Monday, June 22, 2015

A Pair of One-Hour, No Pattern Pillowcases

...because when you can't find what you want in a retail store or online (aside from bolts of fabulous fabric), you've gotta make them! 

In this instance, the project was superhero pillowcases. Oh, there are superhero pillowcases out there - lots! But, like in the case of Walmart, whose pillow cases were $20 a set and constructed from 100% polyester, the cost and materials weren't jiving with my thrifty sense or preference for natural fabrics.  

My Supplies:

-2 yards of 44" wide, 100% cotton superhero themed fabric ($9.99 a yard; I had a 60% off coupon = $7.99 for both yards before sales tax).
-1-6 yards spool of 3/8" wide blue grosgrain ribbon ($1.99)
-Gutterman blue cotton thread ($3.79)

1). I made two queen size pillowcases (20"x 30") with 4" ribboned cuffs. I cut each case at 31" and each cuff at 4-1/2" long. I did not cut for the width of the pillowcases, but I'll explain why in Step 6.

2). With the RIGHT SIDE of the cuff against the WRONG SIDE of the pillowcase (making sure that the salvages match), I sewed the two together at the top edge.

3). I measured out a length of ribbon about 1" longer than the width of the pillowcase from salvage to salvage (about 45") to sew along the top edge of the cuff on the RIGHT SIDE. Notice, I have the ribbon offset by 1/4" from the cuff's edge...

4). Then, I turned the ribboned edge under and gave the whole top of the pillowcase a good pressing...

5). Next, I turned the pressed cuff over to the RIGHT SIDE of the pillowcase, pressed the top seam, then stitched the cuff to the pillowcase (about 1/16" in from the cuff's edge)...

6) I folded the pillowcase together with RIGHT SIDES facing and sewed the side and bottom seams, taking care that the cuff and ribbon edging were lined up well. Because this particular novelty fabric had a 1" salvage, rather than cut for the width of the pillowcase (20"), I stitched the side seam at 1/2" from the salvage's inner edge, making a 1-1/2 seam, which I trimmed off when I serged the seam - I did this to skip the extra measuring and cutting at the beginning to save time. The pillowcase's dimensions finished out at 21"x 30" - extra room for an extra fluffy pillow!

7). Finally, I flipped the pillowcases right-side out and gave the lot a final pressing. Viola! 

Super cool! And what's more is that they are constructed from a fine thread count, 100% cotton fabric rather than 100% polyester or a poly-blend. Final cost: $14.77 after sales tax. WIN!

Blessings and happy sewing! 


  1. Total win! The ribbon really makes it pop. I have an Avengers sheet set in our guest room, but it only came with the one pillow case. This would be a brilliant way for me to add to the set. I never thought of using the novelty cotton prints for pillow cases. I was afraid it would be coarse against the face when sleeping. Perhaps a couple of good washing is all they'll need, though.

    1. I had the same concern as you about the novelty fabric, but I was surprised by how much they varied in texture, quality, and content!