A wonderful way of using your punch needle projects is making pillow covers. Envelope pillows are an easy and quick project that won’t require extensive sewing skills.
Make sure that your punch needle piece is the same size as the pillow insert you are creating a cover for. This will ensure that your pillow will look full and fluffy. For this example, we’re working with a 42 x 42 cm pillow / punch needle piece. If you’re making a case for a standard 40 cm insert, you should replace 42 cm with 40 cm.
Materials & Tools (for one square 42 cm pillow)
- 62 cm of woven fabric — try Linen Cotton Canvas, Heavyweight Cotton Twill
- 42x42 cm Punch Needle Piece, don’t cut away extra monk’s cloth on the sides to avoid fraying. (Optional: if you have a serger, use it to finish the edges 3 cm from each side)
- Thread, Pinning Needles, Fabric Scissors
- Sewing Machine
- Zipper Foot
- 42 cm square Pillow Insert
How to come up with the right measurements
You can make an envelope pillow case for any size insert. For the back pieces you’ll need two rectangles of fabric measuring A (Height) by D (Width). To get these measurements follow the formula below:
A = Punch Needle piece height + 1 cm + 1 cm (hem)
B = ⅓ of pillow width for the envelope overlap
C/2 = D (this includes 1 cm hem on one side and 2 cm hem on the other)
Back piece measurements (remember: you’ll need two of these): Height = A, Width = D
How To Make A Basic Punch Needle Envelope Pillow
1. Following the formula above we need to cut two 29 x 44 cm pieces for the back.
2. On each back piece, fold a 1 cm hem on one 44 cm side to the wrong side, and iron. Fold again 1 cm, iron, and then pin.
3. Turn the back pieces to the right side and sew the pinned 1 cm hem in top stitch. Both back pieces now have three raw edges and one hemmed side.
4. Place one of the back pieces face down on the right side of the punch needle piece, line up all three raw edges, and pin. Place the second back piece face down, overlapping the first on the hemmed side, and line up all three raw edges to the front fabric and pin. The overlap of both back sides should be 14 cm. Even though it might be tedious, make sure to pin all sides of the pillow generously. It’s super important because the front piece is quite fat and you don't want your lined up pieces to move.
5. Now it’s time to sew everything together. Move the needle of your sewing machine all the way to the left. If you have a zipper foot for your machine (shown below), this will make it ever easier to get very close to the edge of the punch needle piece. Feel where the punch needle piece starts and get close to its edge. Now sew with a short (2 cm) straight stitch with a 1 cm seam around the entire perimeter, making sure to backstitch at each end.
6. Once you’ve sewn all four edges together you can cut away the extra monks cloth from your punch needle front piece. Turn right-side out through the overlap in back and insert the pillow form.
Give it a try and let me know in the comments if anything is unclear. Also, please share your creations on Instagram by tagging @thejoyfulpunch and #thejoyfulpunch. I can't wait to see what you'll be making.
This tutorial was created in collaboration with Anda Corrie. Do you like the constellations fabric poster in the back? Check out Anda's shop on Spoonflower to find this and more of her designs.