I can finally show you the pillow I made for my partner in the Cushion Cover Swap on Craftster, because she received it yesterday! Interestingly enough, I received from her yesterday too (even though I sent mine a week before she sent hers--what's up with that?), so I can also show you what she made for me.
In the swap, we all made covers to fit a 14" pillow form. According to Maimy's questionnaire, she likes keys (among other things), and since she uses keys in her avatar, I used that as the subject of the cushion cover I made for her. The colors are based on her preferences on her questionnaire, too.
I have some brown fabric with keys on it, but I didn't want her pillow to be brown, so I traced them from that fabric and drew them onto the linen I used as the center of her pillow. Then I outline-stitched each key, and looked at them for a while, before deciding that YES, I CAN fill in all ten keys with embroidery!
Each key took about 2 hours to embroider. This was the first large embroidery project I've done, and I loved it! It reminded me of coloring in a coloring book! I am eager to do more embroidery projects, but at the moment I have a LARGE project with a ton of handwork that I am working on for the Invite Your Partner swap, so other things must wait a few more weeks until that is done.
After finishing the pillow top, I layered it with batting and backing, and hand-quilted around the edge of the linen. Then I added a back, with a simple envelope closure (and a piece of velcro), and it was done! Maimy says she loves it. Yay!
And, here's what the talented Maimy sent to me, based on my love of koi and goldfish:
Isn't it gorgeous? The lotus, and the head, fins, and center line of the fish are painted on using a hand-cut stencil. The fish scales are a combination of embroidery, fabric, and beads, as you can see in the close-up below.
Here's the back of the cover, with another lotus. I left the snap closure undone so you can see that she sewed on her personal label--that's so cool!