French seams don’t have a raw, bare border. The seam is double-sewn, so the inside seam edges are encased inside another seam. After you have sewn the first seam, you turn the object inside out and enclose the raw edges of the first seam inside the second seam. This neatens up the seam and maintains the cloth from pulling apart at the seams during washing and use.
Fluff the pillow and lay it on a level surface for quantifying. Assess the length of the pillow, and write that down to a piece of paper. Wrap the pillow using a fabric measuring tape completely, without squishing it, to ascertain its entire width. Divide this number by 2 to figure out the pillowcase’s width. Add 1 1/2 inches to the width measurement for the French seams, along with 1 1/4 inch for the span to permit for 2 3/8 seams along with a 1/2-inch hem.
Move the Measurements
Transfer these measurements to the desired fabric, ideally a combed cotton, American Pima or Egyptian cotton material. If you’re planning to go to the issue of a French-seamed pillowcase, utilize the best quality sheet material available. You may gently mark the dimensions on the cloth or place pins along the dimensions to work as a guide for cutting lines. Or you may create a pattern out of butcher block paper or sewing pattern tracing paper that you pin to the fabric for a guideline to follow.
Fabric Cutting and Sewing
Cut two pieces in the fabric for the front and rear of this pillowcase. Set the proper sides facing and pin the pillowcase together. Sew a straight seam across the cloth border, 3/8 of an inch wide. Reduce the edge or seam allowance to 1/8 inch past the sewn stitches. Turn the material inside out, so the proper sides are now on the interior of the pillowcase. Press the seam so that its edge goes to one side or the other. It doesn’t matter, but you want the seam as flat as possible. Press the seam all over the border of the cloth until it’s flat.
Final French Seam
Pin the sewn edge with each other to maintain the seam from moving when you sew. Sew another seam 3/8 inch in from the border for the entire pillowcase. This second seam catches the first inside it to prevent any raw seam edges inside the pillowcase. It also prevents the material from fraying. After creating the second seam, iron that the pillowcase again to flatten the seam. Finish by sewing a 1/2-inch hem around the open end of the pillowcase.