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    June 17, 2024 6 min read

    Want to add a personal touch to your bedroom? Learning how to make a pillow sham is the perfect way to do it!

    Pillow shams are decorative covers that can match your bedding or add color and pattern to your room, making them a simple, budget-friendly DIY project that takes just a few hours with basic sewing skills and materials to create beautiful shams, including body pillow shams, that fit your pillows perfectly with your favorite fabrics.

    In this guide, we’ll show you step-by-step how to make your pillow shams. From choosing the right fabric to adding decorative details, we’ll cover everything you need. Whether you're a seasoned sewer or a DIY newbie, you'll be able to make pillow shams that enhance your bedroom decor.

    Let's get started!


    Crafting Best Pillow Shams


    How to Make a Pillow Sham

    Essential Materials

    Before you begin making your pillow sham, it is important to gather all the essential materials. Here are some of the materials you'll need:

    • Fabric: Choose a fabric that complements your bedding or decor. You can use cotton, linen, or any other lightweight fabric.
    • Pillow sham pattern: You can either use a commercial pattern or create your own using measurements.
    • Sewing machine: A sewing machine will make the process faster and easier.
    • Thread: Choose a thread that matches the color of your fabric.
    • Sewing supplies: You'll need pins, scissors, a ruler, and an iron to press your seams.

    Understanding the Pattern

    The first step in making a pillow sham is to understand the pattern.

    If you're using a commercial pattern, make sure to read the instructions carefully. If you're creating your own pattern, you'll need to measure your pillow and add seam allowances.


    When cutting your fabric, make sure to follow the pattern instructions carefully.

    Pay attention to the grainline and direction of the fabric. It's also important to cut your pieces accurately to ensure that they fit together properly.


    Sewing Your Pillow Sham

    When sewing your pillow sham, use a seam allowance of ½ inch or as specified in your pattern.

    Sew the pieces together in the order specified in the instructions. Press your seams open or to one side as directed.

    For a luxurious touch, consider using linen pillow shams. Linen not only adds elegance but also offers durability and breathability, making it a perfect choice for bedding accessories.


    Sewing Process for Custom Pillow Shams

    How to Make a Pillow Sham

    Preparing Your Fabric

    Before you start sewing, make sure that your fabric is clean and ironed.

    Ironing helps to remove any creases or wrinkles that may affect the finished product.

    To begin, lay your fabric on a flat surface and fold it in half with the right sides together. Pin the fabric together along the edges to keep it in place while you cut.


    Assembling the Pieces

    Next, cut out your front and back pieces according to the measurements you have decided on.

    Once you have your pieces cut out, it's time to start sewing.

    Begin by placing the front piece on top of the back pieces with the right sides together. Pin along the edges to hold the pieces in place.


    Adding the Finishing Touches

    Now it's time to hem your pillow sham.

    Fold the raw edges of the fabric under and pin them in place. Then, top-stitch around the edges of the sham to secure the hem.


    You can also add a flange to give your pillow sham a more finished look.

    To do this, fold the fabric over on itself and sew along the edge.


    After you have finished sewing your pillow sham, press it with an iron to remove any wrinkles and make the seams look neat.

    Remember to pivot at the corners to ensure that they are crisp and well-defined. Once you have finished pressing, your pillow sham is ready to use.


    Customizing Your Pillow Shams


    How to Make a Pillow Sham

    Choosing the Right Fabrics

    When it comes to customizing your pillow sham, choosing the right fabric is crucial.

    You want to select a fabric that complements the decor of your room while also being functional.


    If you have basic sewing skills, you can use a variety of fabrics to create a patchwork design.

    Upholstery fabric is a great choice if you want a durable and long-lasting pillow sham.


    Linen is a popular choice for a refreshing, summery look, while velvet and canvas add a touch of luxury and elegance to your master bedroom. Add a soft linen pillowcase for a comfortable and stylish touch.

    Home decor fabric is another option for customizing your pillow sham.


    These fabrics come in a range of colors and patterns, allowing you to create a unique and personalized design.

    When selecting your fabric, consider the size of your pillows and the amount of fabric you will need to cover them.


    Decorative Elements

    Adding decorative elements to your pillow sham is a great way to make it stand out.

    Flanges are a popular choice for adding a decorative touch to your pillow sham.


    You can use larger flanges for a bolder look or smaller ones for a more subtle effect.

    Borders are another option for customizing your pillow sham.


    You can add a border to one or both sides of your pillow sham to create a frame around your design.

    Quilting is also a popular technique for adding texture and visual interest to your pillow sham.


    You can use batting to create a quilted effect or simply stitch lines across the fabric to create a subtle pattern.


    Final Steps and Care for Pillow Shams

    How to Make a Pillow Sham

    Creating a Clean Back Closure

    Once you have finished sewing the front and back panels together, it's time to create a clean closure for your pillow sham.

    One of the most popular methods is the envelope back closure, which involves overlapping the back panels to create a pocket for the pillow insert.


    To do this, you will need to fold over the edges of the back panels and sew them in place using a basting stitch.

    Make sure to use a tape measure to ensure that the pocket is the right size for your pillow insert.


    Another option is to use a zipper closure, which will give your pillow sham a more professional and polished look.

    To do this, you will need to sew a zipper onto the back panels before sewing the front and back panels together.


    Make sure to use a fusible fleece to reinforce the fabric around the zipper and prevent it from tearing.


    Maintenance and Care Tips

    To ensure that your pillow sham lasts as long as possible, it's important to take proper care of it. Here are a few maintenance and care tips to keep in mind:

    • Wash your pillow sham regularly to keep it clean and fresh. Make sure to follow the care instructions on the label to avoid damaging the fabric.
    • If you have multiple pillow shams, consider rotating them regularly to prevent wear and tear.
    • If you love your pillow sham and want to keep it looking like new, consider investing in a pillow form to help maintain its shape over time.
    • If you're on a budget, consider using throw pillows instead of expensive pillow inserts. They can be just as comfortable and stylish, and can be easily replaced if they become worn or damaged.
    • If you're short on time, consider using an envelope backing instead of a zipper closure. It's quick and easy to sew, and can be easily removed for washing.



    Making your own pillow shams is a fantastic way to personalize your bedroom decor. This easy and budget-friendly DIY project lets you choose fabrics and decorative details that suit your style. Whether you're new to sewing or not, you can create custom pillow shams that fit perfectly and enhance your bedroom's coziness. Follow the steps outlined here, and in just a few hours, you'll have unique pillow shams that reflect your taste and style.

    Explore our high-quality pillow sham and bedding collection to find the perfect fit. Make your bedroom uniquely yours with custom-made pillow shams!


    Frequently Asked Questions

    How to Make a Pillow Sham


    Can I sew pillow shams by hand instead of using a sewing machine?

    Yes, you can sew pillow shams by hand if you don't have access to a sewing machine. Hand-sewing allows for more control and precision, though it may take longer than using a machine. Additionally, using clips instead of pins can be an alternative for holding fabric together while sewing, reducing the risk of pricking yourself and allowing for easier manipulation of the fabric.


    Can I rotate my pillow shams to prevent wear and tear?

    Rotating your pillow shams periodically can help prevent uneven wear and tear, ensuring they maintain their appearance for longer. Unlike pillowcases, which are used for sleeping, pillow shams primarily serve as decorative covers for pillows.


    What is the standard size for a pillow sham and how much fabric is required?

    The standard size for a pillow sham is typically 20 inches by 26 inches for a standard pillow and 20 inches by 36 inches for a king size pillow.

    To determine how much fabric you will need, add 2 inches to the width and length of the pillow insert and then multiply by two to account for the front and back pieces.


    How do I make a pillow sham without a flange for a cleaner look?

    To create a pillow sham without a flange, simply cut two pieces of fabric to the desired size and sew them together, leaving a small opening to turn the sham right side out. Once the sham is turned, stitch the opening closed.

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