Project Ruffled and Serged Story Time Pillow

By Milinda Stephenson

Skill Level: Beginner  

-+ FromTo Love List

Want to show off your serger skills and create a fun pillow your little one will love? Try this pillow! With a pocket to hold books, toys and treasures, this pillow will be cute and functional. Make it on your new Baby Lock Vibrant serger. Download printable instructions.


  • 6” x 66” cotton print for pillow ruffle #1 (outside ruffle Print A)
  • 3” x 66” cotton print for pillow ruffle #2 (inside ruffle Print B)
  • 3” x 18” cotton print for pocket ruffle (Print C)
  • 16” x 16” cotton print for pillow front (Print C)
  • (2) 8 ½” x 16” cotton print for pillow back (Print C)
  • 16” x 7” cotton print or solid for pocket lining (Print C or solid to match prints)
  • (4) 3 ½ ” by 7 ½” cotton print for pillow front (Print C)
  • 2 ½”by 45” cotton print for pillow front ruffles (Print D)
  • 1 3/8” bias strips – 76” in length – this will result in a number of strips (Print E)
  • 66” -1/8” cording
  • 22” zipper
  • 16” x 16” lightweight iron-on stabilizer


  • Baby Lock Vibrant Serger


  1. Use ¼” seams throughout project

  2. Creating the puffing strips for the Pillow Pocket:

    1. Attach the gathering foot. Set the serger for a 4-thread overlock, adjusting the stitch length to 4.0 and the differential feed to 2.

    2. Place the 2 ½” by 45” fabric strip under the presser foot and stitch, trimming only a sliver of fabric.

    3. Turn the fabric and serge down the opposite side of the fabric.

    4. Cut puffing strips into three 2 ½” by 7 ½” pieces.

  3. Creating the Piping:

    1. Join the fabrics strips using a 4-thread overlock, bias cut 1 3/8” wide, to create a length that measures 76”. Press the seams to one side.

    2. Attach the cording foot. Set the serger up for a 3-thread overlock stitch. Attach the cording foot.

    3. Wrap the bias fabric strip around the cording positioning the cording against the fold and aligning the fabric edges.

    4. Place the cording under the presser foot aligning the cording with the groove on the underside of the presser foot.

    5. Stitch the entire length of the bias strip.

  4. Creating the Ruffles:

    1. Prep the outside and inside ruffles by piece together the strips to create the 66” using a 4-thread overlock stitch. Press the seams to the side.

    2. Set the serger up for a rolled hem following the Vibrant Instruction and Reference Manual. Place overlock thread in the needle and upper and lower loopers.

    3. Set the serger for the 4-thread overlock stitch by adjusting the stich length to 4.0 and the differential feed to 2.0.

    4. Attach the gathering foot. Place the 6” x 66” fabric strip under the presser foot with the unfinished edge next to the cutting blade. Stitch.

    5. For the 3” x 66” and 3” x 18” fabric strip, repeat step 3. Set these two pieces aside.

  5. Inserting the Zipper in the Pillow Back:

    1. Attach the cording foot and set the serger for a 3-thread overlock wide stitch.

    2. Open the zipper. Place zipper face down, right sides together with one 8 1/2” by 16” pillow back pieces.

    3. Place outside of zipper about ¼” in from the fabric edge. Serge, attaching zipper to fabric.

    4. Repeat for second 8 ½” by 16” piece.

  6. Preparing the Pillow Front:

    1. Iron stabilizer onto the back of the 16” x 16” pillow front fabric.

  7. Pocket for Pillow Front:

    1. Serge 3 ½ ” by 7 ½” fabric strips to 2 ½” by 7 ½” puffing strips

  8. Pillow Pocket Front:

    1. With raw edge of ruffles to raw edge of pillow pocket front, right sides together, serge first the 3” by 16” ruffle across the top using a 3-thread overlock.

    2. Place pillow pocket lining right sides together on top of pillow pocket front aligning fabric edges and making sure that the ruffle placed toward the pocket.

    3. Serge across the top. Press the seam on both sides to set.

    4. Bring the lining to the wrong side of the pocket front and press along the seam.

    5. Using binder clips, secure the wrong side of pillow pocket to right side of pillow top.

  9. Serge Piping to Pillow Top:

    1. Place piping strip on right side of pillow front aligning the fabric edges.

    2. Using the cording foot, stitch the piping to the pillow front using a 3-thread overlock wide stitch, overlapping the piping ends.

  10. Serge Ruffles to Pillow Top:

    1. With raw edge of ruffles to raw edge of fabric, right sides together, serge first the 3” ruffle and then the 6” ruffle around the pillow top using a 3-thread overlock stitch.

  11. Attaching the Pillow Front to the Back:

    1. Unzip the zipper about half way. With right sides together place pillow back on top of pillow front.

    2. Serge around the pillow using a 3-thread overlock stitch. Press both sides of the seam to set the seam. Turn right side out and insert pillow form.

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