Place Mats to Pillows, Pottery Barn Style for Less.

Posted on Dec 5, 2013

Pottery Barn pillows on bed


Pottery Barn is consistently one of my top home decorating inspirations because they do a magnificent job with styling, color combinations and fabric patterns.  I’m in there all the time enjoying the eye candy and gathering ideas.

I had been thinking about buying an expensive pillow when I noticed that the place-mats in the same pattern were double sided; meaning they are made from two pieces of fabric sewn together rather than being made of just one piece with the edges turned under.  That’s when inspiration hit and I realized I could easily turn those darling printed place-mats into great stylish pillows.


Blue Pottery Barn Pillow


Not being one for to turn down 3/4 of the work being already complete, I snapped up a few of Pottery Barn’s  place-mats for new pillows. It cost far less that half what a regular Pottery Barn pillow would ($7.95 vs. $50+) and I still got their exclusive prints to use in my home. Did I mention it’s easy and most of the work is already done for you?  Best of all, they can be removed and replaced with the seasons or as the whim hits you!

“I feel like you can never have enough whimsical throw pillows in your house, in your life. My husband probably disagrees.”

Busy Philipps

I recently saw these darling Christmas place mats and new I had to turn them into pillows.  I bought two of the polka-dot mats and one with the crewel-work Santa for decorating my bed.  The two polka dot pillows almost look like a body pillow behind the Santa pillow and I love how great they all look against the white bedding.  They’re so festive and happy.


red Pottery Barn place mats



The size is obviously smaller than the regular square pillows Pottery Barn sells (12 ” x18″ ) which is perfect for accent pillows and for lumbar support.  I like to use them on a cozy chair to support my lower back while I’m cuddled up reading a book and they’re perfect to add a pop of pattern and color to a solid sofa without having to be committed to a pattern long term.

Don’t see a pattern you like at Pottery Barn.  No problem.  Pier One Imports and Target also carry place mats that are double sided and work just as well as pillows for as little as $3.99 each.

Any two-sided place mat is easily turned into stylish pillows with just some stuffing and a zipper.

Here’s how to do it:


Step by step Pottery Barn pillow pics 800 size


Use a seam ripper to open the bottom seam of the place mat.  This is the long side closest to the tag.  If there’s no obvious top or bottom to the print, either long side will do.

Pin an 18″ zipper onto one side of the open pillow seam, both the zipper and the pillow fabric right sides up. and sew with zipper foot attached to your machine or stitch by hand. Just go straight from the top to the bottom.

Open the zipper and pin the other side of the zipper to the other side of the open seam on the place-mat (right sides up again) and stitch as above.

Stuff with an existing pillow that fits inside or use batting to fill the pillow.

You’re Done!!!


Pottery Barn pillows on bed


How easy was that?!  Now you have a stylish, great looking custom Pottery Barn pillow for 1/3 the price!  Even better, if you get tired of the pattern or like to change your pillows with the seasons or holidays, simply buy a new place mat and make a new cover!

I’d love to see your new pillows.  Send photos to


More Inspiration:

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  1. This is such a fantastic idea!
    Thanks for sharing!

    • What a great idea…The search for unique placemats begins!

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