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Sweet Dreams!

Sweet Dreams!

Make bedtime more fun with these adorable hand-decorated pillowcases.

By Kathy Oberman

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Bedtime just got better! Kids can turn ordinary pillowcases into customized works of art and make bedtime a lot more fun.

Children will love having their own special pillowcases, whether they design them on their own, with the help of a parent, or during a birthday or sleepover party.

Once they have their own personalized pillowcases, kids won't misplace their pillows ever again at slumber parties, campouts, or movie-watching marathons in the family room.

What You Need
Any pillowcase can be used, even one with a colorful print or crazy plaid. Solid colors may be easier to begin with, and those made of 100 percent cotton work best. But blends are fine.

It's not necessary to wash new pillowcases before decorating, although it's acceptable to do so.

You will need colored fabric markers or non-toxic fabric paint, available at local craft stores. If you use fabric paint, don't forget to buy paint brushes.

Stencils with the letters of the alphabet, numbers, or designs help make picture-perfect pillowcases. You will also need a sheet of cardboard large enough to fit into the pillowcase and act as a backing while you work.

Create Pillow Art
To get started, lay the pillowcase flat on a clean surface and insert the pillow-sized cardboard into the case. Set up the markers and paint where they are easy to reach but won't spill (only important for paint).

You can draw freehand animals, stars, hearts, moons or other shapes of your imagination - or use a stencil. Write your name or the name of your best friend. To make names or words look straight on the case, use a ruler and a pencil to draw a faint line. Arrange the stencils or write freehand.

You might decide to place the stencils randomly on the pillowcase. When making designs on print or plaid pillowcases, choose dark colors that matche the print or plaid.

Cookie cutters help you outline fun shapes on the pillowcase. To make geometric shapes, use cans, boxes, or bottles from the kitchen cabinet (make sure they are clean and dry) to trace around.

Some pillow artists will want to use iron-on fabric stencils, also available at craft stores. These require that the kids use a hot iron to make the fabric adhere to the pillowcase, so adult supervision is critical.

Once the kids have marked or painted the pillowcases, allow them to dry for 24 hours before sleeping on them.

Sweet dreams!

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