The Pizza Pillow

Mr. Jibbles tests the prototype.*

I saw Sleepwalk with Me this weekend, the lovechild of Ira Glass and comic Mike Birbiglia.  The movie adaptation was great– all the great, sidling disasters, goofy but right-on metaphors, pillows made of pizza, Lauren Ambrose.  If you haven’t heard Birbiglia do stand-up, get over to the This American Life page and listen post-haste!

Unfortunately, there are no stills of the pizza pillow or video.  All I can say is that someone thought it would be awesome if your pillow was made of pizza.  Ultimate in lazy heaven.  Sleep on a pizza.  The scene was bizarre (I just typed “the scene was pizza”).

It’s been a while since I’ve had time to just craft for funsies, and the pizza pillow idea stuck in my head.  The tipping point was when I searched for other people making this specific pizza pillow, and nothing existed.  I decided to take a chance on something great.  I’m not sure if the Pizza Pillow will end up at the Jumbo Jibbles store, due to it not being my idea, but if I can get a thumbs up from Mike Birbiglia, maybe I’ll do it.

Must. Make. It. Exist.

How to Make a Pizza Pillow

First, sketch a little travel pillow shape.  It can be thinner or fatter than this, and if you have a travel pillow, you can trace that.  If you are new to making patterns, remember to just fold the paper in half and draw half the shape.  That way it will be symmetrical (if that’s what you’re going for.)  Also bear in mind that a little extra thickness should be figured in to the pattern– you should sew at least 3/8″ away from the edge of your fabric, so factor that in.  For beginners, definitely go for 5/8″.

Cut two pillow shapes from a crust** color and a cheese color.  This is entirely up to your pizza preference.

Cut out your pattern piece and trace it onto your fabric (I use a disappearing ink marker), crust and top.

And here’s where I stop doing things in the right order and go rogue.  There’s probably some uncaptured frames of me completely forgetting what I was doing and get sucked back into watching Parks and Recreation episodes for the 4th time.

Oh, pepperonis!  I didn’t wander off after all.  Pepperonis, even felt ones, make me sad.  The Jibbles are both vegetarian, but I’m the odd kind that really, really misses pepperoni pizza. I can still taste it, seven years later… anyhow, cut out some circles.  I ended up with 18.  Practice placing them in a pleasing way before pinning them on later.  Take off the pepperoni and pin the two top- and bottom-crust pieces right sides together.  That means the sides you’d like people to see are on the inside.

With a 3/8-5/8″ seam allowance, go around the whole shape, leaving a gap of 8-10″ for stuffing.  I chose the back seam of the pillow.  Don’t forget to make a lock stitch at the beginning and end of this seam so nothing comes apart while you’re stuffing.

To prevent weird bunching on the curved part, cut little notches into the inner curved part of the seam.  Careful not to cut through the stitching!

Sewn, turned inside out– looks like a safety toilet seat.

Or one of those flappy little airplane life jackets.  It is a total coincidence that this all coordinates.

Stuff each end of the pillow in small pieces at a time, taking care to fluff up any pieces of polyester or cotton stuffing that look compacted.  Think of it as tilling a garden.  The ground is softer without rocks.   Stuffing the interior closest to the gap will be more challenging.  Pinning the two sides together while stitching it up is absolutely necessary.  Line them up best you can.  I used a blanket stitch to close the gap.  But you may get adventurous and include a zipper so that it is a pillow cover instead.

Might have made it a little too skinny.

Oh, who cares? I got a pizza pillow!  Pin the pepperonis on the top crust in the desired arrangement.  This is a good time to get creative with other toppings, too.  My next pillow will have feta, peppers and olives.  Mmmm…

With pepperonis in place, blanket stitch around each circle.  Tidy up any loose threads, and you’re done!

IT IS EVERYTHING I’VE EVER WANTED.

*He is reading Dune, if you were curious.

**This project is gluten-free.

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4 Comments on “The Pizza Pillow”

  1. dead_elvis says:

    Just for reference/comparison to the movie version, for those who haven’t seen “Sleepwalk” yet (no spoilers, don’t worry): http://bit.ly/UKe9Nn

  2. birdjibble says:

    AAAAAAH!!! I have been trying to find even just a screen shot of that. I’ve had this email in my inbox since I went on holiday and have been dying to tell you how much I appreciated this. Thanks!

    • dead_elvis says:

      Found it while looking for a simple screen shot as well, but much deeper into GIS results than this post & figured I had to share it with you. Glad you enjoyed it!

  3. […] these incessant pizza pillow ramblings will alert Mike Birbiglia and I will finally get the internet-hug from a celebrity I […]


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