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Hot Dog, A Pillowcase!

January 29, 2010

Isn’t it a beauty?

Printable PDF Tutorial!

My favorite quilt store, Honey Bee, is participating in American Patchwork & Quilting’s 1 Million Pillowcase Challenge. The first batch of gorgeous handmade pillowcases that Honey Bee has collected is going to the Texas Baptist Children’s Home, located in Round Rock, Texas.

I knew as soon as I heard about it that I wanted to participate.

Early on in the pillowcase drive, Honey Bee had a demo for the “Hot Dog” pillowcase method, which rumor has it is super-duper easy.

Only, I missed the demo.  Oops.  You see, it was on a Friday at lunch time.  Every Friday, I have a date lunch with my awesome hubby, so obviously going to a free pillowcase how-to demo was not going to win out over date lunch!

Well, I’ve made pillowcases before, so I wasn’t too fussed about it.  Then, a couple of weeks later, my sewing friends and I had a sewing day at our friend Linda’s house.  Osie, who happens to be one of the Goddesses of Honey Bee, was working on pillowcases for the drive and took a few minutes to show us how the mystical “Hot Dog” works.

Hot dog!  Seriously, hot dog!  This is the easiest, fastest and cleanest-looking pillowcase method I’ve seen.  Including the pillowcase used in this tutorial, I’ve now made 11 of these bad boys.  So easy, so fun…and excellent for stash busting!

Pillowcase 1 – 10, on their way to Honey Bee, all made from fabrics I had in my stash.

This was not my invention and there are a couple of tutorials floating around out there, but this is too good not to post again.  This is my take on the instructions.  I hope you enjoy, make lots of pillowcases and donate them to charity!  (Oh, okay, you can keep one or two for yourself!)

Pillowcases donated through Honey Bee!  The last I heard there were over 200!

Read more on the Honey Bee Blog.

They’ve even made it easy by offering pre-cut kits with

free how-to sheets for the Hot Dog method!

You’ll need:

Three lengths of fabric in three coordinating colors.  Makes one standard size pillowcase.

  • BUN (cuff) – 12″ x WOF (width of fabric ~ 44″)
  • MUSTARD (flange) – 2″ – 3″ x WOF (you can also use leftover quilt binding for this)
  • HOT DOG (body) 24″ – 26″ x WOF

You can vary the bun/hot dog size up or down, just make sure that the total yardage between those two is 36″ – 38″. 9 – 12″ for the bun is ideal.

If you use two yards of coordinating fabric, plus 6″ of a third, you can make two coordinating pillowcases with opposite colors!

My colors for this tutorial – a pre-cut kit from Honey Bee.  Isn’t the fabric just delicious?

Hot Dog, Bun & Mustard!   Once your fabric is cut and pressed and you’re ready to go!

Roll out your BUN, right side up.

Press the MUSTARD in half

Place MUSTARD with raw edges matching along one side of the BUN.

Place HOT DOG on top of MUSTARD, face down.  Align raw seams.  Add a few pins to hold in place.

Roll the HOT DOG (hey, now it looks like a hot dog!) to within a few inches of the pinned edge.

Fold the BUN over the HOT DOG and pin along the raw edge, making sure to catch all layers of fabric.

Stitch along raw edge using a 3/8″ seam allowance.

Remove any pins and birth your HOT DOG!  Roll BUN back, gently tugging the HOT DOG out of the center.

Continue tugging and rolling until the HOT DOG is all the way out.

Your pillowcase should now look something like this.

Smooth out the fabric, then press the BUN and MUSTARD, tugging gently so it’ll lie flat.  I like to press on both sides.

Square up your pillowcase by removing the selvage.

With WRONG SIDES together (yes, I said wrong sides!), align the MUSTARD and corners of the pillowcase.

Pin in several places.

Stitch around raw edges using a 1/4″ seam allowance (yes, yes,  really, right sides out, wrong sides together!).

Turn the corner and sew across the bottom.

Trim corners (raw edges only, please!).

Turn the pillowcase wrong-side out.  Look how nice the BUN looks next to the HOT DOG!

Press the side and bottom seams flat.

Stitch using a 1/2″ seam allowance.

Look at that, you made French Seams…no raw edges!

Turn right side out and press.

See how nicely the MUSTARD lines up?   Did you notice that your condiment made a lovely little flap, too?

It looks good outside and in!

And hey, action shot!

Now, let me know if you’re as addicted to these as I am!  This beauty is number 11 and I know I’ll make more.  In addition to donating to the 1 Million Pillowcase Challenge, they also make great gift bags for quilts!

Need a hardcopy? Printable PDF Tutorial!

Add your Sewhooked-related photos to my flickr group and you might be featured in a future post.



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46 Comments leave one →
  1. Osie permalink
    January 30, 2010 10:55

    Jennifer, This is awesome!!! You did a great job.
    Will pass this on to my niece.

    • January 30, 2010 11:27

      Thanks, Osie! I can’t wait to hear if she tries it!


  2. January 31, 2010 22:08

    Too cute. I’ve seen the challenge. Maybe I’ll make one, too.

  3. Debbie permalink
    February 2, 2010 22:07

    Hey Jennifer! It’s me, Debbie, from Honey Bee, you did it again — awesome job with the pillowcase! I am learning so much from you!! tks!

    • February 2, 2010 22:15

      Thanks, Debbie! I’m totally addicted to making these things!


  4. pren wilcox permalink
    February 3, 2010 15:51

    this was way more clear to me than the other ones i read. thanks for this. well done!

    • February 4, 2010 14:28

      Thanks, Pren! It’s so much fun to do, you know I had to spread the love. :D

  5. Sheila permalink
    February 10, 2010 15:15

    YOU ROCK -as always
    I was having trouble with the hand out
    I need to see it!!

    LOVE IT!!


    aka Witchblade070502

    • February 10, 2010 15:18

      Ah, you’re making me blush!

      I get what you’re saying, I need to see it, too! I had the advantage of having a demonstration. :)


  6. Lesley permalink
    February 17, 2010 11:48

    Thanks so much Jennifer! I’ve made 10 so far and am hooked! Your tutorial was the best! I had written instructions but couldn’t wrap my brain around it until I saw it layed out step by step! All my family and my chosen charities are benefitting from your post and they love the pillow cases and have commented on how well done they are…Thanks again, this is so much fun! I love picking fabric out too! Lesley

    • February 17, 2010 18:13

      Oh, it’s my pleasure! Seeing it done made all the difference for me, too! I’m thrilled to hear how much you’re enjoying it. If you take any photos, I’d love to see. :)


  7. Janis permalink
    August 15, 2010 20:50

    I love making these pillowcases. Will make some as Christmas presents.

  8. Pat L in NY permalink
    January 2, 2011 16:35

    Thanks so much for a wonderful tutorial. I just made my first. I am going to use it as wrapping for a gift quilt. It was so easy!

    • January 2, 2011 19:01

      My pleasure, Pat! This is my absolute favorite way to make a pillowcase. :)


  9. victoria permalink
    January 26, 2011 12:27

    LOL This is the one we call the burrito pillowcase. This is the most awesome pillowcase method in history, no matter what you call it!!! “A rose by any other name still smells as sweet.”

    • January 26, 2011 12:29

      Oh, absolutely! Burritos smell pretty darn good, too! ;)

  10. victoria permalink
    January 26, 2011 12:28

    P.S. This was THE best how-to I’ve seen for this one on-line!

    • January 26, 2011 12:29

      Thanks! That’s really how this came about. I wanted to share with some friends and couldn’t find a good how-to anywhere.

  11. May 3, 2011 11:19

    Thanks for a great tutorial! I used it to finish my pillowcase – I have photos on my blog if you’re interested :)
    (You should be able to click on my name to see them.)

    • May 3, 2011 11:34

      Wow, the pillowcase is amazing! So glad you found the tutorial helpful. It’s one of those word of mouth kinds of things and is too fun and easy not to share!


  12. Laurie permalink
    August 7, 2011 15:14

    I lost my original directions for this pattern. Could not believe when I “googled” “hotdog in a bun pillowcase pattern” that I found this. Your directions are the ones I had but yours are great because of the pictures. Thanks for posting this awesome pattern. I have made over 25 so far. Great to match when making charity quilts too!

    • August 8, 2011 07:24

      Hi Laurie,

      It’s great to hear you found just what you’re looking for! Like I say in my directions, this is definitely not my idea, but it’s too good not to share. I was shown by a friend…who was shown by friend! It’s great to keep something so fun and easy to make going. :)


  13. Shirley permalink
    November 26, 2011 23:39

    You are right, I’m hooked. I’ve completed 6 since last night and have 7 almost complete and still plan to make 5 more for a charity sale on Saturday. I’ve had a demonstration for pillowcases shown in a class but the edge on the casing was unfinished so I was dissapointed. This is exactly what I wanted to do a year ago. Sweet! Thanks-I’ll be sharing too.

    • November 27, 2011 06:02

      I’m so glad this was what you were looking for, Shirley. Good luck with your goal for the charity sale!

  14. Schenley Pilgram permalink
    May 17, 2012 16:45

    Thank you for this tutorial – I had to do quite a bit of math and diagramming to get my paper-pieced block situated properly in my “hot dog,” but once I had that set it flew together, thanks to your clear instructions and photos. I especially loved “(yes, yes, really, right sides out, wrong sides together!)” – I would have totally had trouble with instructions like that in a less-clear tutorial!

  15. May 24, 2012 19:21

    Jennifer, I have heard great things about this pattern, and I am excited to make several of these. I am wondering if you have measurements that you can pass along so that I can make a king size pillow case? Or should I just measure one of my store bought king size pillow cases and make the hot dog (body) fabric longer than your 24″ measurement and do everything else the same way?

    • May 25, 2012 09:56

      I think you it exactly right! I’d measure the body of your king size and extend the body fabric. That should work great!

  16. Victoria permalink
    June 19, 2012 14:00

    That is so funny! I have always called it a burrito. I like the bun, mustard, hotdog one, though.

  17. Kristen Riley permalink
    January 5, 2013 08:23

    Hi- I am new to the “sewing world”, and trying to make pillow cases for my son. Today is the day. I have researched different ideas, and your explanation actually makes sense to me! Thanks- my on concern is the width of my fabric: Will I be ok if the width is only 38? I will let you know how it goes! Thanks again!

    • January 6, 2013 18:30

      38″ would make a bit of a skinny pillowcase. You could definitely add a strip of fabric to the end to get the width you need, otherwise I’m not sure a pillow would fit!

      • Kristen Riley permalink
        January 7, 2013 07:41

        Thanks for the comment, Jennifer. As this was my first sewing project, it was really hard to picture in my head. The pillow came out amazing- as far as the beautiful fabrics coming together- yes, too skinny! But now I know! I was able to play around with the different stitches also, so it was a great learning experience. I also now need to learn to sew a straight line. I will let you know what happens today, as I attempt it again!!!

        • January 7, 2013 19:33

          The more you practice, the better you get! I’m happy to hear that your experience has encouraged you to keep going!

  18. Anne Schock permalink
    February 11, 2013 15:47

    Do you have measurements for a travel size pillow case?

  19. Carolyn Zahn permalink
    March 3, 2013 22:52

    Hi Jennifer, it’s me Carolyn Z,, I’ve taken your wonderful paper piecing classes. Tonight I shared your pillowcase instructions/french seams with my sister in law from Maryland and you made it SEW easy. I heard your location is changing, wherever you go I know you will well because you always help others. I hope I hear from you. Gods blessings

  20. Sharreen Touchet permalink
    March 25, 2013 15:20

    I’ve made many pillowcases for my 7 grandchildren for their birthdays and every holiday, too. My cases are 3/4 yard or 27″ long, with the cuff being 1/4 yard or 9″ long. I do put a contrasting/complimentary flange, prairari point, lace, piping, etc. When I use a flange, it is 2 1/2″ or as little as 1 1/2″ wide. I sew the folded side down using a straight stitch or decorative stitch before I make the French seam.

    I’ve also made many pillowcases for wedding gifts, too!

  21. Nidia permalink
    August 17, 2013 20:48

    I just downloaded the pattern. I have king sized pillowcases as well as standard. Can you tell me how many additional inches I should add to make a king size? Looking forward to making the first.

    • Sharreen Touchet permalink
      August 19, 2013 20:56

      I’ve only made a few King sized pillow cases, myself. I make usually standard size pillowcases for special occasions, seasons, etc.

      When I worked at Cozy Quilt Shop in El Cajon, CA, we’d sell the following to our customers:

      King Size Pillowcase
      1 yard main fabric for each pillowcase

      1/4 to 1/3 yard (same as for any pillow case) for the cuff

      Optional: 2 1/2″ strip folded length wise for decorative contrast/complimentary flange.

      Standard Size Pillowcase:
      3/4 yard main fabric for each pillowcase
      1/4 to 1/3 yard for cuff
      2 1/2 ” strip folded lengthwise for flange

      Pillowcases are a wonderful way to celebrate a special occasion. Wedding, birthdays, seasonal, just because.

      Just tone on tone fabric pillowcases are elegant, using different tone on tones for each part of the case.

      All pillowcases fit the fluffiest pillowcase sold on the market. I’m usually referring to Costco,.


  22. KJill permalink
    November 14, 2013 10:19

    Jennifer, I just wanted to let you know I have been using your directions and directing people to your site for a couple of years now. The photos are just perfect. I have made these for family and friends but more importantly have done them with groups for charity.

    Tomorrow a group of us are going to do a real sweatshop sew in. We have pinners, pressers and sewers all lined up to go. Another gal and I have 113 kits cut and ready to go to make pillowcase for several local social service agencies. Often when they have to take children from homes they have to use garbage bags to collect some things from the home for the children. The case officers can easily carry a number of pillowcases and use them for sacks to carry the children’s things. This group has done them before without the trim and extras but I have convinced them with your directions we can add those extras to really make these special.

    Thank you for taking the time to take photos as you did this and posting them. It makes the directions so much clearer to everyone I have ever done these with.


    • November 15, 2013 10:43

      I’m absolutely thrilled to hear that you’re using my tutorial to such awesome effect! Thank you so much for sharing how you’re using the pillowcases for good. If you happen to have taken pictures during your sew in, I would love to see.


  23. September 15, 2014 04:16

    Nice demo w sharp illustrations! Would like travel size measurements too.

  24. Beverly permalink
    November 19, 2014 07:52

    I have watched several tutorials and yours is one if the best! Actually taught a friend the other day to make these. I like 27″ hot dog with 9″ bun! We are Ohio State fans so made hubby and I each one for football season.

    • November 19, 2014 09:44

      Thanks, Beverly! I’ve altered the size now and then to work with the fabric I have or to make them for bigger (and smaller!) pillows. Sometimes I leave the mustard out…it’s really a versatile project!

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