Easy DIY Envelope Pillow Covers

19 September
The other day someone asked me about wallpaper paste. They didn't know where to buy it or how to use it. When I told them it comes premixed and you can get it at Lowe's or Home Depot they then revealed that they have never wallpapered anything before.

I was a little shocked, I mean I thought everyone my age had wallpapered something at some point in their lives and with wallpaper making a comeback I just couldn't understand.

It was at this point that I remembered that not everyone has had the good fortune to have grown up in a family that is crafty and full of DIYers.

So what has all this got to do with pillows?

Well, I thought if people don't know how to wallpaper maybe they don't know how to do other things that to me are simple... like pillow covers!

So, I'm sharing my easy envelope pillow covers with you!

Easy DIY Envelope Pillow Covers

Make your own pillow covers

I made these for Bertha from a Buffalo Check flannel sheet that the previous owner's left on the bed. I love repurposing things like this!

The pillow inserts are down (feathers) and I got found them at the thrift store. Down throw pillow inserts are really the only way to go, they have a little weight to them and feel nicer, they are easy to fluff back up and you can give them that ever-popular karate chop to make them look like high end, expensive pillows! 😉

DIY pillow covers

The sheet I have is a fitted sheet so to make the fabric lie flat so I could cut it easily I trimmed off the elastic edge.

cut off the elastic

trimmed elastic

Once you have a flat piece of fabric lay your pillow insert on top of it to determine the width and cut a strip long enough so that it will wrap completely around your pillow. Typically I leave about an inch on each side for the seam allowance.

Lay the fabric right side up and place your pillow on top, near the center. Leave enough fabric on the side so that you can fold it over the pillow like this. You want it to be a little more than half-way over the pillow.

measure the pillow

Then fold the other side over the top of that, overlapping about 6 inches.

DIY pillow cover

Slide the pillow out carefully so that your fabric stays in this folded pattern.

Now put a pin where the folds are. We are going to unfold this to sew the end envelope seams so you'll need to know where to fold it again once that is finished. (You could also just put your pillow back and remeasure around it).

how to sew an envelope pillow cover

These end seams are made by folding your fabric over twice for the hem. You don't need a big fold, just 1/4" or so and you'll start with the fabric right side down and fold toward the wrong side.

rolled seam how to

Once you have folded your fabric over twice to create your hem it should look like this.

rolled seam

Now it's just a straight running stitch. You can do this on a machine or by hand.

stitching a hem

You'll have a finished hem that looks like this.

envelope pillow hem

Do this on both short ends of the strip of fabric.


Now refold the fabric, right sides together so it looks like this again and then sew the side seams.

sew the pillow cover

One tip I have learned over the years is to always check both sides of the fabric after you've stitched it together to make sure you caught both sides BEFORE you turn it right side out! It's always so annoying to find that you have a hole in the side after you've turned it right side out!

You can see here that my sides were jagged and so I missed some! If this happens just move your stitch in a little bit and redo it then cut off the excess.

make sure you catch both sides

Now, turn it right side out! You can use the ends of your scissors to help push the corners out.

envelope pillow cover how to

Then stuff the pillow insert inside!

buffalo check pillow cover

I made four of these for Bertha!

DIY buffalo check pillow covers

Easy DIY Envelope Pillow Covers

I checked out Etsy to see how much I would have to pay to buy pillows like these and for four it would be anywhere from $60 to $80 and that's not including the shipping!

I love it when I can make something myself and for a fraction of the price. These cost me about $12 for all four. I can usually find the pillow inserts for about $2.99 each and the sheet came with Bertha!

If you can't find down inserts, IKEA has them for pretty cheap too! IKEA duck feather pillow inserts.

So, what do you think? Is this too basic for you or did you find this post helpful?

Posted by: at 19 September Tag:

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