Throw Pillow Covers

When the old throw pillow need new covers try this simple how-to.

When the pillows start to become raggedy or look straight out of the seventies it is time to make throw pillow covers.

You should first select a theme or color that will match your decor. Take a measuring tape (or string) and measure all the way around the pillow from front to back lengthwise, and front to back horizontally. Add an extra inch into you measurements for the seams. If you want to put a zipper on the cover than you should measure one end of the pillow

When you go to buy the cloth select a nice thick material that does not fray, snag or rip easy. If you have kids you may want to stay away from whites or very expensive cloth. A good material suggestion is a 50/50 cotton polyester blend. Test the material on the ends with your hand to make sure it is a good durable material. If you are going to put zippers on your pillow covers pick up ones that blend into your material, do the same with the thread.

Once you arrive home you should wash the material in the washing machine. After the material is washed and dried you can begin measuring out the material you need for each pillow.

For example: If you have a pillow that is 15" lengthwise and 12" width wise then you would measure out 31" (2 x 15" + 1" seam) lengthwise and 25" (2 x 12" + 1" seam).

After the material is cut fold the material so that the wrong side is out. (The wrong side is the side that you do not want shown when the pillow is done. For example, the printed side would be the right side.) Once it is folded it should be approximately the same size as the pillow but without the stuffing.

With the wrong side out there should be 3 open ends. Select which end you would like to put the zipper (if you adding a zipper) and sew up the other two openings leaving that one opening bare. When you sew remember that you have a half inch seam allowance on each of the three sides, otherwise sew ½ inch in from the outside edge.

Once both edges are done turn the material so that the pattern is now on the right side. You may want to put the pillow into the case and make sure it fits appropriately. Take the zipper and turn the right side of the zipper (the side you would show) towards the right side of the material. Pin the edge of the zipper to the edge of the pillow casing. Hint: Do not sew too close to the actual zipper, as the material may get caught while you are zipping. Once the zipper is pinned you may sew that one side.

To make a little flap that hides the zipper you should do the following for the other side. Unzip the zipper and fold the other half of the opening that is unsewn over so that only the right side is showing. The fold should be just long enough that when you press the unsewn side of the zipper up next to it the top of the fold goes just beyond the zipper. Pin the bottom of the unsewn zipper (the part with no teeth) along the bottom of the flap so that the teeth are at the top where the flap is folded over. Sew along the bottom of the zipper and the flap.

When you are done you should be able to zip the zipper and have a beautiful new look for your throw pillow.

© High Speed Ventures 2011