I’ve mentioned before that one of the best ways to spruce up your saiboat saloon, your v-berth, or aft cabin is with throw pillows. They are easily interchangable, and if you get tired of the colors, you can buy new ones, or better yet, recover the old ones with new fabric!

Today, we’re going to show you a simple pattern that anyone can use to create flange envelope pillow covers.

What’s a Flange Envelope Pillow Cover?

Flange pillows are pillows that have a “rim” or “flange” around the edges. The envelope is the flap in the back of the pillow that allows you to stuff your pillow in. Most pillow covers are envelope style pillow covers.

Some people prefer non-flange pillows, which we’ll have a pattern for soon.

Materials Needed

You’ll need the following materials, which will allow you to make (2) pillow covers for (2) 18″ pillows.

  • 1.5 yards of 54″ wide fabric (Decorating tip: since pillows aren’t permanent, why not have fun with the patterns!)
  • (2) 18″ pillow forms, or old throw pillows
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine (optional… you can sew these by hand if you wish)
  • Thread
  • Needle (if you want to sew by hand)
  • Iron or steamer

Directions for Each Pillow

Step 1: Cut your fabric pieces:

  • (1) square, 20″ x 20″
  • (1) rectangle, 20″ x 17″
  • (1) rectangle, 20″ x 13″

Flange envelope pillow cover pieces

Note: If you want to make a smaller or larger pillow cover, just use the same measurements, but add or subtract 2″ on each side, for each inch enlarged or reduced.

For example, here are the pieces you’d need for each of the following pillow sizes:

16″ pillow: (1) 18″ x 18″ square, (1) 18″ x 15″ rectangle, (1) 18″ x 11″ rectangle

20″ pillow: (1) 22″ x 22″ square, (1) 22″ x 19″ rectangle, (1) 22″ x 15″ rectangle

22″ pillow: (1) 24″ x 24″ square, (1) 24″ x 21″ rectangle, (1) 24″ x 17″ rectangle

Step 2: Hem the 2 smaller pieces on one side

You’ll want to take the two smaller, rectangle pieces and hem one long (20″) side of each rectangle.

It should look like this:

Step 3: Assemble the pieces

Place the 20″ square face up.

Lay the 17″ rectangle face down on top, matching the raw edges at the top.

Lay the 13″ rectangle face down, on top of the other two, matching the raw edges at the bottom.

Step 4: Pin around the edges, all the way around

Step 5: Stitch a 1/2″ seam all around

Step 6: Clip the 4 corners

Note: You just want to clip the edges of the corners. Be careful not to clip inside the seam you just sewed.

Step 7: Turn inside out

Poke out the corners to make clean corners.

Step 8: Press with an iron or steamer

Step 9: Topstitch 1″ from edge all around

This 1″ of extra material will be the “flange” part of your pillow cover.

Step 10: Insert your pillow

Voila! Now you know how to sew a simple flange envelope pillow cover!

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