How to Make an Easy No Sew Fleece Pillow Cover

Make a No-Sew Fleece Pillow Cover!

Would you like to make a super easy pillow sham, pillowcase, or dog bed cover? I adapted the instructions for How to Make an Easy No Sew Fleece Throw and created these instructions for a no-sew fleece pillow cover!

This project started because I wanted to make new covers for old dog beds. Although the foam inserts were still fine, the covers were in pretty rough shape. So I found some nice fleece remnants to make new dog bed covers.

Once I covered all four of the dog beds, I moved on to creating new pillow covers for some old pillows. We have some nice throw pillows for our living room, but they aren’t as comfy as a regular pillow.

I found some pretty fleece remnants that go well with our living room furniture. Using these, I created 2 different styles of pillow covers.

Here are instructions for making a pillow cover or pillow sham. The photos are from my dog bed project.

No sew pillow cover

Cutting Fleece to Size for a Pillow Cover

You’ll need two pieces of fleece fabric for this project, one for each side of your pillow. You may use the same print for each side or choose coordinating or contrasting color and designs.

Read ahead to the section on Pillow Cover vs Pillow Sham. You’ll need to decide which instructions to follow before you cut your fabric to size.

Measuring Your Fleece for a Pillow Cover

Measure the pillow and jot down the measurements. Add about 2 ” to these dimensions to allow for the depth of the pillow. Add more if your pillow is really thick.

You will need to allow enough fabric to cover your pillow and to create the ties for the edging. There are several different styles of tying or braiding your fabric with differing length ties… so choose your design before you cut the fabric.

Once you know how you will finish the edges of your pillow cover, you are ready to figure out the size to cut your fabric.

Example: For the knotted edge you will need to add 4 to 5″ to each side… for a total of 8 to 10″ in each dimension. If you need 24″ x 18″ for each piece of fabric to cover the pillow, you’ll need to add 8 to 10″ to each dimension. So the final size will be 32-34″ x 26-28′.

This is because you will be cutting strips of fabric along each edge of your fabric. Here are the different edges I have tried and the dimensions of the fabric strips they require…

Knotted Edges

Probably the easiest edging method is the knotted ties. You will need to cut your ties to approximately 3/4″ to 1″ wide and 4″ to 5″ long. I shared the instructions for tying your knotted edges in my post How to Make an Easy No Sew Fleece Throw.

No Tie Edge

This edging method requires an extra step when cutting your ties but looks very nice. You will need to cut your ties to 1″ wide by 4″ long. I’ve made several throws and a pillow with this edging method and you can read the instructions here.

Braided Edge

This is my favorite edging method for creating pillow covers. For the ‘braided’ edge you will need to cut your ties to 1″ wide by 2 – 2 1/2″ long. I hope to get my own instructions up for this method soon… but here is the blog where I found this!

No sew pillow cover
I added some extra padding by folding up an old mattress pad and stitching it to the dog bed. In this step I have inserted the cushion into the cover when 3 sides were knotted. Next I tied the 4th side to complete the cover.

No-Sew Pillow Cover vs Pillow Sham

Before you cut your fleece to size, decide if you wish to create a no-sew fleece pillow cover or a pillow sham that is easy to remove. I made pillow covers that can only be removed by untying the edging.

No-Sew Fleece Pillow Cover

For these instructions you will cut your fabric the same size for the front and back of the pillow. Here’s how to make your no-sew pillow cover…

  • Lay fabric for pillow back on a flat surface, with the right side facing down
  • Lay fabric for pillow front on top of the pillow back, with the right side facing up
  • Smooth out both layers, measure and mark your cuts
  • Cut top and bottom layers at the same time
  • Measure, mark, and cut out squares of fabric from each corner to match the length of the fabric strips you plan to cut out (ie: 2″ strips ~ cut a 2″ x 2″ square from each corner)
  • Lay a yardstick or place masking tape from corner to corner to guide your cuts to create fabric strips
  • Cut 3/4″ to 1″ fabric strips all around edges of the pillow cover
  • Tie or ‘braid’ 3 sides of the pillow
  • Insert the pillow into the cover
  • Continue tying or braiding fabric strips to finish edges of pillow
Simple Fleece Pillow Sham

If you would like to have the option of easily removing the fleece cover to wash, I suggest making a pillow sham. A pillow sham has two overlapping pieces of fabric for the backing that allow you to easily remove the sham.

To create a pillow sham, the fabric for the back will need to be longer to allow for stitching a straight seam along the edges as shown below. Plus you will overlap the 2 pieces of fabric by about 2″.

First, do not trim your top and bottom pieces of fabric yet!

Check to make sure that both pieces of fabric are large enough to allow for the size of the pillow, plus cutting the ties. The fabric for the back will also need to be about 4″ longer than the top.

Cut the fabric for the back of the pillow sham in half, from top to bottom as show below…

Turn the edges over and pin, so that the ‘wrong’ side of the fabric is folded in (you want to sew the hem so that the ‘right’ side of fabric is on the outside.

Then create a hem with a straight stitch along the 2 edges that will overlap for the ‘envelope’ in the back of the pillow, like this…

Now, lay the pillow cover top facedown on a flat surface (right side facing down).

Next, lay the 2 pieces of fabric (right side facing up) on top of the pillow cover top, with the edges of the ‘envelope’ overlapping by about 2″.

Smooth out the pieces of fabric, mark where you need to trim the fabric (I use a right angle to make sure the corners are square), make sure you are allowing enough fabric to cut your strips!

Trim the top and bottom fabric at the same time, to keep the edges lined up.

Now cut a square from each corner that is the same length and width as the length of the fabric strips you will cut. In the image above, I showed the first few cuts you will make. You’ll need to continue this with each corner.

Once the corners are removed, lay a yardstick from corner to corner to guide your cuts to create the fabric strips. You may also use a piece of masking tape to mark the length of the strips.

Cut all of the fabric strips for each side of the pillow. Do your best to line up the 3 layers of fabric (in the center top and bottom of cover where the envelope back is located) so that the fabric strips are cut where the overlapping edges end. This sounds complicated but it isn’t really.

Tie or braid the edges to finish your pillow. The spots with 3 layers will be a bit more difficult to knot, so you might wish to use a different edging method.

You are welcome to download the instruction sheet on How to Make a Fleece Pillow Sham!

I’ve also created a cover for my office chair and several other projects with fleece remnants I purchased very inexpensively. It is an easy material to work with and the finished product is nice and soft.

I have several more projects I’m working on and hope to share the results with you soon! I’ll try to get some better photos to show you how I made these projects. For now, I have new projects taking over my life!

Have you ever made a fleece throw or pillow cover? Leave a comment!

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    • Lisa Lombardo
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