fancy sequin pillow {tutorial}

This season is filled with shiny sequins. Have you noticed? They’re on sweaters, bags, curtains and pillows.  It’s a trend I’m really liking and have been wanting to add a little bit of sparkle in the form of sequins in our home.


My aunt was wearing a sequin tank top on Thanksgiving and she gave me the brilliant idea to cut apart a tank and use it to make pillows. Smart, right? So I took her advice and here’s how I did it:



:: sequin tank top {like this one from Old Navy in size XXL for maximum fabric}

:: fabric for back {I used an oatmeal colored linen}

:: pillow form or two {mine are 12×18}

:: scissors, pins, thread, sewing machine

STEP ONE: cut apart the tank at the seams


STEP TWO: fold remaining fabric in half and cut for two equal pieces



STEP THREE: cut out back material and pin right sides together


Because the tank is made of stretchy jersey, I pulled slightly to the edges while pinning and sewing

STEP FOUR: straight stitch pillow making sure to leave an opening in the bottom


Backstitch several times at each opening to help hold the seams when stuffing with the pillow insert

STEP FIVE: turn right side out



The pillow is a little wonky looking on its own, but all straightened out when the pillow form was added.

STEP SIX: hand stitch close


The sparkle is so fun!



If you are new to sewing, making pillows is one of the easiest projects to begin with. Just four straight stitches and you’re done! Plus, if you use inexpensive fabric {like a cut apart tank top} little harm is done if it’s a total flop. But, of course, it won’t be.

So here’s to fancy sequins and beginner sewing skills.

Will you be pillow-making this weekend?

31 Responses to fancy sequin pillow {tutorial}

  1. Kara November 2, 2014 at 8:53 am #

    Hi! I LOVE this tutorial and I never thought about using a shirt – brilliant! Thanks for sharing! I’m wondering what needle you used. I tried adjusting a sequin top a few New Year’s Eves ago and my machine was like, “wwwwhhhhat are you doing to me?” I think I ended up breaking the needle. : / I’d love the advice. :)

    • emily November 3, 2014 at 11:36 am #

      I didn’t use a special needle – but you could try using one for jersey knits. Or maybe look for a shirt with plastic sequins instead of metal ones.

  2. Kim January 2, 2013 at 11:50 am #

    Where is the best place to buy pillow inserts? I love, love you pillows!!

    • emily January 2, 2013 at 8:36 pm #

      I like IKEA for down inserts. They have a limited selection of sizes, but a few good basics.

  3. Lori Ann December 29, 2012 at 10:08 am #

    Where did you find that awesome table between your chairs? Oh, and my daughter will be getting a sparkly pillow for her bed! Thanks!

  4. Kayla December 20, 2012 at 10:10 am #

    These turned out so cute!!! I love sparkles & love that you paired it with linen, even better!! LOVE THEM!

  5. Heather December 16, 2012 at 2:10 pm #

    Fabulous repurposing!!! They are beautiful.

  6. Christa @ BrownSugarToast December 15, 2012 at 7:12 pm #

    LOVE these!!! Someone gave me a sequin shirt that has a teeny hole in it. great gift, right? ;) lol! so I usually just wear it with a sweater – ha! but I may just have to recycle it into a pillow cover! Thanks!!

  7. Kim M. December 15, 2012 at 11:53 am #

    LOVE the pillows!!! And your striped throw blanket!!! Where is the blanket from? Thanks so much. Merry Christmas!!!

    • emily December 16, 2012 at 9:07 pm #

      The blanket is from IKEA.

  8. Tania December 15, 2012 at 10:02 am #

    This is AWESOME. Love the idea of cutting up the tank. My daughter is turning 5 next month and would absolutely LOVE a pink sequin pillow. Thanks for sharing this.

  9. Laura F. December 14, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

    Now I know what to do with my tank, when I get tired of it. I have that very same one. Lovely pillow!

  10. sara December 14, 2012 at 1:12 pm #

    Perfect timing! I was just in Target last night and saw a beautiful aqua colored sequin tank and thought, I’d love to make this into a pillow. But then I kept on walking since I don’t need another project right now. But you make it look so simple so now I’m headed back to Target!

  11. Jill M. December 14, 2012 at 12:37 pm #

    I LOVE your chairs! Where did you get them from? I have been looking for chairs just like that for my living room.

    • emily December 16, 2012 at 9:07 pm #

      The chairs are from Ethan Allen. We purchased them four years ago {or so} and they have worn beautifully!

      • Jill M. December 17, 2012 at 7:12 pm #

        Thank you so much for the response, I will check them out.

  12. Aimee Jongejan December 14, 2012 at 10:08 am #

    You’re killing me!!! Running to Old Navy NOW!!!

  13. Leilani December 14, 2012 at 10:07 am #

    I would need to buy TWO tanks. One to wear and one to pillow-ize. :)

  14. Stacey December 14, 2012 at 9:54 am #

    Wow! What a great idea. You make me want to buy a sewing machine and learn to sew!

  15. Missy G. December 14, 2012 at 9:41 am #

    I LOVE IT!!

  16. amber P December 14, 2012 at 9:40 am #

    that’s such a great idea! they turned out beautiful!

  17. Jessica @ Dear Emmeline December 14, 2012 at 8:45 am #

    gorgeous!! love all the glitter and glimmer this year too! these are perfect!

  18. Jennifer@The Chronicles of Home December 14, 2012 at 8:39 am #

    Great idea, Emily. Love this project!

  19. Lynda December 14, 2012 at 7:52 am #

    Seriously SMART! I knew the second I saw the pattern what you used – I just purchased some of those tanks for gifts, and was planning on going back to Old Navy today – I’m totally inspired!

  20. Jill December 14, 2012 at 7:34 am #

    Absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!!! Great idea – great project!! I’ll be checking out the racks, and even the clearance items, next time I’m in Old Navy. Great tip for perfect pillow fabric! :)

  21. breanne December 14, 2012 at 7:25 am #

    LOVE these pillows. Yes I will be making them this weekend! Thank you for the great idea.

  22. Amy @ a new old house December 14, 2012 at 6:44 am #

    I love the sequins, they’re so festive!

    I just made a pillow from a wool tank top that had beadwork… that was easy because the wool pretty much hid the stitches.

    I think I might now be confident enough to try something a little fancier like this!

  23. Shelley December 14, 2012 at 6:34 am #

    These are adorable & such a great idea! LOVE THEM!!!

  24. Melissa December 14, 2012 at 6:33 am #

    What a great idea! I saw those tank tops at Old Navy on sale the other day. Now I need to make a trip.

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