DIY: Sweater Pillow Tutorial

One of the trendiest fall/winter DIYs this season is the sweater pillow. I absolutely love the cozy look that knit textures add to a living space, especially when the weather turns colder!

Inspired to make my own, I found some unwanted sweaters that were still in great condition to transform into a pretty decor piece. Now, I am not a sewer – the thought of using a needle and thread for anything is intimidating. Not because I can’t do it … I just can’t do it well, and the results are usually pitiful. But for those of you who can relate, you’ll be relieved to know that this can easily be done with little skill in a short amount of time, no sewing machine required!


Sweater Pillow DIY

Do it yourself using old favourite sweaters or discount finds!

Author Katrina Lindhorst


  1. Choose the pillow size you need and purchase an appropriate-sized insert (or, repurpose a removable insert from a pillow you already have!). I used a 20"x20" feather insert. 

  2. Find old and/or discounted sweaters that look warm and cozy. Depending on the size of your insert, you'll want to find over-sized and extra-large sizes - check out the men's section or raid your husband's closet!

  3. Before you start cutting, slip the sweater over the pillow (to see if it fits) and determine where to sew. You can mark the places you may need to cut or use pins to capture the shape. 

  4. Remove the pillow cover and turn the sweater inside out. You can use a sewing machine to sew a straight line across the bottom of the sweater at the waist, and just outside each armhole. Or, you can freehand stitch it, like I did. Go over the seams two or three times to ensure they are strong. Left the top open so the cover can be easily slipped on and off the insert; use buttons, Velcro, or snaps to secure it closed.

    Alternately, you can sew up the top and use velcro or snaps to securely close the bottom, or insert the pillow and hand stitch the bottom for a permanent pillow design. 

  5. Cut off the arms and turn out your sweater pillowcase. Slip over insert - voila, you're finished!


Because of the style of the sweater, I actually made the pillowcase upside-down with the neck at the bottom of the pillow and the waist of the sweater as the top. So feel free to modify the above directions to suit your sweater style and pillow shape!

And the end result!


Considering it was a quick project that required little experience, I was pleased with how it turned out!

Here are some more pillow style ideas to inspire you!


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