How to Sew a Pillow Cover with a Border TUTORIAL

Well, Happy Monday! I thought we’d start this week off with a great little pillow cover tutorial. This pillow cover is super easy to sew {its perfect for beginners!} and has a simple border detail. {my friend Cara sews hers like this, and I thought it was pretty cool!} I recently sewed a bunch of these envelope pillows for my front sitting room.

how to sew a pillow cover

 Trust me, these cute envelope pillow covers are a cinch to sew! They come together in a matter of minutes.

pillow cover with a borderHow to Make a Pillow Cover

supplies: about 1 yard of fabric per pillow, scissors, thread, sewing machine, rotary cutter {optional}

To determine the size of your pillow pieces:

Front: measure your pillow and add 2″ on both sides. For ex: my pillows pictured at 15″ pillows. So I will cut my front piece to be 17″ x 17″. This will also be the length of the 2 back pieces.

Back Pieces: subtract 3″ from the measurement of your pillow. Ex: my pillows are 15″ – 3″ = 12″. {for pillow larger than 18″, subtract 5″ instead of 3″} This will be the width of the 2 skinnier back pieces.

free pillow pattern

  1. Cut 2 pieces for the Back of your pillow leaving the selvage on along the length on both pieces. {this will save you from needing to finish or hem them} Ex: Mine measured 12″ x 17″ {see calculations above}
  2. Lay one Back piece over the front piece with selvage side towards the top as shown.
  3. Lay the second back piece on top of the 2 previous pieces overlapping the other Back piece by a few inches and putting the selvage side towards the bottom.               
    what is selvage
    Use the selvage on the back of the cover cuts out an extra step!
  4. envelope pillow coverPin your pieces together ans sew a 1/2″ seam around all 4 sides.
  5. Trim your corners. {be careful not to cut the thread!}
  6. Turn the pillow cover inside a pillow cover
  7. Sew a 1/2″ top stitch around all 4 sides of the pillow cover.
  8. This is the front of your envelope pillow cover. Notice the top stitch you did in Step 7 gives a small border detail.
  9. No fuss border! Simple and easy, but adds a some character to your simple pillow cover!

DIY Pillow Covers

sew a pillow coverThis is my new favorite way to sew pillow covers. Fast, easy, and looks great! Check out how they look in my Front Room makeover! oh you’ll probably see that cute lime green flower in there too. ha!

happy crafting!


How do you like to sew your pillow covers?

psssst. have you signed up yet?handmade gift exchange

Hi! I'm Linda, the craft addict behind Craftaholics Anonymous®, a craft blog. Crafting is cheaper than therapy, right? When I'm not DIYing something, I can be found taxiing around our 4 crazy kids or working out. Or shoe shopping... because you can never have too many shoes! Happy crafting! ♥

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  1. 2

    Thanks for the tutorial, very cute with the border. Have a wonderful Day!

  2. 3

    It was only this past year of sewing that I realized what a huge difference adding piping, or a stitched border like you have, makes. It creates pillows that look so much nicer and “finished”. Great tutorial, I’ll definitely be linking :)

    1. 3.1

      Thank you, Kristin! Small details make a huge difference. I’m so glad you stopped by!
      happy crafting,

  3. 4

    Oh how EASY!! I have made pillow covers before and it had no border. I MUST try these….BTW, I LOVE LOVE LOVE the color of your pillow covers!! So bright and happy. I hope to find a lime green like that! :)


  4. 5
    Sue Richins

    So clever and with a pretty color! I need to get more daring with color!

  5. 6

    These are fantastic! I’ve been thinking of making some pillows and this would be great for me since I’m not really a sewer!! Thanks and I can’t wait for the gift exchange!!

    1. 6.1

      Thanks, Veronnica! These pillow are super easy and the border detail adds a special touch! I’m so glad you signed up for the gift exchange. Its going to be so fun!
      happy crafting,

  6. 7

    Can’t wait to try this! I’ve sewn an envelope pillow before but never with the border. Usually I make pillows with zippers along the bottom. Thanks for the post!

  7. 8

    I’m SO glad I came across this tutorial. I just moved into a new house and got a new couch that came with pillows, but I wasn’t a fan of the print. I just made covers using your tutorial and LOVE them. What a difference! Thank you so much for this easy and great tutorial!

  8. 9

    This looks easy and nice. I’m new in sewing, and I definitely wanna try this! Thanks for the tutorial <3