Easy No Sew 5 Minute DIY Pillows

09.12.13 By //

Making simple no-sew pillows is quite simply easy as pie and has become one of my favorite pastimes….that I do in the present… a lot. I always seem to have clothing that no longer fits or has been 'injured' in some way, most likely a DIY project involving paint, fabric dye or cement… and turning those clothing remnants into pillows is a great way to get yourself a one of a kind pillow that is in a style you very likely love, you know, since you formerly wore the thing. It costs you no more than the fabric glue and perhaps a pillow insert if you don't already have on hand a shabby pillow you are also tired of and that could use an update. 

If you are working with fabric you purchase, this process couldn't be more easy… simply cut your fabric into 2 equally sized squares approximately 1″ larger than your pillow insert, place the 'right' sides in (facing each other), and run a line of glue in between your squares along 3 of the sides, let it dry for a few minutes, turn right side out, insert pillow, and carefully glue the last side by running a thin line of glue along one top edge and gently laying the other bottom edge over the line of glue. This is sort of like folding the top down on an envelope, only teeny tiny and much more permanent.

See how easy it is… I gave you the whole run down in 1 long run on sentence! Yay! Down below I will show you how I do this when I am working with a shirt or tank top, which seems to be the most common form my pillows come in these days.

When you are working with a shirt or tank that has 2 sides already sewn, and a hem along the bottom edge, this works to your advantage quite a bit. It really means you only need to glue 2 out of the 4 sides, and one of them is all nice and even just waiting for you to do so. I leave that side for my closing side since it's likely to be the easiest to work with along that last edge you will close up. 


Before I make any cuts I generally place my pillow inside the shirt so I can see about where I need to hack that baby up at. I just use my fingers to hold the sides together and then eyeball an extra 1/2″ or so beyond that point to make my cut along the top of the shirt. If your shirt is undersized just a tad, you can simply find the straightest portion, generally right under the sleeves and cut there, just know you will be stuffing that bad boy a bit later. But hey, a fluffy pillow is a healthy pillow, am I right?


Turn your tube inside out and run a thin line of glue along the edge in between the layers on the side you just cut (not the hemmed edge). Let this dry for a bit, maybe 20 minutes to be safe, and turn it right side out! 

Your cute little pillow in the making should now look like the image above with 3 sides already closed for you! Be sure to use a pencil eraser and poke out the corners a bit so it looks professional. Then go ahead and stuff that pillow into your 3 sided tube!

All you have to do now is let the shirt do the work for you. Line up your edges and hold them somewhat close together. Run a thin line of glue along the first 1 1/2″ of the top side of one layer. You will work in small sections and basically just fold the other side gently over the first side (like you see above) and lightly press it so the glue grabs. Hold together for a few seconds before moving on to the next small section and repeat until you get to the end! Let the glue set up and you are finished. This project seriously take about 5 minutes and is such a fun way to update your space and get rid of some clothing that is bogging down your closet! Of course if you prefer to buy your fabric, then it's even easier and you can whip these out like nobodies business! 

Tie Dye Pillow: Tank from WalMart Circa 2009 $5, pillow insert from Ikea $2.99

Faux Fur Pillow: Faux Chinchilla Fur Fabric from Joann's circa 2003 $7/yd, pillow insert from Joann's $4

Sequin Pillow: Tank from Old Navy 2012, pillow insert is an old pillow I just reused.

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5 comments on “Easy No Sew 5 Minute DIY Pillows”

    1. I used a basic fabric glue. I am fairly certain it was this one: It worked well and set up quickly. What I did find is that if you get a tad crazy with the glue, even though it dries clear, you will see the excess glue. It is easy enough to wipe off though, and it won’t be an issue, just but be sure to wipe away excess before it dries.

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