Home Sewn Pillow Cases

If I read this title somewhere I would probably think “How frugal would you have to be to sew your own pillow cases?” or possibly “How much time would you have to have on your hands before you would even think of sewing your own pillow cases?”.  If you thought something along those lines a moment ago, I forgive you.

A few weeks ago I went to the Dutch fabric market, a twice-yearly market in our local town. There is stall upon stall of fabrics, trimmings, patterns, buttons and basically anything you would possibly need if you were to sew something.



I had never been before and I will admit I was in over my head. I had no budget, no plan, no ideas of what kind of fabric I wanted or what I would sew with it. Not a good idea! I fell in love with a white cotton fabric printed all over with little grey geese. Beside it was a silver-grey and white polka dot fabric, which also caught my eye. I snapped up a metre of each with no idea of what I would use them for, but sure that they would work well together.


Once home, I decided that the fabrics would make the perfect pillow cases for our guest bedroom. I brought both fabrics and a pillowcase with me on my craft weekend recently and made my own pattern for cutting the fabric. I’d like to share that pattern with you now.

You will need

  • A standard rectangular pillow
  • Fabric in two patterns or colours (Fabric A for the back and the stripe at the front, fabric B for the main secion of the front and for the inner flap)
  • Thread in a matching colour
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine


Step one:

Iron the fabric. Then cut out a rectangle of 50 cm x 76 cm for the back of the pillow case (fabric A). Hem one of the narrow sides by folding 1/2 cm fabric over, ironing it in place then folding it over by another 1/2cm and ironing it in place. Sew it along the edge.

Step two:

To make the front of the pillow case, you will need three sections of fabric, as follows:

The main secion: a rectangle of 50 cm x 60 cm (fabric B)

The front stripe: a rectangle of 50 cm x 18 cm  (fabric A)

The inner flap: a rectangle of 50 cm x 18 cm  (fabric B)

All measurements include 1 cm allowance on each side for sewing the sections together.

Step three:

Sew together the three sections so that you have fabric A in between the large and small sections of fabric B.

Step four:

Fold over the inner flap and iron the seam, right side out. Then lay the back of the pillow case and the front of the pillow case on top of each other, remembering to line up the hem of the back with the top edge of the front of the pillow case.

Step five:

Sew the pillow case together on three sides, leaving the side open where the hemmed egde meet the flap. Turn the pillow case right side out, iron and insert a pillow.


5 thoughts on “Home Sewn Pillow Cases

  1. Love this! I made personalised pillow covers for all my nieces & nephews and was really touched to discover my almost-a-teen nephew still has his on his bed. It’s looking a bit worse for wear, so perhaps an updated one is in order 🙂

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