Do not be discouraged if you are a beginning sewer. This post is just as much for you as for an experienced one. All you need to do is sew straight lines and you have made yourself an easily changeable pillow cover.
These are my favorite pillow covers to make. They are quick and easy to change out for seasons and holidays. No zippers to mess with or cording to place in these.
I am using a drop cloth for my pillow fabric. I love them! They are inexpensive, durable, and add a little farmhouse flair. Iron on a little heat transfer vinyl design and you have a little piece of heaven. Can you tell I love me some drop cloths?
To get started you are going to need a few things:
- pre-washed fabric (amount will depend on the size of your pillow insert)
- scissors &/or rotary cutter
- Mat for rotary cutter if using
- straight pins
- sewing machine
- thread that matches fabric
Step 1: Cut the front cover piece. Whatever the size of your pillow insert will be the size of your front piece. I do not add extra for the seam allowance. This creates a nice full pillow instead of a saggy one. My pillow insert is 18×18.
Step 2: Cut the 2 pieces for the back. If your fabric has a directional design, make sure they match the front piece. To get the dimensions for the back pieces, divide the full length in half and add 5 inches. The width will remain the same as the front piece. My front piece is 18×18 so my 2 back pieces will be 18 in. wide x 14 in. long. The extra length allows for seam allowances and the overlap to create the envelope.
Step 3: Sew the bottom edge of the back top piece and the top edge of the bottom back piece to finish off your overlap edges. Fold the edges over 1/2 inch and then fold over again to hide the raw edges. I think it is easiest if you iron these down as you go so you don’t have to pin it to death. I like easy! Time to sew your straight line near the edge of the open seam on each piece. No need to backstitch these because they will be inside of the side seams.
Step 4: Lay the front piece right (good) side up and your two back pieces right (good) side down with your top back piece overlapping the bottom back piece, lining up the corners as you place them. I do not have a right or wrong side since I am using a drop cloth. Now it is time for the pins. Place pins in each corner and a few along each edge. Head to the sewing machine and sew around the entire edge of the cover using a 1/2 inch seam allowance (1/2 inch in from the outer edge). I like to start on the bottom of the pillow, but it doesn’t really matter. When you come to the corners it is easiest to stop where you want to make your turn, make sure the needle is down in the fabric, lift the presser foot up, turn your fabric and then place the presser foot back down. Repeat at each corner.
Step 5: Trim the excess fabric in each corner with your scissors or better yet pinking shears if you have them. This will remove the bulk from the corners and they will lay nicer. The pinking shears will decrease on fraying of the fabric. Be careful not to get too close to the stitch line and create a hole in your corner.
Step 6: Turn the cover right side out and push the corners out with something pointy but not sharp. Most of the time my fingernails work just fine as long as the fabric is not too thick. Stick your pillow insert in and admire your work!
See that wasn’t so bad. Each time it gets faster and easier. You can make endless amounts of covers to change up your decor.
If you have any questions please let me know. I will be happy to help.
Thanks for stopping by!