10 Things to Do With a White Pillow

A plain white throw pillow is a snore. Try these DIY tricks from HGTV Magazine for easy transformations.

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  • Your Blank Canvas

    Machine-wash, dry and iron the pillow cover first. Do your DIY magic, and then stuff it with the insert. Pillow: 18\" x 18\" cotton twill cover, $25, and firm 18\" x 18\" insert, $18, both thecompanystore.com.

  • Stamp It

    With a makeup sponge, apply a thin coat of fabric paint to the head of a potato masher. Press it firmly onto the pillow cover, leaving about an inch between each stamp. Alternate single stamps with double ones. Stamp in one direction, then the other on top of it. Paint: Pebeo fabric paint in butter cup, $6, dickblick.com

  • Add Ribbon Trim

    Measure about 4 inches from each edge of the case and mark with a disappearing-ink fabric pen, like Dritz Marking Pen ($6.50, createforless.com). Cut a piece of ribbon 40 inches long. Use fabric glue to affix it along the marks you made, folding at each corner to make a square. Repeat with a 32-inch piece of ribbon, then a 24-inch piece, spacing the squares about 1/2 inch apart. Ribbon: Grosgrain, from $0.50 per yard, mjtrim.com

  • Stitch On Knots

    Draw circles freehand, starting with the smallest one, using a disappearing-ink fabric pen. Thread an embroidery needle with embroidery yarn. Then sew French knots. For a step-by-step how-to, go to hgtv.com/french-knots. Here's the basic idea: Pierce the fabric from inside the case and pull the thread through. Tightly wind the yarn around the needle three times. Insert half the needle through the fabric, next to the original hole, and pull the yarn taut to create a coil, and then pull the needle through. Yarn: Trio by Brown Paper Packages, $6, purlsoho.com

  • Dip-Dye It

    Wearing rubber gloves, make a dye bath, following the package's directions. Immerse two-thirds of the case in the bath for a few seconds, then dip the bottom third in the dye again for 30 seconds. Finally, dip the bottom edge in the dye until you get the darkest shade. Wring out excess water, then rinse the fabric under cool water until it runs clear. Lay flat on an old towel to dry. Dye: Liquid in violet, $4, ritdye.com

  • Glue On Felt Branches

    Cut out tree branches freehand from brown felt. Affix them to the case with fabric glue (try Magna-Tac). Glue a cluster of buttons to the end of each limb. Felt: Wool felt in fawn, $8 for an 18\" square, magiccabin.com; Buttons: Monochromatic pink buttons, $6.50 for a set of 63, orientaltrading.com

  • Monogram It

    Coat a stencil with repositionable mounting spray adhesive (try Elmer's) so you can stick it to the center of the pillow. Use a makeup sponge to fill in the stencil with a craft paint that's safe on fabrics. Let dry, then peel off the stencil. Stencil: 10\" monogram font, $10 per letter, stencilease.com; Paint: Martha Stewart Crafts paint in Pond, $2, Michaels stores

  • Iron on a Photo

    Find an image you like online or scan one in. (For vintage postcards, go to cardcow.com.) Use an editing program like Microsoft Word to flip the picture so you see its mirror image. Print it on transfer paper, then iron it on the pillow, following the package's directions. Transfer paper: Light Fabric Transfers for inkjet printers, $22 for 12, avery.com

  • Draw On a Butterfly Pattern

    Hold a cookie cutter in place with one hand, then trace dots around the outer edges with a fabric marker. Remove the cutter and use the marker to add details, like the butterflies' antennae. Cookie cutters: Butterflies, $1 each, surlatable.com; Marker: Marvy Fabric Brush marker in blue, $3, dickblick.com

  • Add Appliques

    Starting at one corner, iron on one applique at a time, following the package's directions. We used a paisley design made of rhinestones. Appliques: From $0.80 each, createforless.com

  • Cover It With Silhouettes

    Brush light-sensitive paint on the pillow cover, then immediately place your objects (we used skeleton keys) over the paint. Let the cover sit in the sun for as long as the package's directions suggest, then remove the objects to reveal the white fabric underneath. Paint: Inkodye, $12 for 4 ounces, lumi.com

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