Hand Sew A Pillow Closed – An Easy Tutorial

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I’ve recently updated this post along with my How To Make A Pillow post.  Enjoy!

Recently, I shared with you how to make a pillow, but in that post I didn’t go into the different ways to close a pillow once you’ve made the cover and inserted the pillow form.  There are several ways to close a pillow  – you can machine stitch the bottom edges closed, insert a zipper, or you can use my favorite method – hand sew a pillow closed using a ladder stitch.   That’s the method I’ll be sharing with you today.

Be sure to check out our popular How To Make Pillows page for over 25 pillow ideas, tips & techniques.

How To hand-Sew A Pillow Closed from NewtonCustomInteriors.com

How To Hand Sew A Pillow Closed

Here is a short video I did showing how to hand sew a pillow closed using the ladder stitch.  Written instructions are below the video.

 Sewing notions that I like to use for hand-sewing:

Dual Duty Plus Hand Quilting thread that matches fabric
Hand-sewing needle – John James Long Darners #7
Leather thimble from Clover
leather thimble







Written instructions –

1) Before hand sewing a pillow closed, I recommend serging the bottom edges of the pillow.  This will help keep the edges of the fabric from fraying.

2) After serging the bottom edges, sew a stitching line 3/8″ away from edges of fabric along the bottom side.  This will give you a good guideline for making your 1/2″ fold/seam allowance.

3) Starting at the right side of the pillow – take a small stitch on one side of the fabric.  Then take another stitch directly across on the other side of the pillow.

4) Continue on across the bottom edge of the pillow from right to left.

5) When you get to the left side of the pillow, make a knot.

Here you can see the bottom of the finished pillow closed with the ladder stitch.  The ladder stitch really does make a nice closure for the pillow.  Hard to tell that it isn’t a regular machine-stitched seam.

pillow hand sewn closed

I hope you’ve enjoyed my how to hand-sew a pillow closed tutorial today!

How To Hand-Sew A Pillow Closed


If you loved this pillow tutorial, you’ll love these pillow tutorials too:

How To Make A Pillow With Video Tutorial from NewtonCustomInteriors.com

How To Make A Pillow


How To Make Cording

How To Make A Pillow With Cording from NewtonCustomInteriors.com

How To Make A Pillow With Cording

I’m joining these parties.

Savvy Southern Style

Between Naps On The Porch


  1. Bia says

    This is my favorite hand stitch – and I’ve been looking for a good tutorial and this is the best one I’ve found! And I LOVE your thimble…you mean business!
    Bia recently posted…Porch Make-OverMy Profile

  2. says

    Your video was extremely helpful since I am a visual learner. Thank you for sharing that wonderful way to close an opening. I’ll be sure to use it in the future.

  3. says

    Awesome tutorial!
    Thank you so much for sharing this on Tutorial Thursdays. Please do come by and place your vote on your favourite link from last week, it may be featured if it wins the voting! I look forward to seeing what you share with us this week :)

    Marigolds’ Loft
    Natalie recently posted…Moving ForwardMy Profile

  4. Carrie This Home says

    I’m so glad you posted the video–that’s very helpful for sewers with not much experience like myself! I’m stopping by from Inspire Me Please (#2 Budget Bathroom Makeover and 11 Inspiring Ideas) Have a great weekend!

  5. says

    Thanks for this tip! My daughter makes pillows often, but I have been to intimidated to try it. (Mainly because I didn’t know how to close it! I’m going to pin this. Stopped by from the LOBS.

  6. Nicole says

    Thank you so much for the tutorial! On my way to sew closed my little one’s tooth fairy pillow!
    Warm regards,

  7. D Wmd says

    Thank You! So much for the tutorial! The Ladder stitch is such a handsome stitch! I used it to sew the reverse on the bias binding around a pillow, and the stitch is indiscernible from the machine stitched side. I will be using this stitch for a lot of my hand- stitched finishings. I am extremely happy with the results.

  8. says

    Great tutorial!
    I would love for you to stop by my blog and join our link party Something to talk About!
    Have a great day and hope to see you there!


  1. […] tutorial on using the Ladder Stitch to finish a pillow cover Ladder Stitch Tutorial at Newton Custom Interiors Blog “Here is a short video I did showing how to hand sew a pillow closed using the ladder stitch. […]

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