Holiday Bells Pillow Tutorial

Holiday Bells can be knit using two strands of a DK or worsted yarn held together, or one strand of a bulky yarn. The suggested gauge of 3½ stitches to the inch can be adjusted to accommodate the yarn selected, making this a perfect pattern for using up stash yarns. Learn how to add the bells to this pillow and your future knitting designs.

  • Working with two strands of yarn held together
  • Adding bell embellishments

Note: For purposes of this Tutorial, CO 27 sts, using two strands of yarn. The actual sample pillow is worked over 47 sts. If changing pillow size, always cast-on a multiple of 10 sts + 7.

Working with two strands of yarn

Using US size 9 (5.5 mm) needles, or size to get approximate gauge, CO 27 sts, holding two strands of yarn together. Needle size can be adjusted as needed to create an approximate gauge of 3½ stitches = 1” and a fairly firm fabric.

When working with two strands of yarn, simply hold the strands together and work as usual. Make sure to pull each strand from its respective ball evenly to avoid loose stitches.

Alternate method:  You may, if desired, wind the two strands together into one ball and work from that one ball.


Casting on 27 stitches using two strands of yarn.

Work 4 rows in Seed St, starting with a purl stitch. Because there is an odd number of stitches on the needles, every row will be the same: *P1, k1; rep from * across row to last st, ending with p1.


Seed Stitch border

The next row will be Row 1 of the Seeded Boxes pattern stitch. It is a right-side row.

Row 1 (RS): (P1, k1) twice, p1, place marker (pm), k7, (p1, k1, p1), k7, pm, (p1, k1) twice, p1.

Row 2 (WS): (P1, k1) twice, p1, slip marker (sm), p7, (p1, k1, p1), p7, sm, (p1, k1) twice, p1.

Rows 3-8: Rep Rows 1-2, 3 times.

Rows 9-10: Work in Seed Stitch across both rows, starting with a purl stitch.

Rep these 10 rows to complete the swatch and check your gauge.


Placement of markers and checking gauge


Swatch showing two repeats of Seeded Boxes pattern. Note

that 5 sts are worked in Seed Stitch at the beginning and

end of each row and 3 sts in Seed Stitch separate the interior


Attaching the bells

Bells will be attached to the front of the pillow before the seams are sewn. Attach bells as follows:

  1. First, decide which blocks will contain a bell.
  2. For each bell, cut a piece of embroidery floss or heavy sewing thread, similar color to the yarn used for knitting, approximately 10” long. The thread will be trimmed after the bell is attached.
  3. Pull the floss or thread through the opening at the top of each bell. (Optional tip: After pulling the floss/thread through the bell, you may tie the ends together to hold the bell in place if desired.)


             Threading the bell

  1. Position the bell in the center of the block.
  2. Pull each end of the floss/thread to the back of the fabric using one of two methods:a. Insert a crochet hook from back to front on each side of the center (knit) stitch. Pull the end of the thread on each side of the bell to the back.


Pulling threads to back of fabric using a crochet hook

b. Thread each end of the floss/thread onto a sewing needle and bring each end to the back of the fabric.

  1. Knot the ends of floss/thread together firmly, making sure that the bell can move freely (and “ring”) on the front of the fabric. Trim ends of floss/thread to about 1”.


Knotting thread holding bells on reverse side

Directions for sewing the pillow together over the pillow form are included in the pattern that follows.yarn ball

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