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Making a Pillowcase

Category Sewing
Homemade pillowcases
Making your own pillowcases is fun and easy. Pillow cases make great gifts. They can be made with beautiful fabrics of your choice and are often cheaper than store bought cases. This is a guide about making a pillowcase.


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By 14 found this helpful
December 22, 2010

This year, I am giving each of my grand-nieces and nephews (ten of them at last count!) a personalized pillowcase made of Christmas-print cotton fabric. My daughter is putting the names on the opening edge, so everyone will know whose is whose.


Each family has only 3 kids, so I bought yardage of three different Christmas prints. The pillowcases make it even easier when everyone gets home from the larger family Christmas craziness. I did these for my own kids several years ago and they still pull them off their pillows to use on Christmas morning!

I made the pillowcases a little big, using one yard of fabric for each case, turned the top under twice for a regular depth hem, and the normal 5/8 inch seam allowance on the side and bottom. I did double-stitch the bottom, just for reinforcements. Total sewing time, maybe ten minutes; Name printing time, probably closer to ten minutes each, using sharpie-type permanent markers.

Source: My aunt made all of us cousins cross-stitched pillow cases one Christmas, back in the day. I still have one of mine! Those were "normal pillowcases". The Christmas ones came out of my own frustration with multi-parted Christmas gifts that got all mixed up!

By MooseMom from Elk Grove, CA


Comment Was this helpful? 14

By 11 found this helpful
January 22, 2010

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

Comment Was this helpful? 11

December 31, 20117 found this helpful

As we outgrew our favorite skirts or long dress, my mom used to cut a pillow case out of it. That way, we kept our favorite skirts longer, and it saved on pillow cases. If you have long skirts, use them for king or queen size pillow cases.


Source: In memory of Catherine Arabie Payne

By Southernbelleklb from Jefferson, LA

Comment Was this helpful? 7

By 3 found this helpful
December 31, 2010

Personalized pillow cases cost next to nothing to make, and will be treasured by your receiver for years to come! This gift is appropriate gift for all ages, male or female. They are also easy-peasy to make.

Approximate Time: 1 hour or less



  1. If you are making your pillowcase from scratch, do this first. You can always use a new or used pillowcase too.
  2. Iron your pillowcase flat.
  3. Cut out the letters of your receiver's name, or shapes relating to their hobby, get creative! It doesn't need to be too neat.
  4. Iron your shapes.
  5. Using your gluestick, glue your shapes/letters in place. Use pins to hold them on as well.
  6. Sew around the edges with a needle and thread or sewing machine, being careful not to sew into the back
  7. Sew on any embellishments like ribbon or lace, wherever you like. Now your pillowcase is ready to wrap and give!
  8. By Emily from Sydney, Australia


    Comment Was this helpful? 3

By 8 found this helpful
February 20, 2014

After many washings a fitted sheet had seen its better days, but only in some spots. Not wanting to throw away a half way good sheet, I decided to make pillow cases from the good side. I used the pillow cases to make the pattern and as I don't have a sewing machine I just hand stitched while I watched TV. I made 3 pillow cases from the "ruined" sheet!

Total Time: about 3 1/2 TV shows

Yield: depends on the size of the sheet you use


  • 1 old sheet
  • sewing needle
  • thread


  • Simply use pillowcases you already have for the pattern, just double the sheet to get one pillowcase.
  • Comment Was this helpful? 8

    November 4, 20040 found this helpful

    Here's a good gift idea for almost anyone on your Christmas list: a pillowcase. For one standard size pillow case, purchase one yard of cotton fabric. I buy remnants usually for just a dollar or two a yard.

    Comment Was this helpful? Yes

    By 1 found this helpful
    June 14, 2011

    If you browse thrift stores as frequently as I do, you will find some very nice sheets. I am always searching for nice tricot or satin sheets to make pillow cases out of.

    Comment Was this helpful? 1

    By 0 found this helpful
    November 21, 2016

    I covered an old pillow with this fabric remnant from Walmart. I wrapped the pillow in the fabric, sewed three sides and then tucked in the open end and secured with three double tied bows. The remnant only cost me 75¢. Now during the dark winter days I have a pretty and bright pillow.

    remnant covered pillow

    CommentPin It! Was this helpful? Yes

    By 0 found this helpful
    December 22, 2010

    I am always trying to find inexpensive Christmas gifts I can make for everyone in my family. This year, I made pillowcases. I bought a yard of soft flannel for each case, with patterns on it that reflect what each member of the family likes.

    Homemade pillowcases with colorful designs.

    CommentPin It! Was this helpful? Yes


    Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

    By 0 found this helpful
    April 21, 2009

    I am looking for pillowcase patterns.

    Answer Was this helpful? Yes
    April 21, 20090 found this helpful

    There are several links for different pillowcases here: http://sewing.a  kly/aa061505.htm

    Reply Was this helpful? Yes
    April 23, 20090 found this helpful

    If you are making plain pillowcases, start with 1 1/2 yard of fabric, fold in half, sew 2 sides together and hem bottom. Can decorate with lace, ribbon, applique or whatever.

    Reply Was this helpful? Yes
    April 27, 20090 found this helpful

    Try there's one just been posted this's a tutorial I think. They have new stuff all the time.

    Reply Was this helpful? Yes
    April 27, 20090 found this helpful

    Remove the seams from an old pillowcase and use that for a pattern.

    Reply Was this helpful? Yes

    By 0 found this helpful
    January 24, 2010

    I would like to make my own pillowcases. Is there someone who would share the cut out dimensions with me? Also, does anyone have the dimensions for making a twin bed sheet?

    By Diane from Costa Rica

    Answer Was this helpful? Yes
    January 24, 20100 found this helpful

    My Mother always just measured the width and length of the pillow and added a little more for the width, plus some for the seam allowance and hem.

    Reply Was this helpful? Yes


    ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

    December 22, 20100 found this helpful

    Are you looking for a fun, inexpensive and easy craft to make as gifts for the Holidays?

    Try making pillowcases. There are many simple patterns online and since it takes such a little bit of fabric, you can really stretch your dollars and give everyone a nice gift. I have 19 nieces and nephews, and last year EVERYONE got pillowcases - I was able to pick out fun colors or themes that matched their personalities, hobbies or interests - and since I bought the fabrics a little at a time when they were on sale or I had a coupon, each one cost me around $3 to make, so I was able to stay within a very tight budget. The kids love them, and some of the parents even asked if they were getting ones this year.

    By Regina from Rochester, NY


    Making Pillowcases for Gifts

    A simple knit or crochet lace edging would be really pretty on the pillowcases. (08/21/2007)

    By Jantoo

    Making Pillowcases for Gifts

    I have another suggestion for a pillow case made out of polar fleece. They are warm and cuddly and oh so easy to make. You will find many other free projects on this same site. Type in then click go. When the page comes up click on "Hancock Fabrics Online Fabric Store"

    When the page comes up click on free projects at the top of the page. The pillowcase I'm talking about is called "Warm and Snuggle Pillow case". Click on that to find the instructions as well as a picture. You will find all sorts of free projects to look up,so have fun!! I especially like the polar fleece projects. Judy in Alabama (08/22/2007)

    By bjptl

    Comment Was this helpful? Yes
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