Framed Embroidered Pillow Cases

My mom had given me beautiful hand embroidered pillow cases that my grandmother had made. My grandmother was a very talented lady especially in hand embroidery. I wish I could show you all of her stunning work, but at least you get a glimpse of it with the pillow cases.

I decided to frame her beautiful work to perserve them and my grandmother’s memories.

Since the pillows are square [as most pillows are!], I had difficulty finding square frames. The pillow cases are 16×16 and 15×15. I did contemplate doing custom framing, but first I thought to check out the decorative frames and leave custom framing as a last resort. I knew decorative frames would not have a typical frame backing, but if the art work in them was removable, I knew I could make them work. Hobby Lobby is always my first stop for frames, and thankfully the week I went they had 50% off all decorative frames (it’s usually every alternating week). After measuring a whole bunch of frames I did finally find two!

On the back of decorative frames, you’ll find paper backing and underneath the paper is foam core acting as the backing for the art work. The foam core and the art work are held down by staples. Sounds fairly easy to remove, and it was. The problem I was confronted with was I needed to remove almost all the staples to get the glass out. See, the frames I bought were dark brown and I wanted to spray paint them an ivory color and distress them. I had hoped to keep the staples to hold everything down, but the glass wouldn’t come out without removing the staples. Some of the staples were stubborn and needed a good tugging which is what made the project more time consuming than expected. A second problem I was confronted with is the foam core. I wanted to reuse it but it was strongly adhered to the art work. Arghs! I didn’t want to have to delay the project by going out to buy foam core, which I couldn’t do until the next day. Eventually with some trial and errors (and killing the foam core which needed to be taped back together for one of the frames…ha!) I made it all work! I used packing tape to hold everything down, and closed off the back with kraft paper. I used permanent double sided tape to adhere the kraft paper.

I love how the pillow cases look framed. I’m so thankful that my mom gave me a beautiful memory of my grandmother to hold on to.

I plan on incorporating my grandmother’s pillow cases into my winter mantel which I’ll be sharing with you in the next post. I hope y’all will join me. Until then.. have a wonderful weekend!


  1. November 30, 2012  9:09 am by Nadia Reply

    Omg.. Stunning!!! Lucky girl you are to have these!

  2. November 30, 2012  9:22 am by Jenan Mohajir Reply

    beautiful! LOVE them :)

  3. November 30, 2012  9:37 am by ColleenB. Reply

    WOW! The pillowcases are Gorgeous and you done a wonderful job in framing them. They look great.

  4. November 30, 2012  9:38 am by Aziza Reply

    Awww, I love these! Very well done, and a great way to preserve them!

  5. November 30, 2012  10:00 am by Rana Reply

    Wow, these are so beautiful.

  6. November 30, 2012  4:43 pm by stacysewsandschools Reply

    Absolutely gorgeous! You are so very lucky to have them! And that is an awesome way to display them!

  7. November 30, 2012  5:06 pm by Nikky Reply

    What an absolute cherisheable keepsake you have! Lucky you. Well done on the framing, this way you can see them all the time without the fear of getting them soiled. Thank you for sharing these with us. Nikky

  8. November 30, 2012  8:10 pm by amy of while wearing heels Reply

    Those pillows are beautiful. To think of your grandma lovingly making those, how touching. I love that your mom gave them to you an that you took the time to frame them (despite fighting with the foam backing). I can't wait to see them displayed on your mantel. Absolutely stunning.

  9. December 1, 2012  1:22 am by dajudges Reply

    I love your grandmother's pillow cases they are beautiful and you have made them into beautiful framed pieces.

  10. December 1, 2012  6:05 am by Karen @ Folk Haven Reply

    These are so beautiful... Your grandmother was very talented indeed! (Now we know where you got the creativity genes!) Now that they are so beautifully framed they will stay in good condition and can be enjoyed for many years to come. Can't wait to see the winter mantle!

  11. Pingback : Ode to Inspiration » To all the people and things that inspire me and motivate me to jump into projects I never thought I would do! I hope you get inspired too! » Winter Mantel

  12. December 5, 2012  9:34 am by Crystelle Reply

    What a great idea to frame them! They looks so classy..../

    hugs x

  13. December 6, 2012  7:46 am by Amanda Reply

    Ooooo! I love everything about them! I think it's neat to decorate with these that are meaningful.

  14. December 6, 2012  8:50 am by Marilyn Reply

    LOVE this idea! I just got a bunch of handmade crochet doilies from my mom that were done by her and my grandmothers. I think I just may frame them!

  15. December 7, 2012  1:52 pm by Manar Reply

    What a lovely project! I cherish the embroidery/tatreez my grandmother has given me. I've recently found a charity organization that supports women through tatreez projects...I've decided to purchase some of their items, especially the pillow cases, to give as birthday/holiday gifts. I think framing the pillow cases will add a nice personal touch. Thanks for the idea!

  16. Pingback : Ode to Inspiration » To all the people and things that inspire me and motivate me to jump into projects I never thought I would do! I hope you get inspired too! » Spring Mantel

  17. Pingback : Ode to Inspiration » To all the people and things that inspire me and motivate me to jump into projects I never thought I would do! I hope you get inspired too! » Eid {Al-Adha} Mantel

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