by Christina Dennis
When I'm in need of a very quick decor change in my home, I buy a little bit of new fabric and whip up a couple of throw pillow covers. Basic throw pillow covers are so easy to sew, and let me tell you - they can change the look of a room completely! My mom even has seasonal throw pillows - aqua blue for summer and deep red for winter.
This method of sewing pillows is a great beginner's project. It only requires sewing straight lines and there's a little bit of hand stitching at the end. Since there is no zipper or buttons, the case is stitched shut after the pillow form is inserted. Most pillows can be thrown into the wash all together (pillow form and all). Here's how to make these easy cases:
- 18 x 18 Indoor/Outdoor Poly Fill Pillow Form
- 1 yard cotton decor fabric (or try some more decorative fabric if you're more of an experienced seamstress) - this will cover two cushions up to 18" wide each (here I used Premier Prints ZigZag Slub Yellow/White and Papillon Paisley Brite)
- sewing machine
- hand sewing needle & thread
For the pictured pillow, I used ½ yard each of two different fabrics to make two pillows - one fabric for the front and one for the back. It was my friend's idea and I thought it was great! You could flip the pillows over dependent on what sort of mood you are in.
For an 18" wide pillow, cut two squares of fabric measuring 18 x 18 inches. I don't cut them larger for a seam allowance. I find making the pillow covers slightly smaller than the pillow forms makes the pillows nice and full looking.
Lay one piece over the other piece, right sides together & pin. Machine stitch around the edge, leaving a ½" seam allowance and an opening on one side of at least 10 inches (don't make it too small - I've made that mistake so many times). Trim the corners as above (so that there isn't excess fabric in the corners when the cover is flipped to the right side).
Flip the cover to the right side. Stuff the pillow form in. Stitch the opening closed by hand.
That's it! Seriously! It's such a simple method and this little project can pack a huge punch in your home decor scheme.
Here's one of my current favourite throw pillows made using this method. It looks extra fancy because I used some of this impressive-looking rosette fabric instead of regular cotton decor fabric: Splenda Satin Ribbon Rosette Yellow. Isn't it neat how different a pillow can look with a change in colour, pattern or texture?
If you could make some new throw pillows in a jiffy for your home, what fabric is on your "must use" list? (Check out my favourite place to buy fabric online, fabric.com, if you need some inspiration!)
Love the color combo you used with the chevron pattern on the back! I love shopping in the quilting section for fabric as they always have so many great colors and patterns to mix - the fabric isn't ideal as it's a little thin but a good solution for a quick update.
(good tip with leaving out the seam allowance - I always do the same with mine and I also round the corners otherwise my pillows always look like they have dog ears 😉
Thanks, Erin! The fabric choices were my good friend's and I really love them too. I think sewing cushion covers with quilting cotton totally works (especially if they're more seasonal/decorative)! Thanks for the rounded corners tip - good idea.
So, would 1/2 a yard of fabric cover for one 18" cushion cover? I want to make two cushion covers with two different fabric colors so I thought maybe 1/2 yard of each fabric might be enough...I wasnt sure weather in this tutorial you said that you made two whole covers out of 1 full yard, or just the one shown... Id like to know how much exacly I would need:)
Yes, 1/2 yard of fabric would work for one 18" pillow. I did make two whole 18" pillow covers out of 1 yard. 🙂 Since a yard is 36" long, exactly half (18") is perfect for one pillow. Thanks for visiting my blog!
Ok thanks! 😉
Hi, You did a great work on this article. I will definitely apply your suggestions that will suit us
Lindsay - The DIY Mommy
Checkout Goodwill or other thrift store for pillows. I found several! They were clean and did not smell. All measured 18 x 18. I plan to recover over the existing material and will add another inch of fabric at 19 x 19, plus add some decorative fringe. Inexpensive and easy!