15-Minute Pillowcase {with French Seams} ~ Tutorial

Today I have a great 15 Minute Pillowcase with French Seams tutorial for you!

As most of you know, I love lined garments.  Why?  Because I like things to look as beautiful on the inside as they do on the out.  However, sometimes lining projects is not necessary or practical and that’s where french seams come in.  A french seam encases the raw edge of the fabric so you have a beautiful, neat and tidy, finished look. And that’s where the 15 Minute Pillowcase with French Seams comes in……..

No joke, these pillowcases will not take you more than 15-minutes and they will be gorgeous!  I have seen a lot of pillowcase tutorials, but when my mom told me about this unique technique that she learned from her quilting group, I knew I had to share.

Consider making a pair of these as a gift or perhaps make some in seasonal fabrics to pull out throughout the year.  I don’t sew much for myself, let alone my husband, so this set of pillowcases is staying right on our bed.  A little gift for us.

So, do you want to make the quickest, most beautiful pillowcase ever?  Here we go……
15-Minute Pillowcase Tutorial
{with French Seams}
Materials (1 Standard Size Pillowcase):
Three different printed fabrics –
Fabric 1: 27″(main fabric) x width of fabric (approx. 43″)
Fabric 2: 2.5″(thin accent) x width of fabric (approx. 43″)
Fabric 3: 12″(large side band) x width of fabric (approx. 43″)
Basic Sewing Supplies
Here are the directions that were sent to me by my mom from her quilting group.
Click HERE to view.
Here is what a french seam looks like (pictured above).  Isn’t it pretty?  No raw, exposed edges.  You can use french seams when sewing garments as well.  It’s a great finishing option if you don’t have a serger.
How about making a set of these for overnight guests?  I think that would be a lovely gesture and then they can go home with them as kind of a ‘thank you for coming’ sort of gift.
I’ve got plans to make several sets of these pillowcases.  I have all this beautiful fabric, so why not rest my head on it when I go to sleep?  I must be a true fabric addict.  Hi, my name is Lindsay and I want to sleep with my fabric.  Haha, just kidding…….well, not really.
15 Minute Pillowcase with French Seams. Free Pattern and Tutorial from The Cottage Mama. www.thecottagemama.com

Cottage Mama’s Note:  
Fabrics seen here are as follows ~
Fabric 1 (Light Blue Main): Art Gallery Fabric – Alhambra II – Moorish Blooms Aqua
Fabric 2 (Yellow Thin Band): Timeless Treasures – Sweet on NYC – Pixie Yellow
Fabric 3 (Dark Blue Side Band): Art Gallery FabricAlhambra II- Cashmere Cameo Night

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  1. So lovely! I’m sure you have amazing dreams with this cute fabric. I’ve been also thinking of doing some pillow cases. Will make sure to follow your tutorial.

    • I want to know what fabrics you all use. I look and put it up to my face and even after preshrinking , the fabric feels scratchy. I want the feel of Egyptian Cotton.. or similar.. Just nice and soft.

  2. Well this is timely. I am making pillowcases for my daughters for Christmas and I am familiar with french seams so now I don’t have to think at all!

  3. thanks for the tutorial, those pillows look lovely xxx

  4. This is amaaazing! Leave it to a quilting group to make it easy for us all – they’re the experts! 🙂 Wondering how to figure the cut measurements for King pillowcases – thoughts anyone?

    • darwat51 says

      Pillows come in so many different varieties now, the best way to get a good fit is to take your tape measure and measure the length and add at least 8 inches so you can have a 4 inch hem, then measure around the pillow and add at least 6 inches. This will give you enough space for a 3/4 inch seam and space for pillow. If you want tighter cases, just adjust the side seam.

  5. Ooh, so pretty, thanks for sharing :o)

  6. I love your fabric choices. I’ve seen this method before but haven’t tried it. Maybe I’ll try it on some Christmas themed pillow cases.

  7. I love this method of making a pillow case but this is the first time I’ve seen the added accent color band. LOVE IT! I am actually making Christmas pillow cases for my grandkids this weekend using this method, and now I am going to find fabric to add the band of accent color! Thanks for the inspiration and the great directions!

  8. I do love your fabric!! So Pretty!!

    Did I tell you that I made your Pecan Bread Pudding recipe for Thanksgiving? It was the hit of the desserts!! Thank you for passing that along!!

  9. Hi Lindsay,
    Thank you for this tutorial.
    I love bedding and especially pillow cases.
    But the weirdest thing is… I can make the coolest girly garments, but when it comes to a nice pillowcase I make mistakes and I have to think and think.
    So I am going to check out your tutorial and maybe indeed this one will be great for me.
    Thank your Mom!

    P.s. I do sleep with my fabric (sometimes it is just stuck to me – little scraps and threads and such). (lol)

  10. I was making pillowcases for Christmas using another tutorial I found. I had already made 3, used your tut on the last 2. It was so much faster! Thank you!

  11. I discovered these same instructions on another site and have been making pillowcases as gifts this year! The great thing about this is that it is a great stash buster! Fabrics that are a couple years old still appeal to many of my friends, so I have really made room on my shelves for new quilting fabric and I don’t feel like I spent alot of money because it was so long ago it spent it! The other thing about pillowcases is that it is a satisfying project for a young girl learning to sew — my neice felt so accomplished when her new pillowcase was done!

  12. I love these! So pretty! A perfect quick sewing project that I WILL be doing as soon as the utter craziness of this month starts to die down! : )

  13. Genius. Pure genius.

  14. By far the easiest tutorial for this beginner to follow. I made two pillowcases tonight as Xmas gifts. They’re for my nephews and are made out of pieces of their Grandpa’s old shirts. I am so impressed with how they look! Thank you!!!

  15. That fabric looks very pretty! Indeed, you can make something nice for your home or as a gift to someone, thanks to the helpful tutorial you made.

  16. Hi, name name is Kristie and I want to sleep with my fabric too. 🙂

  17. Anonymous says

    Here is a silly question… I understnd french seams but do you not see the french seam at the top of the pillow case. I have even top stitched it down but is still bulky at the top? Any suggestions or am I doing it wrong?

  18. Thank you!

  19. The Quilting Lady says

    For years I have made matching pillowcases for all the quilts I make. If the quilt is a lap throw or twin size, it gets one pillowcase. If regular, queen or king, they get a pair of pillowcases. And all the kids, grandkids & neices love pillowcases for every holiday there is! Lots of times with their names appliqued on the hem. When my grand-daughter turned two, her parents tried giving her a pillow to sleep on but it was too large for her. I bought a travel size pillow & removed part of the stuffing so it was flater. And I made a very small pillow for her baby doll. Now when I make a pillowcase for her, her doll gets a matching pillowcase & doll quilt. She loves them. The pillowcase for the doll also has the french seams. The only difference is that I use ribbon or ric-rack in place of the 2 1/2″ strip.

  20. We do this type of pillow case in New Mexico and it’s called the Burrito method here. It’s a fun and easy way to get rid of your scraps to make for family members and others. I buy scraps from the quilt stores and put them all into a container and when it gets full, I have lots of fun making tons of pillowcases.

  21. I just finished making one of these and it turned out beautiful! I even made it just slightly smaller because I didn’t have enough fabric, and it still turned out OK. I love the clean finish on every seam! Thank you for a great tutorial!

  22. Brilliant …. I had a go once before trying to do french seams on a pillow case but hadn’t worked out how to do the band so neatly …. thankyou so much for sharing! Inspirational!

  23. This is the smartest thing ever! I just made two pillowcases, one using this method and the other using a different method, and yours was so much quicker and easier. Love it. Now I want to make 50 more!

  24. Gorgeous fabrics!

  25. This is amazing… I really like the patterns and my wife and i are moving to our new condo in pasig city Philippines, and we have to furnish our condo and I’m sure she’ll find this as a huge help !! thank you 😀

  26. I hope you don’t mind I have shared you link on my face book page and with your permission on my blog.

  27. This tutorial is the easiest to follow of all the ones I have tried. I have used it several times and just keep coming back.

    This time I made a classic car pillowcase for my son for Christmas. You can see it here.


    I gave you credit and gave a link back to your site.

  28. janel barthe says

    love this tutorial, but not computer savvy enough to down instructions. can you help/

  29. thank you for sharing. Just what I needed.

  30. Those pillowcases look so classy. I really love that fabric!

  31. Cannot get the hyperlink to work for the french seams. Help please.

  32. I have made these before and they so pretty. People love them as gifts. Thanks for sharing the pattern. I always have to refresh my mind how to make them again.

  33. Thanks again for another wonderful tutorial!!! You are the best!!

  34. I cant seem to get the instructions or tutorial

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  38. SharinMyPinion says

    Hi. I’m so glad I found this as I decided to make pillow cases for the children on my niece and nephew for Christmas this year. I’ve finished 3 and have 3 to go. They look terrific!

    Two things I discovered that I’d like to share. 1.) A couple of the fabrics I purchased measured closer to 41″ wide after washing, including the selvedge. On one of them the selvedge was more than 1/2″ wide and white against a colored background. Something to consider when looking for fabric. Grrr. 2.) Considering buying an extra 1/8 yd. or 1/4 yd. of ea. fabric, also for shrinkage.

  39. Hi Lindsay

    I love the idea of gifting these pillowcases to house guests after they stay.

    What a great idea!!

    I’ve popped this wonderful tutorial in our recent craft inspiration roundup on Crafty Like Granny. Happy sewing 🙂

    Yours in craftiness Emily 🙂


  1. […] Sometimes lining projects is not necessary or practical and that’s where french seams come in. A french seam encases the raw edge of the fabric so you have a beautiful, neat and tidy, finished look. Get the free sewing tutorial here […]

  2. […] Pillowcase tutorial with french seams by The Cottage Mama […]

  3. […] here via […]

  4. […] LOVE these beautiful pillowcases which can be made in only 15 minutes! The best part of this free pattern/tutorial from Cottage Mama is that it includes French seams – which gives the pillowcase a lovely professional finish! […]

  5. […] well done, and I think you’ll find the results a little more professional than most. This pillowcase tutorial will inspire you to spruce up your […]

  6. […] This tutorial is a great sewing beginners idea. I loved the Lindsay at Cottage Mama’s idea about making a pair to gift to house guests after they stay with you. Take a look at this easy to follow sew a pillow case tutorial. […]