I can't bear to pay what stores charge for pillowcases, even on sale, so I make my own. With trial and error, I've learned that you can make 6 standard size pillow cases from one full-sized flat sheet with virtually no waste.
When I buy sheets, I don't buy sets, but individual flat and full queen sized sheets. If I can't find a matching full flat sheet, I'll get a coordinating solid color for the pillowcases. 2 full flat sheets will also make a queen comforter cover.
By soup-lady from near Boston, MA
My 3 daughters were born within a 5 year period, so they grew up very close together. They all loved having their own "special pillows" though, and it was a "bone of contention" until I started buying fabric remnants and making pillowcases just for them. The pillowcases didn't match the sheets at all sometimes, but I did try to keep everything close to the same colors etc.
Each daughter could help me pick out the fabric they liked best, and then they'd help me make the pillowcases. I think each of the girls learned to sew a straight seam by hand making those pillowcases. Those memories have become something to cherish and talk about almost every time we get together. They are all in their 50's now, but they still get a kick out of remembering those days.
Julia in Boca Raton,FL
I love your advice! I have long wished to make a duvet cover from sheets, but never knew the dimensions compared to sheet size. So thank you for that. (Ikea has wonderful sheets for $8 per.) I have also made pillowcases for years by using a yard of fabric, usually from remnant counters.
There is usually enough good fabric around a worn sheet's edges to make pillow cases too. The worn fabric is cut into strips to make rag rugs. I cut a small slit into the top of worn pillow cases to use as garment bags for my out of season clothes; just insert the top of the hanger that the garment is on through the slit, and your dress, coat, or whatever will be dust free next season.
I agree pillowcases are ridiculously overpriced and lately they are cut too narrow. I've returned some because I cannot get them on my pillow, so I have resorted to making some from flat sheets. I pick a neutral solid color that goes with everything.
I have a king bed and the individual sheets are too expensive to purchase separately. I look to buy sheet sets at the best price. I've found King flannel sheet sets in Target for under $20.
Love all the ideas of this post. My mom was super frugal, even when she didn't really "need" to but she grew up that way so I guess that's where part of it comes from. Anyway, she used to be a "clothes hound" & had a lot of circle skirts & flared dresses & in the 70's she started getting them out & going through them. She made pillow cases out of a lot of that material which these days, you probably wouldn't be able to find anywhere.
It was always nice to have those, especially when I was younger, made sleeping on one of them so comforting, like having my head in her lap when I was little asleep on the couch during a late night movie. When she passed away I got one of her favorite flannel nightgowns & made my son a pillowcase out of part of the fabric. A nice memento of his youth from one of his favorite & most beloved females.
Thanks for posting about this! I was just thinking about making something out of a few unused flat sheets, so now I know how many pillowcases I can make. Also, I've seen full-sized flat sheets @Goodwill (clearanced from Target) for $5.
Great ideas. Thanks for the suggestions. I, too, cannot bear topay what stores want for simple pillow cases. However, it is getting harder to find separate sheets.
I try the thrift stores like Good Will and Boomerangs.
Lee from J.P.
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