Sep 24, 2018

Pumpkin Pillowcase Costume

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Make this adorable costume for the little pumpkin in your life. Easily stitch this with two pillowcases. We’ll explore appliqué with our free template! Download template and printable instructions.


  • 2 Pillowcases for shell and lining both orange and the same-size
  • Orange and Black Madeira Aerofil Thread
  • Optional: Madeira Glow-in-the-Dark Thread for appliqué instead of black
  • Free Face Template at end of instructions & Baby Lock Fusible Appliqué Stabilizer
  • Black fabric scraps for appliqué
  • Polyester Fiberfill (small bag) to stuff the pumpkin
  • 1-1/2” Ribbon for straps (see step 8 for amount)
  • 3/8” Elastic (measure around both legs and add extra inches to find length)


  • Baby Lock Sewing Machine


  1. Press pillowcases and lay them out flat one on top of the other and lined up exactly in the same direction.

    1. Cut off the short closed end on both pillowcases. This will be the top edge of your costume while the pillowcase hems will serve as the hem of the costume.

    2. To cut the exact length first measure your child from clavicle to where you’d like the pumpkin to be hemmed.

    3. Add about 3-1/2” to that measurement to account for the added bulk of stuffing and the ribbon casing at the top.

  2. To cut armholes measure and mark 3-4” inward and 5-6” down. Then mark a curve between the two marks. Cut out armholes through all layers.

  3. Now is a great time to appliqué. Print the template and stick onto the slick side of a cut and flattened 8.5” x 11” piece of Baby Lock Fusible Appliqué Stabilizer.

    1. Cut out the printed template and fuse it to back side of the fabric.

    2. When placing your face pieces make sure the top of the eyes are about 5” down from the top edge of the pillowcase.

    3. Then stitch a blanket stitch around the entire shape. We recommend using the Baby Lock Open Toe Foot for this.

  4. After the pumpkin face is appliquéd it’s time to stitch the armholes. Insert one pillowcase inside the other with pretty sides together.

    1. Pin and stitch a 1/2” seam allowance along the U-shaped armholes. Clip curves turn right side out push the lining inside the outer shell and press armholes.

  5. To create the elastic casing place the two layers of the hem together evenly lining up your side seams. Stitch the layers together 3/4” up from the lower edge and all around.

    1. Then stitch 1/8” away from the lower edge leaving a 2” opening. Place a safety pin on your elastic and insert through the casing. Pin the ends together.

    2. TIP: I like to stitch the opening closed at the very end after fitting to the child because you can pull the elastic tighter if needed

  6. Press down the top edges in front and back a 1/4” (keeping both layers together) and then press down another 1”.

    1. Then open up your pressed edges and lightly stuff the pumpkin in between the outer shell and inner lining layers in front and back and slightly in the sides if desired.

    2. Try it on the child to gauge what works. It’s easier to do the pressing before you stuff it.

  7. Line up your pressing and fold it back under re-pressing creases if needed. Stitch closely to the casing edges in front and back.

  8. Insert ribbon. You can create a bow on one shoulder by lacing about 50” through the front and back casing or use two ribbons about 40” each and tie bows on each shoulder.

    1. Cut ribbon ends at an angle and finish with a fray check.

    2. You can also use about 40” of black ribbon to run through the front and back and stitch one seam. Don’t forget to finish the seam edge so it doesn’t fray.

  9. Try the costume on the child adjust elastic if needed and stitch elastic casing opening closed. And you’re done!

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