Not a Stuffie

My husband loves fishing.   And it is his birthday today.  And like most men he is impossible to buy for (mainly because if he wants something he buys it himself).  So my daughter suggested that I make him a quilt for his birthday (win, more sewing!).  But at this point it’s already February 1. And I have a long list of other things to finish. (I can see you snickering, yeah, you in the corner over there.)

How about a pillow? I suggested.  

A pillow shaped like a fish, Mom!  

No, because that would be a stuffie (stuffed animal toy).  A fish on a pillow, I said.  

A walleye!

pattern piece
applique outline

A quick Google search found a walleye outline, which I printed on 2 sheets of paper so the resultant fish is about 18″ long (nice size for eating).  I turned over the sheet and traced out a simplified outline in reverse, then traced that onto the fusible web.   The Cotton +Steel netorious in cloud silver was a natural choice, with Kona ash to complement and give the 3 dimensional effect.   Walleye have an eye that reflects light, they are predators which effectively hunt at dusk and dawn, so the netorious in gold made the perfect eye. Some people call these pickerel, although they are different from the American midwest fish.

eye detail

Here is a photo of one about to be filleted for comparison, after an outing where Sidney caught 2 walleye, I caught one, and I think the little perch was Frank’s.


The background is Kona storm, and I used Hobbs premium 80/20, because I wanted a bit more loft than the Warm and Natural which I use most often.  Some simple wavy line quilting with a few bubbles and swirls to imitate ripples finished the front, and for the back I had found this flannel print of fishing rods at the thrift store a few weeks ago.
quilting detail
walley pillow back

He really liked it. Finished size is 17″ x 26″ to fit a standard bed pillow.


Appropriately enough, I am linking up to Sandra at mmmQuilts for DrEAM (Drop Everything and Make it).



  1. I love it! And the photo of Sidney. And I got to learn fish knowledge! Who knew about the reflective eye. Cool! Your writing made me grin more than once, thank you!

  2. Wow! I want to “copy” your pillow. My son is an avid fisherman too! He fishes mostly for big mouth and small mouth bass! What a win!

  3. That fish is almost lifelike! Well done! Can’t wait until my grandsons are old enough to take fishing.

  4. Oh, my goodness, I am so very impressed! You did an awesome job and I am so inspired to think more ‘out of the box’ the next time I need a special gift! Well done!

  5. Really nice quilting job!!

  6. What a great idea. It’s awesome. Pat yourself on the back for a job well done.

  7. Lisa this is FABULOUS!! I think you used the same free graphic I used for the walleye hot pad I made for my husband last year. Walleye are beautiful fish, and his favourite to both catch and to eat. That 80/20 is one I am quite liking lately and, like you, I am a Warm n Natural girl too. Beautiful work and fabric choices. Thanks for linking up and being a shining example of a DrEAMi!

  8. AWESOME!!! I have a lot of fisherpeople in my family, too. I am going to keep your idea in mind for a future gift. It turned out beautifully!

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