Granny Star Pillow Tutorial - Part 2

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Bear Creek Quilting Company

2023 Maywood Studio Maker
I am a 2023 Maywood Studio Maker!
Posted by Shari on March 8th, 2015

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Hello, Friends!  I'm Amy from Amy Made That blog, back to share another tutorial for making a Granny Star pillow featuring Color Theory fabrics from V and Co. for Moda.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
In Part 1 of the Granny Star series, I made a GIANT 24" square version of the Granny Star stitched into a floor pillow.

{I called that one the "Great Granny Star" pillow.  If you missed the Part 1 tutorial, you can find it here.}

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
For today's project, I selected a yellow and gray palette. 

Color Theory by V and Co. for Moda
The Color Theory fat quarter bundle allows blending and pairing of so many shades!  The varied scales and patterns made it fun to put together fabrics for my Granny Star block.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Here's how to make a 15" x 15" finished Granny Star Pillow...

Basic Block Layout:

{I used my "background" gray solid fabric for the outer ring F pieces and also for the C pieces, which are the background for the star point B pieces.}

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial

{Follow this diagram, showing the labeled pieces above.}

A:  (1)   3" x 3"
B:  (8)   1 3/4" x 1 3/4", pressed in half diagonally*
C:  (4)   3" x 3"
D:  (4)   3" x 3"
E:  (4)    3" x 3"
F:  (12)  3" x 3"

*The star points  are folded, right sides out, diagonally.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Lay out the block pieces, to keep track of how they will be positioned. 

Now is the time to play with the color placement of the D and E pieces, to come up with a pleasing arrangement.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
The first step is to create the star in the center.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Pick up a folded B square, and line up the edges of a C square as shown.  Stitch along the fold.  I like to chain stitch all 4 C's, then snip them apart.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Using scissors, trim away the inside corners, to end with a 5" square with one star point, after pressing.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Repeat the process for all of the B units, stitching along the fold of the second star point.  Trim with scissors, and again the finished pressed star point blocks will measure 5".

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Begin to sew the squares together in rows. 

Press all seams in the same direction within each row, and alternate the pressing direction for every row.  This will allow you to nest the seams for perfect piecing.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
The finished block is beautiful, but kind of shaggy on the edges, right?

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Trim up the block to make a perfect square measuring 11" x 11".  Make sure the 5 1/2" ruler lines cross the center of the block.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
There will be 1/4" of background fabric beyond each of the points, so they should not be chopped off when the borders are added.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Now add 3" borders to your pillow.  Cut (2)  3" x 17" border strips from each of 2 different prints.  Once the borders have been applied, trim your finished pillow top to 16" x 16".

At this point, I lined the back of the block with a 16" x 16" piece of Pellon ShapeFlex SF101 fusible interfacing.  It gives great shaping to the pillow and also keeps the seams from pulling apart. 

I chose to make mitered borders for mine.  There are tutorials on the internet, and I used this one from Seams Likely blog.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
For the pillow back, I selected another coordinating print from my fat quarter bundle.  I cut this pretty triangle print to measure 16" x 16" and lined it with another piece of ShapeFlex SF101 fusible interfacing.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
I had a 14" soft gray zipper, that blended nicely with my finished pillow top and back.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
I used the same process as described in Part 1, the Great Granny Star Pillow, applying the zipper to the bottom of the pillow. 

{I remembered to OPEN THAT ZIPPER  before I stitched the other 3 edges together, using a 1/2" seam.} 

I turned the cover right side out, then pressed it neatly and admired it.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
I used a 16" square pillow form, and spent a couple of minutes stuffing and fluffing.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
That sweet old Granny Star cover fluffed up to become a pleasingly plump pillow.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
Here's a glimpse of the zipper on the bottom of the cushion.

Granny Star Pillow Tutorial
It was fun spending an afternoon with my Granny Star Pillow project.

I hope you'll join me again soon for the grand-baby-sized project, Part 3 of our Granny Star series!

"Granny Star Pillow" Tutorial was designed and created for Bear Creek Quilting Company by Amy from Amy Made That by eamylove.
Fabric used in this tutorial is from Color Theory  by V and Co. for Moda.
Do you love free fabric?  Do you love to teach?  Want to be a contributor on our blog?  Send us an email at to get started!

Category: Tutorials


  • 1. Posted by Lara B. on March 17th, 2015 at 12:28 p.m.
    LOL - I sewed a pillow shut without remembering to open that zipper once. It was pretty tricky getting it unzipped so I could turn the pillow right side out. Fantastic tutorial Amy - you are a great teacher!
  • 2. Posted by Karen Miller on March 11th, 2015 at 6:32 p.m.
    Your pillows are just beautiful Amy - Thank you so much for the great tutorials and the inspiration!
  • 3. Posted by Susie on March 8th, 2015 at 1:41 p.m.
    I love this pillow! This is such a cute pattern, with that star in the middle of the Granny block! The colors in the fabrics really make it pop! And the zipper in the side seam is awesome in pillows. Thanks for the tutorial!
  • 4. Posted by Michele Timms on March 8th, 2015 at 1:25 p.m.
    Beautiful pillows!!! That fabric collection is gorgeous!!! Thanks for the tutorial!