How to Make a Pillow Case From a Placemat

I snagged this placemat from Hobby Lobby when it was 50% off and I instantly knew what I wanted to use it for…a pillow cover! Quite some time ago I thrifted a not-so-pretty pillow with the intent of covering it. It just so happened to fit in the placemat perfectly!

Keep In Mind

  • Make sure the placemat has two layers of fabric that will open up like a pillowcase.
  • If you don’t have/can’t find a pillow in the right size, fill with stuffing. I happened to have a pillow that was the perfect size for this placemat!
  • Make sure you have the correct side before ripping out the stitches…I thought the first side I chose would open the placemat up, but it didn’t. This was easy to fix, but it did cost me more time and sewing! (I’ll talk about ripping out stitches later on if you’re confused by what this means)

Tools You Will Need

  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors/Seam ripper
  • Pins
  • A placemat
  • Coordinating thread
  • Pillow insert/stuffing

How to Make a Pillow Case From a Placemat

Step 1. Rip Out Preexisting Stitches

You can use scissors if you do not own a seam ripper, but I highly recommend the seam ripper! It will make this step so much faster (especially if you mistakingly rip out the wrong seam like I did).

Before:

See all those lovely seams? We want to rip one side of those out. It’s ok though, we’ll clean it all up soon!

After:

This is what the side will look like after you successfully rip out the seam! See how the two pieces of fabric open up? Looks like it was made for a pillow!

Step 2. Insert the Pillow or Stuffing

Now it’s time to add the real ‘umph’ to this project…the pillow or stuffing!

To be honest, I had no clue if this pillow was going to fit until this moment right here. I bought the placemat without even knowing if I already had a pillow to fit it, but this is one instance when wingin’ it totally worked out.

NOTE: if you are filling your case with stuffing, I recommend using a wooden dowel rod or something that will allow you to really push that stuffing into all the nooks and crannies. This will just help you achieve the ‘plush and comfy’ pillow look.

Step 3. Pin the Open Side

You can do this without any pinning, but I found that taking the time to pin it in place was worth it. Otherwise I felt like I was wrestling to keep the case in place and sew it up at the same time!

Step 4. Sew

My sewing machine was set to an 8 since the preexisting seams were small and tight looking. I used white thread to match the thread that was already there.

Trim off any extra thread, and you’ve got yourself a brand new pillow case!


If you make this project and love how it turned out, feel free to come back and comment about your experience. I’d love to see your creation and how you used it!

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