Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Need a quick but lovely gift or just need new pillowcases for your own home? It's quick, fun and easy to make a pillowcase. Here's an informal tutorial I put together tonight. Hope you find it useful! Excuse the photos because it is late. Jason will probably re-do them anyway.

First find two fabrics you love that look good together. The following measurements make a standard size pillowcase. You can adjust the measurements for any size pillow. For the standard pillowcase I made for this tutorial, you will need 3/4 yard for the body of the pillowcase and 1/4 yard for the cuff. I used the Sweet line from Moda. For the cuff of the pillowcase I chose the red dot and for the body of the pillowcase I chose the Sweet "Sassy" fabric with big red roses....pretty! (If you would like a kit for a pillowcase, check our website or Etsy store. or We will kit up any fabrics you like.

You will need a strip 8.5" by 44" (selvage to selvage) for the cuff of the pillowcase and a strip 26.5" by 44" (selvage to selvage) for the body of the pillowcase. Cut those two strips and iron.

Now fold the cuff (red dot) in half and iron. You will have a doubled strip 4.25" by 44" wide.

With the raw edges of the cuff on the raw edge of the pillowcase body, sew with a 1/4" seam.

Those of you lucky enough to have a serger can serge these together. I just sewed mine. If you are sewing it, go back now and zig-zag the edges, inside the seam line, to give you a finished edge. Be sure and do this with all the seams in your pillowcase. I've made a ton of these and they wash great and wear forever because of this step.

Iron the seam toward the body of the pillowcase and topstitch it down with a coordinating thread.

This is how it will look.

Next sew (again with a 1/4" seam), the long edge of the pillowcase. At the point where the cuff meets (raw edge to raw edge) is where I pin to make sure the seams are even. It's actually the only place I pin. Be sure to sew forward and back a few times at the edge to lock the stitches in place.

Be sure to remember to zig-zag or serge the edges. After stitching the long side of the pillowcase, stitch the end of the pillowcase closed with a 1/4" seam and finish the edges.

You have now finished your pillowcase! Just iron and use or wrap as a gift! Children really love these pillowcases made in holiday or theme fabric. I've made them from dinosaur fabric, Disney fabric, fabric with trucks, fabric with fairies, puppies and more. I hope you enjoy this little tutorial.


Tidy Brown Wren said...

This is exactly what I've been looking for. I'm making matching pillowcases for my grandsons and had planned to just "wing it". I'm happy to have REAL directions. Thanks so much for your help.

Kate @ The Gaines Gang said...

I was just giftted my very first sweing machine and was looking for an easy to follow pillowcase guide. Thanks so much for sharing the info!!

soggycheerios said...

Thank You, I looked at a lot of different pillow case tutorial and your was by far the clearest and easiest for me to understand. Thank You!

Anonymous said...

This is the best pattern/tutorial I have seen, especially the parts about zig zagging the raw edges (for those of us who are beginners and do not have a serger). Thank you so much.

Explicit Academia said...

Thanks for this! I don't know why other pillowcase tutorials aren't as straight forward as yours.

Anonymous said...

these instructions are so clear, I love it, off to buy fabric at the weekend, Thank you

Vanessa said...

Made a Halloween pillowcase for ourr grandson today using your easy to read and understand instructions :-) Thank You!!!

Maria said...

I have made several Christmas gifts from this tutorial- thank you! One note regarding measurements- Fabric is sold by the "running" yard. It is measure lengthwise, not width-wise. While a yard of fabric is 36 inches long, the fabric on a bolt of cloth can vary from 32 to 60 inches in width. The most common widths are 45 and 60 inches... I have run into several fabrics at home purchased by the yard that are only 42 inches. In those cases I adjusted both the body and the cuff to 42 inches in length and the pillowcases worked just fine on all our standard pillows. Thanks again!!

Anonymous said...

I sew quite a lot for my family and I am finding that most fabrics are now only 42 inches while patterns still base required yardage on a 45" should I adjust for this change? Any ideas?

Little Quiltsong said...

Great Tutorial! Love all the fast and easy steps. Thanks!

Dorian said...

So simple and easy, thanks for the great tips!