Have you seen those travel pillow things for kids? Yeah, neither had I. But one day my sister told me about them and said she wanted some for her kids for an upcoming 12-hour-each-way road trip. They looked simple enough, so I grabbed my scrap fabric bins, enlisted my children to pick out prints, and made seven of them, including three for my kids.
Because I was using scraps, and okay, mostly because I didn’t bother to actually look at the real deal until after I was all cut out and midway through sewing the things, mine are smaller. I’ll share my pattern, but you may want to increase it in both length and width. I think the straps are perfect, though. Just saying. These are nice for booster seat-riders because they really do provide a little bit of support, while unlatching and coming off with just a little bit of pressure. So I’m not worried about them in an accident any more than I would be any other travel pillow. You just thread the straps through the seatbelt thread things, velcro to themselves and that’s it. I was worried they would get in the way of the seatbelt running freely through, but it didn’t even effect it at all. So that’s good. I don’t know that they would actually catch a sleeping kid from completely falling forward, since they do come unattached so easily, but they provide a nice amount of cushion to make long rides more comfortable. I would think. We haven’t officially tried ours out yet. As for five-point harness riders? The real ones say to slap on some sticky-backed velcro to the shell of your seat to attach the velcro of the straps to. I didn’t bother because honestly, pillows for car seat riders are kind of overkill around here. My kids always just rest their heads against the sides of the car seat and let the harness keep them upright. But as illustrated by our model, the pillows are irresistibly soft and cushy, so I guess that makes them fun to snuggle. And I’m guessing after a few hours of three little boys trapped in the car, they will also double nicely as jousting poles. They’re a twofer!
So with that amazing introduction, I give you…
1 fat quarter of woven material, I used a cheap cotton
1/4 yard of jersey knit, or whatever fabric you want for the “pillow case”
The pattern PDF (two pages)
Cut out your pillow on the fold
Cut out two strap pieces, each 5 inches by 13 inches
Fold straps in half, right sides together. Sew across one short edge and down the side seam
Turn right sides out and press
Lay the straps with raw edges matching center raw edges of one section of the open pillow piece
Fold the pillow, right sides together so the straps are sandwiched inside. Make sure the raw edges of the straps stay lined up with the center raw edges of the pillow piece.
You may want to pin them in place.
Sew all the raw edges, leaving about a four-inch gap in the center.
Turn through the gap and you have this friend
On each strap, sew on a three-inch piece of the hooky side of the velcro about one inch from the end and the loopy side about four inches below that
Grab your Poly-fil and stuff your pillow using the opening/gap. I started out using shredded foam because it’s what I had on hand. It is crazy messy. I ended up going to the store to grab poly-fil for the others because this stuff drives me batty. Anyway, stuff it.
Fold the gap in
And sew it closed.
Now make your pillow case. Cut the material on the fold
Right sides together, sew along the long side
Hem both ends
Grab your completed pillow
And dress it in the pillow case.
Throw them in your kids’ car seats And get ready for a long leisurely trip of
being hit in the back of the head with a tubular pillow while yelling at your kids to stop whacking their brother peace and quite while your angelic children sleep away the miles and hours. ***********************************************************
Got a road trip planned? Read my OnStar FMV review to find out how to bring some peace of mind and ease of traveling to your journey.