Sunday, April 28, 2013

iPad Pillow

how to make an iPad pillow
I love my iPad. And I love watching TV shows on my iPad in bed. I don't love holding it up with my hands. Yes, I have an iPad case that folds in different shapes and angles. But. It. Always. Falls. Down. grrrrrrr...

Then I saw a beautiful tablet stand from Taryn at from Pixels to Patchwork. I love what she did. She made a tablet stand that is attractive AND functional. She included a great tutorial to boot!

I immediately made one, making some modifications to her design to suit my needs as well as my fear of zippers (There, i SAID it!). This sweet little pillow has become a HUGE hit already. And I made it from stuff I already had laying around my stash pile! Score :)

Because I strayed some from Taryn's original plan, I am also including a tutorial. Here goes:

I used two contrasting patters of upholstery fabric, which eliminated the need for interfacing for me. People always ask where I get my upholstery fabric, I got this fabric at U-Fab and I am in LOVE with the colors and patterns.

how to make a tablet pillow

For Fabric A, I cut one large rectangle measuring 10"x28".  For Fabric B I cut two equilateral rectangles with 9" sides, one 9"x10" rectangle, and two 9"x3" rectangles (not pictured). I used poly-fill from old throw pillows for all the stuffing.

First I took the 9"x10" rectangle and folded it to create a T-Shape on both sides. I sewed each of the edges together with 3 seams to preserve the T-shape, being careful not to sew the top flap down flat.

I stuffed this piece very full with stuffing. I really wanted this piece to have some height and not lay flat when attached to the pillow, so I stuffed it unevenly and tried to push all the stuffing towards the top. I also used a zipper-foot so that I could sew as close to the stuffing as possible. The result was that the extra seam allowance doesn't lay flat and looked like this.

The next thing you will want to do is create your tabs. You will want to fold your two remaining small rectangles lengthwise and sew with the right sides facing (I used a 3/8" seam allowance). You will have two tubes that are inside-out. Use a hook or safety pin to pull them right-side out and iron flat.

Note: when I sewed the body of my pillow (for the first time), I didn't know that I would decide to add the tabs at the top corners. So, I actually opened the seams at the top edges of the pillow just a bit so that I could sew the tabs in. This worked fine. But you could save yourself a step by pinning them in place BEFORE sewing in the triangles. 

EDITED TO ADD** I made another iPad pillow. This time around I DID add the top tabs before sewing the sides together.  I recommend doing it this way.

I sewed the tops of the tabs together, forming a square where the two tabs meet.  The bottom of my tabs are about 3" from the top of the triangle in this photo. 

Anyway, back to the original assembly. With right sides facing, I pinned one side of the triangle to the edge of the large rectangle with a 3/8" seam allowance. I stopped sewing when I was 3/8" from the corner of the triangle.
NOTE** The picture above was taken on my FIRST iPad pillow, which was constructed BEFORE the tabs were inserted.

Then I lifted the presser foot and pivoted the rectangle. I used the same technique for the third triangle edge. 

Now I had something like this.

I did the same thing with the other triangle along the other edge of the rectangle. Now it looked like this.

Next you will want to secure the top tabs.  After the sides are sewn together, pin the edge of the tabs to the rectangle.  Carefully stitch them down.

The picture below gives you a good idea of what the tabs will look like on the finished pillow.

ipad holder sewing

Carefully pin the bottom piece on (I'll call this the prop). This part requires thinking to make sure you pin the right way. All edge allowances should be facing towards the open edge. I also made sure the thicker part of the prop was facing the right side of the pillow. I sewed this in with a zipper foot, although I left about 1/2" space between the pillow and the prop to allow room for the iPad.

After turning it right-side out and making sure to get all the corners poked out, I stuffed the whole thing with poly-fill. I played around with the amount of stuffing and realized that I liked it better if it wasn't too full.

Finally, I sewed the pillow closed at the bottom. First I folded in all the seam allowances and pinned it closed. I used the zipper foot again so that I could sew as close to the stuffing as possible. And, I sewed as close to the edge of the pillow as possible so the seam would be less visible.

make a tablet case

I have been using it with my iPad in it's case. I like that I don't have to take it out of the case to use the pillow. And the case helps keep it from slipping against the fabric.

make ipad holder

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I love this! I saw one like this for sale on tv and, with two little ones, seriously considered purchasing. I wish my sewing skills were tangible and not just in my head. But hey, I can sew a button and hand stitch a seam does that count as "skills"? Lol

  2. Great idea! Thanks for sharing your fantastic tutorial too!

  3. I love your fabric and your ipad pillow turned out way cute.

  4. Great idea! My little man would love this! Thank you for sharing! I’d love to have you visit me at Get Your Crap Together! We have a Pattern Party from the 1st of the month to the 10th and would love you to check it out. See you soon!

  5. OMG what a great idea! Pinning! Thanks so much for linking up to Give Me The Goods Monday! Hope to see you again next week ;)
    Jamie @

  6. So awesome! I need to make one of these for my kindle! That fabric is gorgeous!
    Thanks for linking up!

  7. A great idea to comfortably use your iPad in bed!!!


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