Thursday, January 4, 2024

DIY Ruffle Pillow Cover

Hey friends! It’s been a sewing kind of weekend for me over here! After cleaning up the holiday decorations, I was moving our chair back into our dining room and the little pillow that lives in the chair has seen better days, so I decided to make a pillow cover for it.

I have a bunch of fabric leftover from my DIY RV Curtains and it matches my chair good, so I used that.

I measured my pillows height and width and cut the fabric out 1” bigger for the front of the pillow cover. My pillow is 16”x10” and I cut the fabric 17”x11”.

I decided on a flap style pillow cover that opens in the back instead of doing a zipper on the bottom. For the back of the pillow cover, I cut a piece of fabric 1” taller than my pillow and 5” wider than my pillow, so 22”x11”, then I cut that piece in half making two 11”x11” pieces.

I finished one edge on each of the pieces for the back cover by folding over about a 1/4” and sewing a straight line along the fold, so that the exposed pieces would look nice.

I decided I wanted ruffles on the edges of my pillow cover, so I cut some 3” strips to make the ruffles. I added up the perimeter of my previous cuts and multiplied that by 1.5 to tell me how long my ruffles need to be, so 17”+17”+11”+11”=56, then I need to account for the extra space the ruffles will bunch up the fabric, which is where 1.5 comes in. 56x1.5=84, so I need 84” of fabric for my ruffles. I didn’t have 84” of continuous fabric, so I cut 3 strips and sewed them together to make one continuous strip.

I used a simple straight stitch to mend the 3” strips together.

To create the ruffles, I set my sewing machine to the longest straight stitch it has and turned the tension as high as it would go. I folded the 3” strip in half lengthwise and sewed along the cut edges. I stopped 4 times along my 84” strip and cut the thread a few inches away from my fabric, so that I could pull the threads to create tighter ruffles.

The tension and the longer stitch in the sewing machine creates some natural ruffles, but they aren’t super consistent, so I pulled gently on the extra threads to create more ruffles. I recommend doing this part as you are sewing instead of waiting until the strip is all ruffled, so you don’t have to search for the threads like I had to.

As soon as the threads would not pull out any more, I tied them off and cut the tails.

Here is my strip of finished ruffles! I would also recommend sewing the ends together for a giant circle to prevent an overlap in the corner on the finished pillow. Either way, it will be cute, but little imperfections like this are worth noting.

To assemble the pillow cover, I laid down the front piece of the pillow cover face up, then the ruffles with the seam facing out.

I added some pins in the corners to keep the ruffles loosely in place.

I attached the ruffles to the front piece of the pillow cover with a straight stitch and my normal tension setting. I just made sure to keep smoothing out the ruffles and watching that they were in the right spot as a went.

When I had the ruffles attached, I went through and checked the seam for any loose spots like this one. I just marked the spot with my finger, and went back and added another line to that that area with my sewing machine to fix it.

After inspecting the front piece and making sure all the ruffles were attached nicely, I folded the ruffles forward again like the picture below.

This is the front side of the pillow cover and we are building it inside out, so next I laid the back pieces on top.

I added the back pieces of the pillow cover face down and loosely pinned them in place.

Them I changed my sewing machine to a zig-zag stitch and sewed around the perimeter of the pillow cover. I did keep checking the ruffles to make sure they were smoothed out.

After the final sewing, I just flipped the pillow cover right side out and added my pillow. This is it's primary use!

I also made a bigger one for my daughter's bed. So cute!

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