Around the House, Free Patterns

Pillow Sham Tutorial

Last week I posted about my pillow shams that I sewed out of absolutely amazing Amy Butler fabrics. I’m totally in love with them. As with most of my obsessions, I have the overwhelming urge to share it with everyone! So (sew), it’s tutorial time!

Now this is my first sewing pattern tutorial, and it’ll probably show. This is sort of geared towards newbie sewers (such as myself).

First of all, these are the dimensions of the finished pillow:

Pillow Shams1

I made four panels on the front and two panels make up the back of the pillow, which includes a flap. I used four different fabrics (‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’ and ‘D’). There’s a 1 inch border around the outside of the pillow, just for a little panache. (Also because we have little pillows on a queen size bed, so we need the extra coverage!)

To start with, choose four lovely fabrics. Cut out the four front panels in the measurements shown below. Sew the panels together along the longest side, with a 1/4″ seam tolerance.

Pillow Shams2

Now onto the back. Using ‘B’ and ‘C’ fabrics, cut out two rectangles in the followsing dimensions. Hem the edges indicated so that you use up 1″ of fabric.

Pillow Shams3

At this point, you get to sew the front and back panels together. Lay the ‘Front’ on a flat surface, right side up. Take back panel ‘C’ (the smaller one) and lay it right side down on the ‘Front’. Line it up with one of the shorter edges on the ‘Front’. Pin it in place. Take back panel ‘B’ (the bigger one) and line it up with the other shorter edge on the ‘Front’, right side down. Make sure that the overlapping part of back panel ‘B’ is on top of panel ‘C’ (this will make the flap). Pin ‘B’ in place. Oh, and make sure that the hemmed edges of back panels ‘B’ and ‘C’ are in the middle of the pillow.

I allowed for 1/2″ seam tolerance for sewing the back and front together. (Aside: my cutting skills are incredibly sub-par and I very quickly discovered that if you made a boo-boo in measuring the panels, this is where sewing gets dicey. I found that 1/2″ seam tolerance helped smear over any inconsistencies in the sizes.)

Pillow Shams4

Once you’ve sewn the front and back together, turn it right side out. Poke the corners out so that they are nice and pointy, and press everything. Now with right sides out, sew a 1″ border around the pillow.

All done! Now you’ve got your own pillow shams!

Pillow Close up Front

Pillow Close up Back

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