A pillowcase pattern is amazingly simple to sew and is a great beginner project. French seam pillowcases can brighten up a bedroom and bring a smile to someone when you give them as a gift. Ready to get started? You’ll be surprised how quickly you can sew a simple pillowcase pattern with a French seam. Be prepared - you’ll want to make lots!
You can make the pillowcase pattern plain or add some lace or trim to the end. The advantage of using a French seam for this pattern is that the seams will last through lots of washes without the seam allowance fraying or the seams splitting.
Pillows can vary slightly in size according to your country and the pillow manufacturer but this pillowcase pattern will fit most pillows with a little room to spare.
In this pillowcase pattern, I have given you cutting instructions for standard, queen an king sizes.
These are some of the more common pillowcase insert sizes. Just grab a pillow insert out of the cupboard or off the bed and make your preferred size.
Here are the finished pillowcase sizes. Typically pillowcases are fairly loose and easy to get on.
Pillowcase Pattern Supplies
What you will need:
FABRIC – Purchase soft pure cotton fabric that is at least 44 inches (112cm) wide. Cotton and natural fiber fabric will breathe if you get hot at night and not irritate your skin.
Purchase these lengths of fabric
- Standard – 1 yard (0.95m)
- Queen – 1 ⅛ yard (1.05m)
- King – 1 ⅜ yard (1.2m)
Start by cutting out one piece of fabric in the following sizes:
More Pillowcase Pattern Tutorials
This tutorial shows you how to make a basic pillowcase pattern with French seams but I have more pillow and cushion patterns. Branch out with 10 more pillow patterns!
- How to Make a Pillowcase - This great tutorial shows you how to make a similar pillowcase with a border on one end. Great for using contrasting fabrics.
- How to Make a Cushion Cover – Envelope style cushion cover and one of the easiest for absolute beginners.
- How to Make a Doll Pillowcase - 2 styles of pillowcases for 18 inch dolls.
- Make a Cushion Cover with Piping - This envelope style cushion cover has piping around the edge.
- Tooth Fairy Pillow - For kids
- Pom Pom Pillows - Make a pillow with colorful pom pom trim around the edges.
- Star Pillow Pattern
- DIY Travel Pillow
- Christmas Pillow DIY - This pillow has a seasonal Christmas tree applique.
Pillowcase Pattern - The Video
Watch my video on how to make a pillowcase pattern. Like all my videos it is just short so relax and press play. Don't forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel for weekly sewing and craft videos.
Pillowcase Pattern - Instructions
Step 1: Hem the Long Side
On the wrong side, press over the 43 inch (109cm) side by ½ inch (12mm). On the standard and queen size, this will be the long edge. On the king size, this will be the shorter edge.
Press the edge over 4 inches (10cm) again to form a wide hem.
Stitch along the folded hem.
Step 2: Decorate
If you want to add lace or trim to your pillowcase pattern, stitch it along the outside of the wide hem you just created.
Do a double check before sewing and make sure any trims you use are not scratchy. You don’t want anything to come between you and a good night’s sleep. I find cotton laces are the best as polyester lace is often rougher. Cotton ric-rac looks great too and can add a pop of color.
Step 3: Fold in Half
Fold your pillowcase pattern in half with the WRONG sides together matching the raw edges and the edges of the hem.
Note that this is probably different from what you are used to (normally it is right sides together) to but this is how we create a durable French seam.
If you want to find out more about French seams then read my tutorial on how to sew a French seam.
Stitch around the bottom and side with a ¼ inch (6mm) seam allowance. You will be leaving the hemmed edge open.
Trim the seam back to ⅛ inch (3mm) and clip the bottom corners.
Step 4: Turn and Stitch Again
Turn the pillowcase the WRONG way out and give it a good press along the seam. Make sure the corners are poked out well.
Stitch around the bottom and side again ¼ inch (6mm) from the edge. You will notice that the narrow trimmed seam is now enclosed.
This will create a professional French seam that will give your pillowcase pattern the durability to last through lots of washes.
Step 5: Turn and Press
Turn your pillowcase the RIGHT way out and give it a final press and you are all done!
Pillowcase Pattern - In Conclusion
How long did that take you? Mine took around 10 minutes after I had cut it out. In fact, deciding on the right fabric and cutting took me longer than the sewing part. If you are a beginner, your first one might take a little longer but you will soon get the hang of it and make new pillowcases for your whole family.
Another Variation of the Pillowcase Pattern
Ready to make more pillowcases? If you are looking to make a pillowcase with a border, I have another tutorial to show you how. This is a great way to use up some of your fabric scraps and to add interest and contrast to simple pillows. (How to make a pillowcase with a border. ) Once you have joined the border, the technique is very similar to the tutorial on this page.