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Simple Sewn Pillowcases

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I learned to sew in the 4th grade in my4-H club.  My friend’s mother was our leader and she taught us how to embroider, sew and cook.  But I really haven’t done much sewing since then despite the fact that my mother is a pretty decent sewer herself.  If I needed something sewn, I just had my mom do it.  About 3-4 years ago I purchased a Singer sewing machine on special on Black Friday.  I had decided that at the very least I should at least own a sewing machine. Just in case.  About 8 months ago, I finally got the sewing machine out (!!) and attempted a “very easy” McCalls pattern to make a dress for my then 4 year old daughter. It was a total and complete disaster.  I could not figure out how to get the pattern to fit on the fabric.  I gave up and swore off sewing forever.

Then, a few months before Christmas I got the idea to make my husband and son matching ties.  A friend of mine makes ties for her sons to wear so I asked for the pattern.  And wouldn’t you know, with my mom’s help… I did it!  In the meantime my mother, who has been sewing for 30 some years, also tried the McCalls pattern for the dress… and she couldn’t figure it out either! It wasn’t me that was the problem after all.

So with my renewed confidence, I sewed pillowcases for my kids and I did the whole thing almost entirely by myself (my mom had to jump in and help with the bobbin because bobbins hate me).  I used a couple of different patterns for this and adjusted as I went.  This is a super easy sewing project and perfect if you are just learning to sew!

If you buy fabric that is 42-45″ wide, then you won’t need to cut it width wise.  Just use it as is and cut length-wise only.  It can get pricey to buy the fabric with licensed characters so an alternative would be to use plain colored broad cloth (what I used on the band on the openings) for the pillowcase and then use the patterned fabric for the band at the opening.  Broadcloth runs around $2/yard, which is pretty inexpensive!

I’ve never, ever written down sewing instructions,  so please let me know if you have any questions!

Simple Sewn Pillowcase


About 1 yard of fabric for the body of the pillowcase. You need 27 inches and 1 yard is 36 inches so you may be able to get away with 7/8 yard.

1/4 yard of  42″-45″ wide fabric for the band around the opening — or use the same fabric as the body and cut it to be about 9″ wide (same width as fabric)

Thread, pins, seam ripper (ha ha), etc


Cut the large piece of fabric so that it is 42″ wide (or leave it as is) and 27″ long.

Take the piece of fabric that is 9″ x 42-45″ and fold it half length-wise.  Use an iron to press it closed.

Pin the 1/4 yard band to the right side of the larger piece of fabric, cut edges together and on the side of the fabric that you want to be the opening.

Sew a the band on to the pillowcase using a 1/2″ seam.

Press the seam away from the pillowcase with an iron.

Fold the pillow, wrong sides together and sew up on short and one long side (pin if you need to).

Turn right side out and enjoy!


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  • Theresa
    July 9, 2013

    Got out my sewing machine & have been working on a few projects. I love quick & easy projects 😉 Great for teaching sewing too.

    • Camille
      July 9, 2013

      I was just thinking today that I really need to start on some Christmas gifts!