How and why I came up with this idea.

As a child, I always remember I had a pillow case cover with my name written on it. My mothers dear friend and neighbour made it for me when I was only a child. I only ever remember it being used on my bed to sleep on.

When I had my first daughter, I stumbled on my old pillow case and thought – why not make one for her too. Back then (16yrs ago), I made the pillow case from scratch, bought white cotton fabric (from spotlight) and some pretty floral printed fabric for the other side. I began by writing the name and drawing a picture around it. Took out my fabric paints and got creative, hung it out to dry (which didn’t take long at all) and then sewed the pillow case up (not forgetting the button hole for the coat hanger)!

What I loved about my idea was that is was great for the husband too. Not only could they find the children’s PJ’s, but they also learnt to put them away as well. When the children were very small, just before their baths I would put their PJ’s, singlet and nappy inside the pillow bag and either hook it over the bathroom towel rail or the bedroom door knob. This way hubby was able to help out when doing the baths and dressing the children afterwards….NO EXCUSES man!

Another great use for these name pillow bags are for travelling on a long holiday (the car trip). Each child uses their own pillow and name bag, there are no fights in the car (over the pillows that is) they know which one is there’s. It is also helpful when you have to take linen with you to some places of accommodation.

pillow bags

pillow bags 2

After years of use, I have had to replace the backing on some of them, as they have torn at the button hole opening – a result of the material growing thin and the weight of clothes in them.

I  have now worked out that the quilted fabric (which I also bought from spotlight) is much sturdier for the coat hanger and clothes.

Now for some finer details and instructions and what you will need:

  • White or a light coloured fabric (big enough for the name section – just get a pillow case to measure)
  • Coloured fabric for the back – or 1.5mtres of quilted fabric.
  • Lead pencil, ruler, stencils or the lettering book!
I have had this book for many years (since my school days)!
  • Fabric Paints (purchased from spotlight or a craft store).


  • Old newspaper

To begin, cut out your pieces of fabric (here are some pillow case making instructions).

Start by writing the name on the viewing side, you can use stencils or in my case I traced from my lettering book.


Once you are ready to paint, put a sheet of newspaper underneath or if using a ready-made pillow case, put the paper in the middle. Once it has dried, finish off the sewing process making sure you don’t forget that button hole at the top fold for the coat hanger!

These wooden coat hangers are better to use as they are stronger!

Finished product: I recently re-made these, from my original ones. I cut around the name part, made up a new pillowcase from some quilted material and fixed it to the front side.



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