Hello again, DTLB readers! I'm Jen, and I blog at Fresh Crush. Today I'm here to teach you how to make a pillow with a zipper. Trust me, you can do it. It's really not that complicated, so don't be scared away.
Last time I was here I showed you my DIY Drum Shade Upgrade. This time around, I'm working with that gorgeous buffalo check fabric again, and making some zippered pillows. I made these pillows in my daughter's bedroom design, and you can take a look at that entire makeover here. Now, I'm read to teach you how to make a pillow with a zipper, so let's get to it. This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.
How to Make a Pillow With a Zipper
My personal preference is to work with down-filled pillow forms — they are great for getting that crisp karate-chop shape when styling your space. I found mine at Ikea, and they were a very reasonable price as compared to some fabric store brands. I like to measure my fabric to the exact size of my pillow form, and then add 1 inch (on all sides) for seam allowance. For this project you'll need two pieces in complementary fabrics, for a two-sided pillow.
- Fabric (in two patterns) (I know Tasha's favorite place to order fabric is Fabric.com)
- A Down-filled Pillow Form (Ikea is the best place to get these, but if you don't live near one, Amazon has some great deals too)
- Seam Ripper
- Zipper Foot
- Sewing Machine (this is Tasha's sewing machine that she LOVES–it frequently goes on sale for 40 to 50% so keep you eyes open if you are in the market for a machine)
This is a zipper foot and it is really important when you are learning how to make a pillow with a zipper. I had recently purchased my Singer sewing machine and it came with one, and admittedly I had never used one before. But have no fear, if you've never worked with a zipper foot before, it is your friend! I absolutely love working with it and I will never go back. When we get a little further along, you'll see it in action and why I love it so much.
Step One. Let's attach the zipper! Take one piece of your fabric and on the edge you would like to attach your zipper, press the seam allowance up onto the wrong side of the fabric (or to the inside of your pillow).
Step Two. Pin your zipper in place. Center, and line up the edge of your pressed fabric with one side of your zipper. The fabric fold should just kiss the actual zipper. Pin to the wrong side of the pressed fabric with the zipper facing down. This will put the right side of the zipper, with the right side of your fabric.
Step Three. Attach your zipper foot to your sewing machine. On my particular sewing machine, there is a little arm at the back of the machine that releases a little hook that grabs and holds the bar on the zipper foot and holds it in place. You can choose to have it on the right or left side depending on which direction you're sewing on your project.
Step Four. Line up your pinned zipper and fabric with the zipper OPEN. You'll notice the unzipped zipper slides right underneath the zipper foot allowing you to stitch immediately beside it with no fear of accidentally stitching over your zipper. Stitch the length of your first pillow edge to hold the zipper in place. Prepare your opposite piece of fabric in the same way, with the pressed seam allowance.
Now you should have something that looks a bit like ^this. This is the view from above of the two “right sides” of fabric showing, with the zipper attached to the first side, right side facing up.
Step Five. Zip up the zipper. Take your second piece of fabric and butt the pressed seam up against the first piece of fabric already attached to the zipper. Pin in place. This view is everything facing up on the “right-sides”.
Step Six. Unzip the zipper. Switch your zipper foot to the other side, and sew this side of the zipper in place, just as you did the first side.
This is exciting! Now you've attached your zipper!
Step Seven. Flip your fabrics right-side to right-side. You should now be looking at both the wrong side of your fabrics and the wrong side of your zipper. Double check your pillow form measurements, and transfer those measurements to your pillow. You have one completed edge, so you only need seam allowance on three sides. Pin along your sewing line on three sides.
Step Nine. When you're done sewing, trim as needed. Now, unzip your finished pillow case and flip it right-side out.
Step Ten. Stuff your pillow! Yay, you're almost there! Hand-stitch across your two sides just beyond the top and bottom of your zipper to add durability and avoid any gaps that may have occurred between the edge of the actual zipper and the tape it is attached to.
You're done! Now you know how to make a pillow with a zipper! I told you it wasn't that complicated :)
I am a total beginner when sewing zippered pillows, so if I can figure it out, I know you can too! Keep your seam-ripper handy for any little mistakes and you'll do awesome! Let's take a peek at my pillows in action, shall we?
I made a total of four pillows for my daughters room this way, and they were all a success, and they're holding up great with everything my five-year-old puts them through… forts… hopping lily pads… pillow fights… it's all good!
Making all the pillows two-sided totally opens you up to being able to switch the feeling of your decor at a simple flip of the pillow. So much bang for your buck when you're putting all that work into making a beautiful pillow anyway, right?
If you liked this project, you might also like to check out these projects over at Fresh Crush!
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