How to Sew a Pillowcase with Sewing Machine

Sewing clothes seems like a challenge as it needs skills and expertise. If you are new to sewing and want to make it your profession to earn money or just want to pursue it as a hobby, it can be the perfect start. To learn this money making skill, you just need a sewing machine and the right fabric. Also, because people are heftily packed in their day to day lives, it becomes important for them to seek help to fulfil their sewing needs. As today we are going to talk about how to sew pillowcases, you cannot get much simpler than that.

Pillowcases are easy to create and also they spruce up the look of your bedrooms. Since they don’t have any zig-zag patterns or styles, being a beginner you can pull it off really well. So jumping straight in the tutorial, you will be getting to know the basic approach to create a pillowcase with utmost ease. As the process is pretty simple, you will learn it perfectly and be able to design intricate designs as well.

Things needed

  • A sewing machine with the basic tools
  • The right fabric
  • A pair of scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • 2,3 different colored threads
  • Pins

Choose the fabric

Sew a Pillowcase

Because the pillows are taken under head, the cases must be made from a breathable and comfortable fabric. The material that feels relaxing like soft cotton, satin or flannel etc. are typically the most used so make your pick accordingly. To choose the right fabric that also complements your room decor, take a look at the interiors. Plus, make sure the pillowcases match with the bedsheet and the color scheme of the room. 2 yards of cloth material is required to make a standard set of covers. For what purpose do you want to sew the cases? If they are for sleeping, go for a washable and light fabric whereas pick a sturdy material if the pillow cases are for decoration purpose.

Crop the fabric

Take out the scissors and cut out the fabric in a standard size i.e. 45inches by 36inches. A very important thing to consider is the type of fabric you are using. For simple plain fabrics, cutting style doesn’t matter but if it has flowers or stripes, take care while cutting it.

Fold the fabric

Now fold the fabric in half length wise taking the finished sides or right sides together. The wrong or unfinished sides should face out.

Stitch the long and short side

Stitch the long and short side

Now set your sewing machine with the thread, needle and bobbin securely in place. Make straight stitch up the long side of the fabric, turn it and stitch one of the short sides. Once done, turn the fabric right side out and use a matching thread to add a decent look. Or you can also use a contrasting thread to add some flair and elegance to the pillowcase.

If in case, you don’t want to use a sewing machine for these straight stitches, use your hands and a threaded needle to make the stitches. Ensure that the stitches look perfectly straight to maintain consistency.

Do the hemming on open side

Now fold the fabric back to create hem and using an iron, create a crease to secure the base. Once again fold the fabric to create 3 inch hem instead of ½ inch hem done previously. Iron the fabric again and stitch the base of the hem with your sewing machine.

Doll up the pillowcase


Once you are done with stitching the pillowcase, it’s the time to add lace and ribbons to add a decorative flair. The finished pillowcase looks beautiful as you can use a colourful contrasting thread or ribbon over the hemline. Also, it hides the stitches and the case looks professionally stitched.

You can create decorative pillowcases as well using the same method. Here’s how:

Pick the fabric

Choose the fabric in contrasting colors to create a gorgeous pillowcase. One fabric is for main section, second one for the hem and third accent fabric. You can choose three different colors or different patterns, whichever you may like. If you like festive colors, go for vibrant patterns or if you are more into elegance, solid colors will make an excellent combination.

Cut the fabric

Use your scissors to cut three different pieces to the right size. Cut the main piece with the dimensions 26 inches by 44 inches, second piece to 12 inches by 44 inches and the last piece to 2 inches by 44 inches.

Iron the cloth

Iron the cloth

Ironing is essential to keep the fabric in proper shape while sewing. A non ironed fabric has wrinkles which distort the shape and the stitches look bad. Fold the trim in half lengthwise with wrong or unfinished sides together and iron it flat.

Lay the fabric

Now place the medium piece on the surface with right side up. With the edge of the medium fabric, line the trip fabric done in the last step and see if the folded edge is on the inside and the raw edges are outside. Next, lay out the large piece over medium and trim fabric with right side down. Check if all three layers of fabric i.e. long, medium and trim are aligned properly along the top edge. To keep them securely in place, pin them up with pins along the edges.

Roll the fabric

Now start rolling the largest piece of fabric which is on the top layer towards the pinned edge. Keep on rolling to within a few inches of the pinned edge and take the medium piece then. Fold the medium piece of fabric over the rolled piece and align it securely with the pinned edge. Take more pins to pin the layer large and trim layer.

Sew the edge

Sew the edge

With the sewing machine, make straight stitches along the pinned edges of the fabric and you will be able to create a rough draft. Make sure that the stitch is ½ inch from the edge of the fabric and remove all the pins while you stitch. Once you are done, check if the layers are sewed properly in neat and straight stitches. If you feel the stitches are not looking good and are zig-zagged, you can do it again. Remove the stitches with a ripper and start again by readjusting the fabric.

Turn the fabric

Now pull back the medium piece and see the large fabric roll underneath. Reverse the fabric by tugging on the roll and straighten it up on the surface. Iron it to make all the layers flat and non-wrinkled and also see that all stitches are perfectly done.

Stitch the edges

Now reverse the pillowcase to reveal the wrong sides facing out. Use the machine to stitch a straight seam around the remaining edges of the pillowcase. The part where hemming is done, leave that side open.

Turn the pillowcase

Lay the pillowcase right side out and iron it once more before you cover the pillow with it. Trim any extra hanging threads of the pillowcase and there you go with a finished product right in your hand.

Voila, we did it right.



I'm Jessica Flores, a professional fashion designer and an expert seamstress. Crafting has always been a deep-seated passion of mine, one that has flourished and evolved over the years. I've dedicated considerable time to both studying and practicing in the realm of fashion and sewing, amassing a wealth of experience and skills. It brings me great joy to share these insights and experiences with you all, hoping to inspire and foster a similar passion for the art of sewing.

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