pin and save the graphic to have it next to you while you are at your sewing machine quilting.

Click HERE to watch the video where I show step-by-step quilting one of my pinwheels.

After you quilt a few pinwheels and get the hang of it you can really start at any point on the block and just keep following the same pattern until you get back to where you started.

For the Star Wars quilt pictured above I started quilting on the tan/blue pinwheel in its upper left corner.  I quilted the pinwheel then when I got back to where I started I stitched straight up into the feature block above and did some straight line stitching then went right into the yellow/white pinwheel, quilted that one and moved to the feature block below.  I was able to continue that pattern to quilt two full rows of the quilt in one continuous stitching line!  Then I repeated the pattern with the next two rows, etc.  You can see more of my Star Wars quilt HERE!

On the Oklahoma Harvest mini quilt I quilted each pinwheel separately then quilted straight lines on each of the sashing/cornerstone pieces.  Click HERE to learn how to make the Oklahoma Harvest quilt!

I hope this helps gave you the confidence to try sewing/quilting some pinwheels!  Let me know what other quilt blocks or techniques you want to see covered in a future Quilting Quicky video.  Until next time, Happy Sewing!


Oklahoma Harvest Quilt Tutorial

This week I am so excited to share a new quilt tutorial.  Well, new for you…not for me.  This is one of the first quilts I ever designed, 12 years ago, the summer after I graduated high school!  I am FINALLY turning some of those old design sketches into actual finished quilts!

I actually partnered up with a company called Arteza to create this tutorial.  Because of that partnership the companion PDF is FREE!  The PDF includes cutting measurements, a colored graphic to help with the piecing, as well as a blank graphic you can print and color to try out other fabric colors.  Click HERE to download your PDF!  Once you go through the ‘checkout’ process there will be a button to click to download the PDF on that page.

This quilt is made up of four 13 inch blocks for a nice wall hanging size, but feel free to make twelve blocks for the perfect baby quilt size!

Learn how to make the quilt using Whitney’s step-by-step video tutorial.  You can find the tutorial HERE!

Make sure to stick around to the end of the video to find out how to enter the giveaway to win some Arteza supplies of your own!

Let me know if you want to see more tutorials showcasing some of my original quilt designs!  Until next time, Happy Sewing!