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Sew A Child’s Pillowcase

Updated on May 16, 2017
RTalloni profile image

Robertatalloni means creativity. Whether in writing or in more typical art forms artistry (and a bit of fun) must be part of the work.

A child's  pillowcase is a simple "I love you" project!
A child's pillowcase is a simple "I love you" project! | Source

Make a Special Pillowcase for a Child

Sewing a child’s pillowcase is an easy way to say, “You’re special to me!” Learn about choosing the right fabric, think through how to measure and make the pillowcase, and see some ideas on giving it in this hub for a beginner's sewing project. You can create a fun gift!

Tips to Consider Before Beginning the Project:

The fabric(s) should be machine washed and dried, then ironed, before cutting the pillowcase out.

Pay attention to the print’s direction before you cut and assemble a pillowcase.

Gather fabric(s) and sewing supplies ahead of time.

Set aside more time than you expect to need for making the first pillowcase. This is an approximately 1 hour project for the average seamstress.

When you finish early take pictures of your project, relax, and have a cup of tea.

Combining Prints!

Kids love fabrics with bright prints!
Kids love fabrics with bright prints! | Source

Fabric Choices

A high quality woven cotton is the best fabric choice for pillowcases. It breathes and does not stifle or scratch tender skin like a synthetic fabric will.

Kid print cottons are always a winner for children, but don’t throw out ideas for other fabric prints such as those with nature, geometric, and hobby designs woven in or printed on them.

Consider using two different prints to add interest to your project. I used a bright traffic sign print that most boys would enjoy along with a bold red and white striped design. The available choices are amazing--and fun to ponder!

Cutting Out the Pillowcase

Decide what size pillowcase you want to make.

• Standard size pillow is 20” wide x 26” long.

• Queen size pillow is 20” wide x 30” long.

• King size pillow is 20” wide x 36” long.

For a simple pillowcase made from one piece of fabric you would add 9” to the length and 1” to the width. To make a pillowcase with an added band for the hem you would need to add 1” to the length and 1” to the width, then cut out a 10” wide band that is 2 times wider than the pillowcase width.

Pillowcase cut at 21" wide (on fold) x 27" long, with band cut at 10" wide x 21" long (on fold).
Pillowcase cut at 21" wide (on fold) x 27" long, with band cut at 10" wide x 21" long (on fold). | Source

I made a standard size pillow case with a band from contrasting fabric. After ironing the fabric I folded the sign fabric (main piece) and striped fabric (band piece) in half, wrong side out.

I did not make a pattern, though that might make the process easier for beginners. A factory made pillowcase can be an easy guide for making a pattern.

Because the project was just two rectangles I simply marked the measurements directly on to the folded fabric. The sign fabric needed to be marked at 21” wide (on fold) x 27” long, and the striped fabric needed to be 10” wide by 21” long (on fold).

Note--if you do not make a pattern recheck the measurements after you mark the fabric for cutting because the age-old carpenter’s rule applies to sewing. Measure twice, cut once!

Once the rectangle(s) are cut out it’s time to pin and sew the pillowcase.

Assembling the Pillowcase

Pin side and bottom edges together for sewing.

If your pillowcase is a one piece rectangle and you are not applying a complementary band you need to sew a 1/4” seam along the bottom and side seams, making a nice neat corner. Then hem the pillowcase opening by folding and pressing 1/2”, then repeating so you can machine stitch along the edged of the inside fold.

Pinning the band to the casing.
Pinning the band to the casing. | Source
Stripes need to be lined up carefully.
Stripes need to be lined up carefully. | Source

After sewing the side and bottom seams of my pillowcase as above, I sewed the ends of my band together. Then I pinned the band to the pillowcase opening. After stitching with a 1/2” seam I pressed the sewn edges toward the band.

Pressing the band’s opposite edge down 1/2”, then pinning that folded edge to the seam that held the band to the pillowcase allowed me to finish the hem neatly with machine stitches. (See photos.)

Don’t you think that designing and making a pillowcase like this is an easy, useful, and happy sewing project? Imagine all the ways you could dress one up for a child to enjoy!



Finished pillowcase with a striking striped band will hopefully bring smiles to a little boy's heart.
Finished pillowcase with a striking striped band will hopefully bring smiles to a little boy's heart. | Source

Why Make a Kid’s Pillowcase?

I made this fun pillowcase for our grandson and tucked it inside his sister’s birthday box (with a few other small things) so he would know we are always thinking of him.

However, it’s not necessary to have an excuse or an occasion to create a project like this because any time is a very good time to let them know we love them!

For less than $7 this gift makes a big statement to my little grandson. I used it as wrapping for some boy stuff and such, but it could just as well be used as a gift bag to hold a larger present or some matching jammies.

If you come up with a new idea for making and gifting this pillowcase sewing project please let us hear about it! Leave it in the comments below or maybe write your own hub so we can see what you've done.

Do you think you will make this project?

See results

A No-Sewing Project

Other Creative Project Hubs:

Sewing is one craft among many that can provide you with a creative outlet as well as produce useful items:


Children's tee shirt projects are fun stuff.

Sew up some decorative fabric throw pillow slip covers.

Make a gift bag to be used as a tote bag by the recipient.

Make the most use of fleece blankets in the easiest way!

You can make a denim skirt bag to use or give.

This toy project can lead to sewing projects… :)


Tips for Sewing with a Pattern:

Easy Sewing Projects

If you want to practice beginner sewing skills check out the following:


• How to make a pillowcase.

• Check out this 4-H Book for teaching kids to sew.


Do you think pillowcases would be fun to design and make?

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    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 20 months ago from the short journey

      vocalcoach:

      Thank you kindly. It would be lovely to connect. Feel free to leave me your email address. Nashville's quite a distance and I don't get over there every year. Let me know if you are going to be in the Asheville area. I sometimes meet Knoxville friends there. So glad to know you enjoyed the pillowcase tutorial.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 20 months ago from Nashville Tn.

      I love how encouraging you are. I'm back in Nashville and wondering how far you are? Would love to get together with you! Thanks again for this marvelous lesson on sewing a children's pillowcase.

      Audrey

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 20 months ago from the short journey

      moonlake:

      I guess you can! :) And I hope you have fun designing some just for them! I'm hoping to zip some up for my grands to go in their Valentine's Day packages but not quite sure I'll get to it. If I gather supplies for all 6 and focus on nothing else while sewing them I could get them done in about a day.

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 20 months ago from America

      I now have two great-granddaughters. I guess I can now make some pillowcases.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      FigureCompetition:

      Thank you for stopping by and letting me know this will be helpful to you!

    • FigureCompetition profile image

      FigureCompetition 5 years ago from Northern Ireland

      Wonderful idea - I am looking for items to make for my daughters first bedroom and something like this would be a great addition - many thanks for the useful hub

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      amarhashi.com:

      Thanks much for letting me know you enjoyed seeing this easy sewing project!

    • profile image

      amarhashi.com 5 years ago

      it`s very good

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Thelma Alberts:

      Thanks kindly--the award was a pleasant surprise!

      Thank you, too, for sharing your input on this hub's project!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      writingfrosh:

      Thanks much for your congrats and for letting me know you like this DIY project for pillowcases. When you design and make yours I hope you'll let us see it in a hub! More ideas for them keep coming to my mind... :)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      mbergo:

      Thanks kindly!

      This project is wrapped up in all kinds of fun! :)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Victoria Lynn:

      Thanks, thanks, thanks for your comments on this pillowcase tutorial! :)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      J.S.Matthew:

      Thanks for checking out this gift idea and all of your input! It's a fun project to design and they are easy to make. I'm already rolling new ideas around my head. :)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      jpcmc :

      Yes, customizing the pillowcases is a great creative outlet that lets us show our love and care for the recipient. Thanks much for coming by and sharing your input!

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 5 years ago from Germany

      Congrats on the hub of the day! Making this pillowcase is a great way of showing your grandchild you love him/her. Voted up and useful! Thanks for sharing.

    • writingfrosh profile image

      writingfrosh 5 years ago from Philippines

      thanks for this great DIY project! I like to do it sometime...

      congratulations for being selected as the Hub of the Day!

    • mbergo profile image

      mbergo 5 years ago from Porto Alegre, Brazil

      Congratulations with the Hub of the Day.

      This seems like a really fun idea:-)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      StephanieBCrosby:

      Thanks for letting me know you enjoyed this hub and that it has inspired you to check pillowcases off your list. If you design some special ones maybe you could post them in a hub so we can see them. "Good sewing" with all your projects! :)

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Nice instructions! Great hub. Congrats on HOTD!

    • J.S.Matthew profile image

      JS Matthew 5 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      What a great way to show a child you love that you care! Awesome gift idea! Voted up and shared. Congratulations on the Hub of the Day!

      JSMatthew~

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 5 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      excellent idea. What's even great is you cancustomize the design based on what your child likes.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Sunnie Day:

      How very nice it is to know that this sewing project has inspired you!

      You'll have fun making them, but you'll have more fun enjoying your grandchildren's faces when you give them the pillowcases. :)

      Thank you for stopping in!

    • StephanieBCrosby profile image

      Stephanie Bradberry 5 years ago from New Jersey

      I love that you provide the measurements for different sized pillows. It's great that this was awarded the honor of Hub of the Day since I have a little time in my schedule to get back to the many sewing projects that have been on hold. And pillow cases were definitely on the list. So thanks for the inspiration.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      moonlake:

      Thanks bunches--'twas a big surprise today!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Sunshine625:

      Wow, I've certainly not made these by hand, but I can understand frustration with a machine! They are wonders when they work right, otherwise, not so much. Thanks much for your congrats--what a surprise to get Hub of the Day today!

    • profile image

      Sunnie Day 5 years ago

      What a wonderful idea...I am going to give this a try for my grandchildren..Thank you.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      alissaroberts:

      How neat that your mom is giving you sewing lessons! You will be making these pillowcases before you know it and your boys will be delighted with their pillow-hug from Mom!

      I appreciate your response to this hub very much. Thank you!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Happyboomernurse:

      Thanks much for your congrats--I was surprised this morning! :)

      And thanks for mentioning that these would be fun for adults. They would indeed!

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 5 years ago from America

      Just wanted to stop in and say Cograts on Hub of the Day.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      whonunuwho:

      Thanks for sharing your idea on using the print of this fabric to teach the importance of knowing what traffic signs mean. I hadn't thought of that, only that little boys like things that roll and beep and stop and go. I appreciate your input on this hub.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

      I've made pillowcases by hand. The sewign machine and I just do not get along well. Excellent hub! Congrats on your HOTD!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Your Cousins:

      So appreciate your comments here! Short projects that are quality messages of love and care are sometimes the best kind, aren't they? :)

    • alissaroberts profile image

      Alissa Roberts 5 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Although I never learned how to sew by hand, my mother has been giving me lessons on how to use her sewing machine so hopefully I can give this project a try soon. How cute would it be to update my boys bedding with some fun pillowcases! Thanks for the great step-by-step directions - congrats on your HOTD!

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 5 years ago from South Carolina

      Congrats on earning HOTD for this wonderful project hub.

      Love the gift presentation ideas you suggested, along with the step by step directions.

      I think this would also be a fun decorative project for adult purposes.

      Thanks for sharing.

      Voted up, useful, awesome, beautiful and interesting.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      mary615:

      Thank you for your congrats on the Hub of the Day award and especially for your comments as a seamstress.

      How precious that your children valued your handmade gifts to them so much that they are passing them on to their children. Thanks very much for sharing that here!

      My sister and a friend both told me about making pillowcases and when I discovered what fun they are to design I knew a hub had to follow. It's so nice to receive your positive input on it.

    • whonunuwho profile image

      whonunuwho 5 years ago from United States

      This was a great work on making pillow cases for youth. I was a teacher of kids in need for several years, and to have had a pillow case with all of the traffic signs would have been a plus for many of my kids who needed to learn these prior to getting a driver's license. Just in having a piece of the bright fabric hanging in my classroom would have been a great sampling of the traffic signs that they needed to learn, Perhaps this would be a great way to introduce kids to areas that they may need in learning other vital words and symbols in their future life, that may be needed. Thank you for sharing this.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      healthylife2:

      Thanks much for letting me know you like this idea and the hub's instructions. It's definitely possible for you to design some pillowcases for your boys! :)

    • Your Cousins profile image

      Your Cousins 5 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      I love projects that can be completed in one day, or in this case, maybe one hour. And it is always special to give a personal gift that you made yourself. Thanks for this useful HOTD.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      leahlefler:

      Yes you can! Thanks bunches for letting me know that you found this helpful and that the project inspired you. Maybe we'll get to see your bedding set in a hub that I could link to this one. :)

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 5 years ago from Florida

      Congrats on HOTD: well deserving Hub. As one who loves to sew, I really enjoyed reading this Hub. When my children were younger, I made all sorts of things like this for them, and now that they are grown, they still use them! Some of my things are being passed on down to their children.

      I voted this Hub UP, etc.etc. and will share.

    • healthylife2 profile image

      Healthy Life 5 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      What a cute idea and you make it look possible! There are many different pattern options for my boys. Congratulations on HOTD!!

    • leahlefler profile image

      Leah Lefler 5 years ago from Western New York

      This is great! My older son loves Star Wars, and our local fabric store has some Jedi fabric in stock. I can make him a cute little bedding set, thanks to your hub! I love this, RTalloni! And congratulations on HOTD!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      pstraubie48:

      Wow--I had not even noticed the Hub of the Day award until I read your comment--thanks!

      It's so good to know this pillowcase hub is useful. You can do it, and they are fun sewing projects because they are easy and you get to design them for special little ones. Thank you for all your input here!

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      RTalloni....This is cute cute. My sister is the semastress in our family but I think I might be able to do this. Your directions are so well described that I may be able to make one for both of my grandsons. Thanks for sharing this with us. Congrats on HOTD.

      Pinned and voted up.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Sharkye11:

      Thanks very much for all of your input on this pillowcase project! They really are a great way to give a child a little extra hug. :)

    • Sharkye11 profile image

      Jayme Kinsey 5 years ago from Oklahoma

      Voting up! This is a great pattern with nice, easy-to-follow instructions. I love the idea of making customized pillowcases for children. So much more personal for them than the selections offered in stores.

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      moonlake:

      Thanks bunches for letting me know of your friend's grandchildren's response to the pillowcases she makes for them! Maybe you can make some pillowcases up ahead of time--in anticipation of great-grandchildren. :)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      prasetio30:

      Thank you for stopping in with your affirming input on this pillowcase project!

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 5 years ago from America

      My friend does this for her grandchildren. They love it. I don't have little ones around to make them for. Hopeful a great-grandchild one day. Voted up enjoyed your hub.

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 5 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Very informative hub about child pillowcase. I still keep my pillow cases since I was kid until now. It has great memory. Thanks for writing and share with us.

      Best wishes, Prasetio

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      vocalcoach:

      Thanks for letting me know this encouraged you to try sewing. This is a very easy beginner's project.

      Nashville's not far…I could give you sewing lessons and you could give me web-writing lessons. :)

      I want to post a different method for making pillowcases soon, but have a few other writing/other projects to wrap up first. One method is as easy as the other, but there are a couple of reasons for knowing both. The bottom line is--you can do it! :)

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      I've wanted to do this for a long time. I haven't done any sewing before but have always had a desire to learn. I think a pillow case would be a good place to start. I also want to make pillow covers do I'm going on over to your other hub and learn how to do that. Or...you could just come visit me here in Nashville, Tn. and we could have a sewing party!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Jamie Brock:

      Thanks very much for letting me know you like this pillowcase idea and that you plan to make some. I'm thinking about how cute they would be in prints for every holiday! Hope we get to see some of your designs. :)

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Vellur:

      Thanks for your input on this hub! I'm glad to know the instructions are clear and that you like the idea!

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 5 years ago from Texas

      I love this.. it such a great gift idea. I could see making one or a few of these for my 4 year old son, Devin or even my older kids. I appreciate your easy instructions and photos. I think maybe I'll do one for each of the kids for Christmas this year. It's easy and inexpensive yet such a special gift. Thank you for sharing this, voting up!!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Pamela99:

      Little ones really can be delightfully appreciative about small things, can't they? They could teach grownups a lot if we would listen!

      Thanks bunches for letting me know you like this project!

    • RTalloni profile image
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      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      teaches12345:

      Thank you very much for sharing your input here. How precious that you still have the pillowcases your mom made. A simple gift, yes, but a cherished display of her heart for her grandson that you can hold in your hands today!

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 5 years ago from Dubai

      This is a great idea. The instructions are easy to follow, thanks for sharing.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 5 years ago from United States

      This is an adorable idea if you have young children or grandchildren. Children get so excited about this type of gift. Useful also.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      My mother made some very special pillow cases for my child. I still have them today even though he is grown and out of the home. Thanks for reminding me of how much a simple gift like this means so much.