How to Sew a Pillow: Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

Thinking about giving a different look to the interior design for your house in a cheap and different form, giving a personal touch to the home decor is another easy and cheapest task you can …

Thinking about giving a different look to the interior design for your house in a cheap and different form, giving a personal touch to the home decor is another easy and cheapest task you can do in the living space. For the start of the change in the storage decorator, you can have a different style of your choice. You can have an idea for designing and decorating your home. In this blog, we will give some valuable tips for the different forms of style that you can go with for cozy and attractive decor, along with tips for selecting materials, choosing a design, swing seams, and adding decorative elements.

Key Takeaways

  • Sewing a pillow is a fun way to add a personal touch to your home decor.
  • With some basic supplies and a little bit of patience, even beginners can create beautiful pillows.
  • Steps to sewing a pillow include gathering supplies, choosing a design and fabric, preparing and cutting the fabric, sewing the pillow seams, adding decorative elements, stuffing and closing the pillow, and adding finishing touches.

Gathering Supplies for Pillow Sewing

Before getting started with pillow sewing, gathering all the necessary supplies is essential. Having all the materials on hand makes the process smoother and stress-free. Below is a list of crucial items for beginners:

Item Description
Fabric Choose a durable, washable, and comfortable fabric. Cotton, linen, and polyester blends are great options.
Thread Pick a high-quality thread, preferably in a matching color to the fabric. Polyester or cotton threads work well for pillows.
Needles Select appropriate needles based on the type and thickness of the fabric. For example, 100/16 needle size for heavier fabrics and 80/12 for lighter ones.
Scissors Choose sharp scissors that can cut through the fabric easily. It is better to have a separate pair of scissors specifically for fabric cutting.
Stuffing materials Select the stuffing material based on the pillow’s desired firmness and comfort level. Polyester stuffing, polyfoam, and down feathers are popular options.

Investing in high-quality materials when making a pillow is essential, as it affects the overall look and feel of the final product. Additionally, it is necessary to have an adequate amount of each material, especially fabric,so you don’t run out in the middle of the project.

Choosing a Pillow Design and Fabric

Choosing the right pillow design and fabric is essential to creating a beautiful and functional result. Whether you are making a standard square pillow or a decorative one, many options exist.

Types of Pillow Designs

The first step in choosing a pillow design is to determine its purpose. Are you making a pillow for a specific room or occasion, or do you want a versatile pillow that can be used anywhere? Here are some standard pillow designs to consider:

  • Standard square pillow
  • Decorative pillow
  • Pillow cover

A standard square pillow is a classic choice for a bed, sofa, or chair. Decorative pillows can add up a pop of color or pattern to a room and come in various shapes and sizes. A pillow cover can easily change the look of an existing pillow.

Choosing the Right Fabric

While you are choosing the pattern for the different problematic levels, there are numerous patterns to choose from, and the solid pillow is one of the patterns that you will have an opportunity to choose different forms with numerious decorative styles. They are also the opportunity to explore and introduce the texture! Texture solid elevates your look while creating balance. . Here are some tips for choosing the suitable fabric:

  • Consider the room: Consider the colors and patterns where the pillow will be used and choose a fabric that complements them.
  • Consider the use: If the pillow is in a high-traffic area, choose a durable fabric like cotton or linen. You can use more delicate fabrics like silk or velvet if it is used for decoration only.
  • Size matters: Be sure to choose a large fabric to cover the entire pillow form, plus an extra inch on each side for seam allowances.
  • Pattern or solid: Decide whether you want a patterned or solid fabric. A patterned fabric can add visual interest to a room, while a solid fabric can provide a more cohesive look.

Following these tips, you can choose a pillow design and fabric that suits your style and needs.

Preparing and Cutting the Fabric

Before you start sewing the pillow, you need to prepare the fabric. Start by washing and ironing it to remove any wrinkles or sizing. This ensures that the fabric will not shrink or distort after sewing.
Next, you need to measure and cut the fabric pieces for the pillow. You can use a tape measure and fabric scissors for this task. If you make a standard square pillow, you will need two equal-sized fabric squares. Add up a 1/2 inch seam allowance to the measurements when cutting the fabric.

Step Instruction
1 Lay the fabric flat on a cutting mat or table.
2 Measure and mark the fabric according to the desired dimensions.
3 Cut the fabric along the marked lines using fabric scissors.
4 Repeat steps 1-3 with the other piece of fabric.

Ensure the two fabric pieces are the same size and shape before moving on to the next step. You can use pins to fasten the fabric pieces together, but be careful not to distort or stretch the fabric while sewing.

Sewing the Pillow Seams

Once the fabric pieces are cut to size, it’s time to start sewing the pillow seams. You can use several different seam techniques, depending on your preference and sewing experience.

Straight stitching by hand

If you are new to sewing, stitching by hand is a simple and effective way to combine the fabric pieces. Pin the selections together, aligning the edges, and use a needle and thread to sew straight line along with the edge of the fabric, about 1/4 inch from the edge. Repeat on all sides, leaving a small opening for stuffing.

Sewing machine stitching

If you have a sewing machine, you can use it to sew the pillow seams for a faster and more efficient process. put the fabric pieces right sides together and pin along the edges, leaving a small opening for stuffing. Use a straight stitch to sew around the edges, about 1/2 inch from the edge. Remember to backstitch at the beginning and end to secure the stitches.

If you want to add a decorative edge seam, use a zigzag or decorative stitch on your sewing machine. Fold the borders of the fabric under and sew along the border with your chosen stitch.

Securing the stitches

It’s essential to secure the stitches once you finish sewing to prevent the seams from unraveling. Tie a knot at the end of the seam if you sewed by hand, or backstitch a few times if you used a sewing machine. Trim any excess threads and turn the pillowcase right through the small opening.

Adding Decorative Elements

Adding decorative elements to your pillow can take it to the next level and make it truly unique. Here are some ideas and instructions to help get you started:

Adding Piping

Piping is a decorative trim that can be added to the edges of a pillow for a more finished look. To add piping, cut a strip of fabric on the bias (diagonal) to the desired length of your pillow perimeter, plus a few extra inches. Fold the strip in half lengthwise and insert a piping cord into the fold. Pin the piping cord along the edge of one pillow piece, with the folded edge facing inside. Sew the piping to the pillow piece using a zipper foot, then add the other pillow piece and sew the edges together, again using a zipper foot.

Adding Ruffles

Ruffles can add a feminine and whimsical touch to your pillow design. To make ruffles:

  1. Cut a strip of fabric to a certain length and several inches wide.
  2. Sew a basting stitch along one long edge of the fabric strip, then gather the fabric by pulling the threads.
  3. Pin the gathered fabric to the edge of one pillow piece, then sew it in place using a regular foot.
  4. Add the other pillow piece and sew the edges together using a normal foot.


Embroidery is a classic method that can add visual interest and texture to your pillow design. There are many embroidery stitches, including backstitch, satin stitch, and French knot. Use embroidery floss in different colors to create intricate designs on your pillow fabric. For a personalized touch, you can also use embroidery to add words or phrases to pillow.

Fabric Appliqué

Fabric appliqué is applying a cut-out fabric design onto another piece of fabric. To create an appliqué, cut out your desired shape from a selection of fabric. Pin the shape onto your pillow fabric and sew it in place using a small stitch. You can add multiple appliqués to your pillow for a unique and eclectic look.

Choose the decorative elements that best fit your style and make your pillow unique.

Stuffing and Closing the Pillow

Once the sewing is complete, it is time to stuff the pillow. There are several options for sealing materials, including polyester fiberfill, feathers, or foam. Start by filling the corners of the pillow first, ensuring an even distribution of stuffing. Stop periodically to test the pillow’s firmness and make any necessary adjustments.

Once the pillow is fully stuffed, it is time to close the opening. There are several options for completing the pillow, depending on the desired look and level of security. Hand-sew the opening using a whip stitch or ladder stitch for simple and secure closure. Alternatively, consider using an invisible zipper for a sleek finish.

When closing the pillow, it is essential to ensure the stitches are tight and secure to prevent any stuffing from escaping. Once the opening is fully closed, give the pillow a final fluff and adjust the filling as necessary.

Finishing Touches and Care Instructions

Now that your pillow is complete add some finishing touches to make it truly unique. Trimming any excess fabric is a simple way to achieve a clean and polished look. Adding buttons or other embellishments can also spruce the design and express your style.

It’s essential to take care of your handmade pillow to ensure it lasts as long as possible. To clean, spot treat any stains with mild detergent and water. Avoid toxic chemicals or bleach, which can damage the fabric and stitching. If machine washing is necessary, use a mild cycle with cold water and mild detergent. Air drying is recommended to intercept shrinkage or distortion of the pillow shape.

Personalizing Your Pillow

Once you have mastered the basics of pillow sewing, it’s time to get creative and add some personal touches to your design. These techniques can help transform your pillow into a unique and special accent for your home:

  • Appliqué: Add shapes from different fabrics to your pillow, such as flowers, animals, or letters. Cut out the shapes from your chosen fabric and sew them onto the pillow using a straight stitch.
  • Fabric paint: Use fabric paint to add a design or pattern to your pillow. You can use freehand painting to make your unique design.
  • Fabric dyeing: Use fabric dye to transform the color of your pillow fabric. You can use a dip-dye technique or tie-dye for a more intricate design.

Always test your techniques on a small piece of fabric before applying them to your pillow. This will help you avoid any mistakes or unexpected results. Have fun and get creative to make your pillow genuinely one-of-a-kind!


Learning how to sew a pillow can be a fun and rewarding experience for beginners. Following this step-by-step instructions, you can create your personalized home decor quickly. Gather all the necessary supplies and select the right design and fabric for your pillow. Take time to prepare and cut the fabric, sew the seams straight, and add decorative elements to make your pillow unique. Finally, stuff and close the pillow securely, and add any finishing touches to complete the look. With practice and creativity, the possibilities for custom pillows are endless.


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