Himalayan Silk Pillow

Jan 4, 2006
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Comments: 1

Author

by Julie Holetz

Introduction

Himalayan Silk PillowI first saw recycled silk yarn in my local yarn shop. I was drawn to it because it was so different from all the other yarns. The beautiful colors, interesting texture, and randomness of it all was so inviting to be explored. The yarn is handspun in Nepal using fiber remnants from garments like the beautiful, colorful, luxurious saris worn by women throughout South Asia . The colors in each skein are hand twisted into a thick and thin yarn at random, so no two skeins are alike. When I first saw the yarn, all I could think of were pillows. This particular pillow design is done in the round, forming a long rectangular shape. The front is in recycled silk and the back in blended wool silk. This design is also very flexible in size and can be made to fit just about any pillow form, see notes below. If you don’t have a pillow form or can’t find one in a size you need, just whip one up using a fabric remnant and some polyfill.

Materials List

  • Himalaya Recycled Silk (100% Recycled Silk, 100g/80yds, aran weight), Varying Shades, 3 hanks *Yarn available at kpixie*
  • Himalaya Wool Silk (60% Wool, 40% Recycled Silk, 100g/175 yds, worsted weight), 10-Black, 2 hanks *Yarn available at kpixie*
  • Size I (5.5mm) hook
  • 5 Stitch markers (I used contrasting pieces of yarn)
  • Yarn needle
  • 8-10” piece of cardboard
  • Pillow or fabric remnant & polyfill for insert

{Great thanks to kpixie for supplying the yarn for this pattern.}

Finished Size

14”l x 19”w

Gauge

Using 5.5mm hook and sc:
Recycled Silk – 10 sc x 11 rows = 4”
Wool Silk – 13 sc x 16 rows = 4”

Notes

US pattern notations used throughout
Ch = chain
St = stitch
Sc = single crochet
Sl st = slip stitch
Blo = back loop only

This pattern is crocheted in the round, joining at the end of each round. Due to the thick and thin nature of the recycled silk yarn, you will need to use stitch markers at each corner and at the beginning of the round. The front of the pillow will be worked through the back loop only and the back of the pillow will be worked through both loops. The recycled silk yarn will occasionally twist and curl into itself. To maximize the yardage, you will need to unwind it as you go by gently pulling and untwisting. The wool silk may pull apart if tugged too hard. You can just knot the two ends together and leave the knot on the backside as you continue the pattern. Any knots will not be seen. The recycled silk will be a little more stretchy than the wool silk, so both sides of the pillow should be close to the same size before stitching together, but it doesn’t have to be a perfect match.

Changing size
To adjust the pillow size, simply figure the difference between the length and width of the finished size and that will be the number of inches your foundation chain should be. For example, for a finished size of 16”x10”, the foundation chain would be 6”.

Alternate design options
The pattern can be made without tassels. If you choose to omit the tassels, you will have enough recycled silk to make an additional round on the pillow.

There is enough of the wool silk yarn left over to make additional rounds around the edge. This option would give a contrasting border that will make a bolder presentation of shape and color.

Tip
Weave in any tail ends as you go by crocheting over them. Begin new yarn 6-8” before you want to add the yarn, crochet over it with the working yarn. Add new yarn and crochet over old yarn for about 6-8” and cut any excess.

The Pattern

Tassels

Holding both the wool silk and recycled silk together, wrap the yarn around the cardboard 10 times. Thread a 10” length of yarn between the cardboard and yarn, gather and tie the yarn together at the top. Snip the bottom. Wrap a 12” length of yarn several times, about 1” from the top, and knot to create a tassel. Repeat this 3 more times.

Pillow

Front

With recycled silk, chain 16.

Round 1: Working into the top loop of the chain, place stitch marker and sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sc in next 13 ch. Work 3 sc in the last ch (place a stitch marker on the 1st and 3rd sts of this 3-sc group). Working around into the bottom loop of the chain, sc in the next 14 ch. Work 3 sc in the last ch (place a stitch marker on the 1st and 3rd sts of this 3-sc group). Sl st to first sc to join. – 34 sc

All rounds on this side of the pillow will be worked in blo.

Round 2: Ch 1, move stitch marker up. Sc in first st (this is the same stitch as the joining st), sc in the next 13 sts. When you reach the 3-sc group, work 3 sc in the 1st st of the group, moving stitch marker up with the 2nd sc, work 1 sc in the 2nd st, and 3 sc in the 3rd st, moving stitch marker up with the 2nd sc. Sc in next 14 sts. Work the same increase in the 3-sc group at the end of the round. Sl st to first sc to join.

Round 3: Ch 1, move marker up. Sc in first st, sc in next 14 sts. Work 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with the 2nd sc), sc in next 3 sts, 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with the 2nd sc), sc in next 16 sts, 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with the 2nd sc), sc in next 3 sts, 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with 2nd sc), sc in last st. Sl st to first sc to join.

Round 4: Ch 1, move marker up. Sc in each st around, working 3 sc in each corner st with marker and move the marker up with the 2nd sc in each 3-sc group. Sl st to first sc to join.

Repeat Round 4 until pillow is 18”x13”. Each side of the rectangle should have the same number of sts as the opposite side. Fasten off and weave in any loose ends.

Back

backWith wool silk, chain 19.

Round 1: Working into the top loop of the chain, place stitch marker and sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sc in next 16 ch. Work 3 sc in the last ch (place a stitch marker on the 1st and 3rd sts of this 3-sc group). Working around, into the bottom loop, of the chain, sc in the next 17 ch. Work 3 sc in the last ch (place a stitch marker on the 1st and 3rd sts of this 3-sc group). Sl st to first sc to join. – 40 sc

All rounds on this side will be worked through both loops.

Round 2: Ch 1, move stitch marker up. Sc in first st, sc in the next 16 sts. When you reach the 3-sc group, work 3 sc in the 1st st of the group, moving stitch marker up with the 2nd sc, work 1 sc in the 2nd st, and 3 sc in the 3rd st, moving stitch marker up with the 2nd sc. Sc in next 17 sts. Work the same increase in the 3-sc group at the end of the round. Sl st to first sc to join.

Round 3: Ch 1, move marker up. Sc in first st, sc in next 17 sts. Work 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with the 2nd sc), sc in next 3 sts, 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with the 2nd sc), sc in next 19 sts, 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with the 2nd sc), sc in next 3 sts, 3 sc in next st (moving marker up with 2nd sc), sc in last st. Sl st to first sc to join.

Round 4: Ch 1, move marker up. Sc in each st around, working 3 sc in each corner st with marker and move the marker up with the 2nd sc in each 3-sc group. Sl st to first sc to join.

Repeat Round 4 until pillow is 18”x13” or about even with the front side. Fasten off and weave in any loose ends.

Finishing

With wrong sides together, roughly pin the two pieces together. (I just used a small hook and threaded it through along the edge). Starting in one corner, sc the two pieces together around three sides of the pillow, working 3 sc into each corner. The two yarns have different gauges so don’t worry that you will not have the same number of sts on both sides of the pillow. Just skip one stitch on the wool silk side every 5 stitches or so and the bulk of the recycled silk will hide the skipped stitches. Insert the pillow form. Attach the tassels to each corner and knot the ties together on the inside. Work sc along the open side of the pillow to close.

sc the pieces together

To make your own pillow form

Fold fabric in half, place finished crocheted pillow casing on top, leaving a ¼”- ½” seam allowance on the side with the fabric fold. Trace around the remaining three sides of the pillowcase, leaving ¼”- ½” seam. Cut along trace line. Keeping the fabric folded, sew around two of the open sides and ½ of the third side. Stuff with polyfill and sew the rest of the pillow insert closed.


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Comments

Mackenzie4 wrote
on Sep 25, 2007 4:05 PM

That is BEAUTIFUL! I will be getting my own room soon (I share one with three sibs) I might make me one or two... Does anyone know if this yarn is exspensive?