Pleated Pintuck Pillow Tutorial with Bev from Flamingo Toes.

Today we have a guest at The Southern Institute!  I’m so happy to have met Bev, mainly through the Sew Fab e-pattern Bundle Sale.  She was an affiliate for the sale and the winner of the huge giveaway!  I had seen her around the blogs before, but this is how I really got in contact with her, and can I just say what a sweet lady this is?  Of course, if you  already know Bev than you already know that.  She’s here today to share a beautiful project with us.  Welcome to The Southern Institute, Bev!


I am so excited to be visiting at The Southern Institute today! My name is Bev and I blog over at Flamingo Toes.


Over at Flamingo Toes I love to do all sorts of projects – jewelry, sewing, home decor – whatever! Today I have a tutorial for you that is a combination of a couple of those – this darling little Pleated Pintuck Pillow!

How to Make a Pleated Pintuck Pillow

Isn’t it sweet? It’s all vintagy and pom pomy. I love it. I think I’m on a pom pom kick right now. They’re so yummy.

Chevron Pintucks

The pleated pin tucks are super fun too – and soooo easy to do!

So are you ready to get started on the pillow tutorial? Here’s your materials list:

  • One 12″ x 16″ pillow form
  • Main fabric – 1/2 yard should be plenty for front and back
  • Accent fabric (the print on this pillow) 1/4 yard is plenty
  • Pom pom trim – 1 2/3 yards

Start by cutting the front pieces for your pillow. You’ll need 5 strips that are 3 1/4″ x 16″ of the main fabric and 4 strips that are 2″ x 16″ of the accent fabric.

linen and fabric strips

Sew your strips together, alternating main and accent prints, along the long edges, with a 1/2″ seam allowance. Press the seams away from the accent fabrics.

linen and fabric

Now, you’re thinking this is wayyyyy to big for a 12″ x 16″ pillow. And you’re right. So let’s fix that.

We’re going to start pressing pleats into the main fabric. All pleats will face the accent fabric. So the top strip will have a pleat that folds down over the accent fabric and the second main fabric’s top pleat will fold up over the 1st accent strip. All the pleats will be 3/8″.

Here’s a little tip to make pressing super easy. Cut a piece of posterboard and draw a line along one long side, 3/8″ from the edge. Place the edge of the posterboard along one of the seams and fold the fabric so that the pressed edge will line up with your line. Makes it all super easy to have even pleats.

(Also, please ignore my scabby ironing board cover.)

pressing pleats

Press in pleats in all the main fabric strips.

pleated pillow front

The panel should now measure 12″ x 16″. Yay you!

Mark the sewing lines for the pintucks next. Painter’s tape works great for this – it holds all the pleats in place when you move the panel around. Place one strip of tape in the center of the panel – 8″ from each end. Place two more strips of tape 5″ from the center. It will help if you keep your tape pieces on the same side of each of your future stitching lines. Mine are all to the left.

Go through and fold back the bottoms of the pleats in the main fabric and hold them in place with the tape.

taping for pintucks

Sew along your tape lines, making sure you sew the pleats back and that everything lays flat as you go.

sewing pin tucks

sewing pleats

Measure new lines 2 1/2″ from each side of the center. Add tape to mark your place. Fold back the tops of the main sections so these pleats go the opposite direction. Sew them in place.


Fold the sides of the main strips up or down to keep the pattern going all the way to the ends of the panel. Baste in place by sewing 1/4″ from the edge.

sewing pin tucks creating pin tucks

Lay your pom pom trim just inside the edge of the panel and pin in place. Overlap the trim at the bottom and sew in place. (The pom poms should point inward towards the center.)

Sewing Pompoms on a pillow

Cut out the back pieces for your pillow. Cut 2 pieces of the main fabric 8″ x 16″ and 1 strip of the accent fabric 2″ x 16″.

Fold the accent fabric in half long ways, wrong sides together. Press. Place the raw edges along one long side of one of your 8″ x 16″ pieces. Sew together using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Zig zag stitch the edges so they don’t fray. Press the seam allowance towards the main fabric and top stitch just above the seam.

Pillow Backing

Zig zag one long side of the other 8″ x 16″ piece. Lay the piece with the pretty edge right side up over the right side of the other piece. They should overlap to make a panel 12″ x 16″. This will give us an envelope back. Baste the pieces together where they overlap 1/4″ from the edge.

Place the front and back pieces right sides together and sew around all four sides. Make sure the pom poms are all out of the way. Accidental pom pom sewing is no fun. Clip your corners and turn right side out. Be careful if you need to press that you don’t mess up the pin tucks, or press them too flat.

Pop in your pillow form and you are all done!

Linen and fabric Pintuck Pillow

So cute and fun – and it was easy right? But it looks complicated. Which is totally awesome. :)

Pleated Pintuck Pillow Tutorial (2)

I hope you liked the tutorial!

I’d love for you to come over and visit Flamingo Toes! My Tutorials Page is a great place to start!
Here are a few of my favorites!

Thanks for having me over Jenny!

Thank you so much for being my guest today, Bev!

Be sure to come by The Southern Institute tomorrow… I’ll be giving away a great resource for you bloggers out there!


  1. Oh, I am in love with Bev’s pintucking! I love grey with everything; so, lovely fabric choices too. Wonderful tutorial! I want a little girl’s dress with that sweet pintucking on it for our daughter too! ~heather

  2. kellie says:

    This is so sweet! I love the fabric pairing as well!

  3. Tracy Revalee says:

    Another amazing tutorial, Bev, and another darling piece. Who doesn’t need more pillows? Thanks for sharing!

  4. Willow says:

    I just love your pillow Bev!!! Glad I came to visit…

  5. Gail says:

    This is such a sweet detail. I can’t wait to try it on a skirt for my grandaughter. Thanks for sharing!

  6. samita says:

    Dear Bev,
    The pleated pintuck pillow is lovely,and u have explained it so well!
    thank you :)

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