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Saturday, September 22, 2007

Sew Pillows for Breast Cancer and Other Surgical Patients

Sewing Project - Ouch Pillows For Surgical Patients

Sewing Friends:

Our chapter of the American Sewing Guild is sewing Anti-Ouch Pouches for cancer patients who have had breast surgery.

Per the American Sewing Guild National Headquarters Caring and Sharing section of their website:

"This underarm hanging pillow is intended to add a little comfort to people’s lives during a stressful, painful time. The pillow hangs from the shoulder, fitting snugly under the arm to cushion the underarm and breast area after breast surgery or during radiation treatment. Its wedge shape holds the arm slightly away from the body when the person is standing. The shoulder strap is adjustable. The fiberfill can be adjusted via an overlapped opening. The design is meant to look like a tote bag, and may be used on the right or left side of the body."

What a gift of love for a friend or family member or even someone you don't even know.

Being a lung cancer survivor, I wish I had an anti-ouch pouch when I had my surgery. I'm sure there are other patients who would love an anti-ouch pouch, too. Much like the "heart pillows", it really helps to have something to hold against your body when you are really hurting. Think about sewing some ouch pillows for gifts this year.

Here are the instructions to sew an anti-ouch pouch pillow.

Whether you sew a "Smiley Face" Pillow or a "Heart" Pillow or an "Anti-Ouch Pouch" all patients young and old alike really appreciate them. Consider sewing pillows for:
  • Open-Heart Surgery Patients
  • General Surgery Patients
  • Mastectomy Patients
  • Pediatric Patients

Smiley Face pillows are really easy. Here is how to sew a Smiley Pillow.

  • Make a circle template by drawing a circle that is about 15 inches in diameter.
  • Using fabric markers, draw a smiley face on the right side of a piece of fabric about 16 inches square. You can also applique or embroidery a smiley face.
  • Lay a second piece of fabric right sides together over the first.
  • Trace around the circle template on the wrong side of the fabric.
  • Use short stitches to stitch around the drawn line leaving about a 4 inch opening.
  • Trim the excess fabric away leaving about 1/4 inch seam allowance.
  • Press and turn right side out.
  • Press again setting the seam on the edge.
  • Stuff the pillow
  • Stitch the opening closed.
It is easier to sew along the drawn line and then trim than it is to cut a circle and stitch around it.

Heart pillows for cardiac patients are similar size (about 15 inches) but they are heart shaped. Trace a heart and sew it just like the Smilely Face pillow. Be sure to use short stitches (1.5) and clip right to the stitching at the center of the heart to get it to turn out nice and smooth. A short stitch or two across the V in the center of the heart helps a lot.

Put your sewing skills to good use to help alleviate a little pain in someone's life. Use up some of your fabric stash. You don't have to be an expert to sew these pillows. Get the kids involved. If they can't sew, they can help stuff the pillows. This is a great home school sewing project.

There is nothing more rewarding than to give these gifts of love to folks who really appreciate them. It is so nice to know that someone cares! Make some ouch pillows to aid the healing process! It just makes sense!

To Your Sewing Success,


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Anonymous Ann said...

Thanks for this site,sewing work might be alleviate the little pain of that.

2:53 AM  

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