Sewing Throw Pillow Covers: 5 Take-aways

This is my stylish, sweet as can be, Swedish mother-in-law, Ulla. Remember that sewing lesson I was supposed to get from her when I went to Sweden a few weeks ago?


Well, it didn’t all go exactly as planned. Ok, I’ll just say it. This post was supposed to be a throw pillow cover tutorial. But it isn’t, and therefore not of much use to you. Why isn’t it a tutorial? For one, there was a language barrier. My mother inlaw speaks Swedish to me. I speak English to her. This has worked fine for years and we rarely have problems understanding one another. But since sewing lingo isn’t quite what we’re used to discussing, there were some issues this time.  And I would’ve gladly just watched closely and documented every step as she went along in the planning, cutting, measuring and pinning process. Except for there were two little toddler spectators there. Which means it was the exact opposite of a calm one-on-one, productive sewing lesson. I did, however, come away with some sewing learnings. I also happened to sew two very pretty pillow covers (virtually) all by myself! Yay!

So here are my 5 Sewing Lesson Take-aways

1. If you’d like to be able to  wash whatever it is you are sewing (at some point), it’s a good idea to sew once all around your piece of fabric before you start stitching things up to make sure it doesn’t fray in the long run.

2. There’s more to sewing than the executing of the sewing. Planning plays a critical role in whether your project comes out as you envision it!

3. Anticipate needing a plan B. Despite your best efforts, sometimes things happen that interfere with said initial plan! In hindsight, I should’ve brought a zipper with me to use for the pillow cover closure. That’s what I envisioned. A nice crisp pillow. But with the night-before-we-leave packing bonanza, complete with the boys playing inside our enormous family suitcase, the zipper didn’t quite make it. But we improvised. To close the pillow cover we simply left a flap of fabric that could be folded over and secured with three exposed large buttons. Although it’s not the clean lines I was going for, I’m pretty happy with the unique look it gives the pillows.

4. Ironing the fabric makes it look really nice, and learning to sew button holes sometimes breaks machines.

5. P. Kaufmann’s Ladbroke/Cir Peacock Fabric as a throw pillow cover is really a beautiful addition to a room.

Would love to hear your sewing tips. Please share below!