Friday, August 27, 2010

Knock Off Vintage Feed Bags-Tutorial

Okay. Is it just me or are vintage feed bags the hot item right now? I had no idea until I started seeing them all over various blogs and in my newest Pottery Barn Magazine. I may be a little late in the game, but better late than never I suppose.

And as with most fads, I find myself wanting in on the action. However, I was completely caught off guard by how expensive the little buggers were. When I saw that Pottery Barn was selling vintage feed back pillow covers for $89-$99...for one, I about had a coronary. As much as like them, there is absolutely no way I can justify spending that much...especially with the constant threat of cheeto fingers and chocolate milk face (did I mention I have five kiddies?)
So that gots me to thinking. How could I get the look of vintage feedbags without having sell one of the kids on the black market to fund my investment? Answer: make my own knock offs. So that's what I did.

Here are the items you will need:

(You could also use muslin or canvas if you're not into painters tarp...but it's hecka cheap, $6 for twenty-five square feet).
Oh, and some painters tape (not pictured).

To begin, decide on the size you want your pillows to be and cut your drop cloth accordingly (add and inch to your measurements to allow for seams.)
The pillow inserts I used measured 21x14 inches, so I cut my fabric 22x15

I don't know if you noticed, but the pillow covers in the Pottery Barn Mag are similar in design to a pillow case...meaning they have only three sewn sides. The fourth side is left unstitched and will provide the opening for your insert. I would recommend that when cutting your fabric you use the selvage edges on the fourth side. It will save you the hassle of having to hem the ends.

Once you've cut your pieces, it's time to tape off a pattern. I only painted the pattern on one side of the case, but if you're ambitious you could do both. I borrowed a design right off the Pottery Barn sample.

I started with one, thin, vertical stripe.
Just tape off the desired width using painters tape.

Using your stippling brush, stipple on your color inside the two pieces of tape (make sure that you are moving your hand in an up and down you are tapping the fabric). I used acrylic craft paint in pewter grey.

Then add two, wider, vertical stripes on either side of it using the same method with the painters tape (again I used acrylic craft paint in Sky Blue), and a few numbers at the bottom. I use a stencil I purchased for $2 at Joann's. Follow the same stippling technique used for doing the stripes.

You can also add a few numbers or letters for a little something extra.

Now you are ready to sew your pieces together. (I recommend pinning the pieces together to minimize any sliding or moving of the fabric. Be aware that you want the right (or front sides of the fabric facing each other when pinning. The wrong sides of the fabric should be facing out.

Sew up the three raw, or unfinished edges, leaving the already finished fourth edge open. Then turn your case right side out.

Then put the insert inside your finished case.

Here are a few other variations I did. You can keep it simple...

or make it a little more complicated. I found this cool chicken pattern on the "net" and downloaded it. I made a stensil out of heavy cardstock (you could also use contact paper, or a plastic folder...whatever you have lying around the house). I just copied the image onto my cardstock then cut out the image of the chicken. I stippled a little gray paint over it and I turned out great. I added the wording using the letter stensil I purchased.

Boo-ya. Knock off vintage feed back pillow cases for $2.50. Now that's more like it.

Linking to:
Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special


  1. Those are great! And I have a new drop cloth sitting around here somewhere!

    Thanks for linking up to Show and Tell Saturday!

  2. These are freakin saweet! I love them so much!

  3. I love this! I am totally going to try this one. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Erika!!! Those are seriously awesome, girl! What perfect faux French grain sacks!!!! Thanks for the tutorial for us craft-challenged-grain-sack-addicted gals out here. I'm definitely going to save this one! :)

    xoxo laurie

  5. Cute the colors too! Great job!

  6. Not only did you offer up a fabulously easy tutorial to follow, your designs are gorgeous! You've totally encouraged me to try this!

    I've featured you on SNS #65's sidebar this weekend. :)


  7. So cute! I have this post linked to in my blog, hope you don't mind!

  8. These & the numbered pillows are awesome! I'm a little late getting to this post (just found you) but I am definitely going to try this! I wonder if I could do it as a no-sew project with iron on tape? hmmmm

  9. I too have been wanting these...I'm not much of a "sew-er" but I think I could handle these...can't wait to try! Thanks for sharing, Laurel@chippingwithcharm

  10. Boo-ra is right!! Good job! I'm making some myself out of a tablecloth that's a soft sack cloth material...sweet! In my area, coffee shops and breweries have feed sacks at $2 each, I haven't seen'em yet,, but I'm on my
    thanks for sharing this, Mel's Cabin


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