Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Dritz® cut-to-length brass zippers deliver the details.

Decorating with floor pillows is an easy way to update a space. And when you make them yourself, you control the pillow’s color, texture, size and details. We are really loving the look the Dritz® exposed zippers add to our pillows. That, combined with some eclectic fabrics, makes for some really fresh, really on-trend accessories. Stack them in any room, and voilà – it’s an instant home refresh!

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Dritz® supplies:

Other supplies:

  • 7/8 yard each of 2 different home decor fabrics
  • 28” pillow insert (we used a 28″ x 28″ Soft Touch® insert from Fairfield™)
  • Iron and pressing surface
  • Sewing Machine with zipper foot and basic sewing supplies
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Optional: Serger

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

This is the look we’re going for. Ready?

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Cut a 28” square from each fabric. To eliminate floppy “dog ears” on pillow points, follow this tutorial to reduce the fabric in the corners. (Due to the size of this pillow, we marked 6” from each corner and not 4”.)

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Finish the edge of the fabric squares along the side that will have the zipper with a zig-zag stitch or serge stitching. This will keep the fabric from unraveling easily as the zipper is installed. You can finish all the edges of the fabric squares if you would like.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

On each fabric square, mark 1 ½” in and ¾” down from each corner of the zipper seam. (A) Draw a line, ¾” from edge of square, connecting the 2 marks. (B) At each mark, draw a short perpendicular line from the mark to the edge of the fabric. (C) This is your stitching line for the zipper opening.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Stitch along your drawn lines on each fabric square; pivoting at each corner and backstitching at beginning and end. (We used a contrasting thread to show our stitches.)

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

With right sides together, line up the end stitching lines of the zipper opening. Use a pin to help you match the corners.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Stitch with ½” seam allowance from the outer edge to a few stitches into the top zipper opening. Backstitch at beginning and end. Repeat at the bottom of the zipper opening.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Cut an angled slit to each corner of the zipper opening. Be sure to not cut the stitches. Apply Fray Check® to cut fabric edges.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Press ½” seams at top and bottom of zipper open. Press long edges of zipper opening along stitching lines. Do not press small ends of zipper opening.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

With wrong side up, lay strips of Wash Away™ Wonder Tape along edges of zipper opening. Remove backing paper.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Turn pillow over and position zipper chain under opening. Center zipper in opening with center of teeth about ¼” from the edges. Push zipper against tape to hold in place. Be sure to keep triangle ends of zipper opening free. If desired, you can also use pins or fabric glue to hold zipper in place.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Flip pillow to wrong side and stitch just the zipper tape and seam allowance together. Using a zipper foot, stitch directly over the stitching lines along each side of opening. Do not catch triangle ends in stitching.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

On right side, fold triangle ends of zipper opening under and tuck to wrong side. Mark 1 zipper tooth on each side of chain directly below the stitching line. Repeat at other end of zipper.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Separate zipper chain. Remove the tooth by each mark. This will provide a gap to stitch the zipper end at the opening without damaging your needle.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Insert zipper slide onto zipper chain from the bottom of zipper, following package instructions. (The round top of the teeth point up.) Close zipper to about 1” from top opening.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

On wrong side, pull back excess fabric around triangle ends. Pin ends to zipper. Stitch triangle ends to zipper, directly over opening end stitches. Carefully stitch over gap in zipper chain. You may want to turn the machine hand wheel by hand to make sure you do not hit any teeth.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Trim off excess zipper chain at both ends.

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Open zipper a few inches. With right sides together, pin and stitch remaining sides of pillow together with ½” seam allowance. Pivot at corners and backstitch at beginning and end of stitches. Trim corners and turn right side out through open zipper. 

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

Insert pillow form and close zipper. You love? We do!

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

When you begin planning your floor pillow project, get creative with your fabric choices. We had several vintage Shibori-like fabrics in our stash that we knew we wanted to use for these pillows. That was our starting point.  

Sewing Tutorial: How to Make a Floor Pillow with Exposed Zipper

We complemented the Shibori-style fabrics with other purchased fabrics to create three distinct looks that work nicely together. After all, if you’re going to the trouble to make it yourself, make it great, right?!

We hope this sewing tutorial has inspired you to make a stack of floor pillows! They really are versatile. Stack them in any room to add instant style. 

Check out all of our pillows and DIY home inspiration, and follow us on Instagram and Facebook to see what we’re up to each and every day.

Happy home refresh!

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