Heather Thomas

Embellish Using Pipe Cleaner Designs

Heather Thomas
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Duration:   7  mins

Learn how to use pipe cleaner designs on your next project by using them to create stuffed fabric tubes. Heather Thomas shows you how to stitch and easily turn the tubes and then gives several fun ideas on how they can be used.


Heather shows how to make stuffed fabric tubes using small strips of fabric and pipe cleaners. Pipe cleaners, also called chenille stems, are usually a standard size, however you can also find jumbo pipe cleaners and make much larger tubes. The tubes are stitched using a standard needle and presser foot, and Heather shows how to turn the tubes right side out using a techniques that doesn’t require any special turning tools.

Fabric Strips

To begin making the tubes for your pipe cleaner designs, Heather explains what width of fabric to cut. If using jumbo pipe cleaners you will need to start with larger fabric strips. She then shows how to stitch the tubes and explains what seam allowance and stitch length she uses. Heather then shares a tip for easily turning the tubes right side out.


Pipe cleaner designs can be used to embellish quilts, clothing or even be used by themselves as jewelry. Using the pipe cleaner tubes as quilt embellishments is a great way to add more texture to your design as the tube creates a raised surface. Heather shows how she stitched her pipe cleaner tubes onto the center of a small quilt as one of the main designs, however pipe cleaner designs could also be used to create a fun quilt border. Heather explains how after the tubes are stitched and turned right side out, they can be bent into any desired shape and stitched in place. The tubes have finished edges on all sides, so whether you sew them on a quilt or onto clothing, they can be laundered.

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One Response to “Embellish Using Pipe Cleaner Designs”

  1. Beth

    ‬ How do you deal with the raw edges at both ends of the tube?

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