Ever since hubby and I got a new couch a few weeks ago he has been begging me to make some pillows to decorate it. Last week I dragged him to Joann’s Fabrics to help me pick out the fabric to make the pillowcases out of and the pillow forms. He can be a little picky so I didn’t want to pick out something and find out later he hates it. Hubby loved the Soft n Crafty Elite 24″ X 24″ pillow forms and a bright/bold pattern fabric. I bought the fabric since it was 50% off but I wanted to wait to buy the pillow forms when they go on sale for 50% off or when I can use a coupon. They were 30% off but I like saving more and President’s Day weekend was coming up so I know Joann’s Fabric was going to have some great deals. Sure enough, I was right. The pillow forms were on sale for 50% off President’s Day weekend! Yay! I went straight to the store and bought four of the pillows right after I got off work Friday.
I wanted to go simple with making the pillowcases for the pillow forms so I am going to make easy envelope style pillowcases with velcro (optional).
I got 24″ X 24″ pillow forms which mean I would need the width to be 24″ plus 1″ (for a 1/2 inch seam allowance) totaling 25″. In order to make an easy envelope style pillowcase, the length needs to be 54″. You need this amount because you want to double the size of the pillow (24″ + 24″) plus 6″ for the overlap to create the envelope style so the total comes out to be 54″. You can always add more to the length if you want more of an overlap. Your choice.
Quick Reference Equation:
I lay out my fabric choice on my cutting table, to cut out four 25″ X 54″ pieces.
Fold and Iron:
Next, you want to lay your fabric pattern side down on the iron board. You want to fold the ends of the long side of fabric between 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch and iron it down. Then you want to fold it again about 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch and iron it. This will result in a double folded hem and will change the total length from 54″ to about 53″.
Hem Length Sides:
On the pattern side of the fabric, stitch about 1/4 inch or less from the edge on both sides you just ironed down to the hem. I like to set up my stitching length on my machine to 2.5 so I get more stitches in. I also use a walking foot for my sewing machine so that the fabric doesn’t shift while I sew. You do not need a walking foot for your machine but it does make it easier.
Fold and Pin:
Lay your fabric down pattern side up lengthwise. Fold the right side to about 12″ toward the middle. Then fold the left side over the side you just folded overlapping it about 3 to 4″. You might have to adjust both sides a little bit to make sure it measures 24″ long. Next, pin or clip the open seams.
Sew & Serge:
Sew 1/2 inch seam allowance on both open seam sides. Then you will want to serge the edges so the fabric won’t fray. If you do not have a serger machine you can use a zigzag stitch on the edges to help prevent fraying.
Turn and Stuff:
Now turn your pillowcase right side out. Then stuff your pillow form inside and TA-DA! You are done if you are not going to add velcro. If you are adding velcro, continue on with the next steps.
Note: After I stuffed my pillow form inside the pillowcase I noticed that the opening on the backside kept sagging open a little so I decided to add Velcro to hold everything together and it also kept it tight and snug. Continue reading on if you want to know how I added Velcro to a finished pillowcase.
I turned the pillowcase outside in. I pulled the top overlap down to expose the first folded side. I cut a 6″ long piece of Velcro and pulled the pieces apart. I took the rough portion of the Velcro, centered it on the first folded fabric right against the hem, and then pinned it down. Make sure you only pin one layer of fabric.
Next, I placed the top layer (overlap) back where it was so I can feel where I pinned the first Velcro piece. This way I can align the second Velcro piece to the first piece. I placed my finger where the end of the Velcro folded back the overlap layer fabric exposing the first Velcro piece. Then I pinned the second Velcro piece on overlap fabric (print side).
Now sew the Velcro pieces in place. I like to sew around twice around the Velcro so it can stay secure. This way when you pull Velcro pieces apart the stitches won’t come out very easily over time. Also, make sure you move any excess fabric out of the way when you sew. You don’t want to sew other layers of fabric together. Only one layer.
Here are my four completed pillows! As you can see I like to match the pattern pieces. This way the pillows look very professional.
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