How to Turn a Maritime Flag Into a Beachy-Chic Pillow

These easy-to-sew DIY throw pillows are a splashy way to add a little nautical style to any outdoor space.

We love the bold graphic look of vintage maritime flags! These simple straight stitch DIY throw pillows are a splashy way to add a little nautical style to any space.

DIY Maritime Flag Pillow

We love the bold graphic look of vintage maritime flags! These simple straight stitch DIY throw pillows are a splashy way to add a little nautical style to any space.

Photo by: © Rustic White Photography, LLC

© Rustic White Photography, LLC

Materials Needed

  • 24” x 24” outdoor-rated pillow insert
  • rectangular maritime signal flag
  • outdoor fabric in coordinating color (for pillow back)
  • sewing machine
  • needle and thread
  • iron
  • hook-and-loop tape (Velcro)
  • scissors
  • tape measure
  • pen
  • fabric glue
  • buttons

Cut Outdoor Fabric

Place the fabric face down on your work surface. Measure and mark your fabric 27" across to accommodate the 24" pillow insert; the extra 3" allows for an 1-1/2" inseam on each side of the insert (Images 1 and 2). Cut out.  

Cut Flag

Lay the flag face down on your work surface (Image 1). Being sure to center the flag's design, measure and mark the fabric at 27" and at 33" — this additional 6" on one side will be used to create a flap for the pillow. The flap will make it easy to remove the insert before laundering the pillow cover. Cut the flag to the proper dimensions (Image 2).

Hem Flag Edge

Fold, then iron a hem to the flag's flap edge (Image 1). Sew it in place, using a straight stitch (Image 2).

Hem Outdoor Fabric Edge

Next, fold and iron a hem on the outdoor fabric which will be the pillow cover's backside (Image 1). Using a straight stitch, hem the coordinating edges (Image 2).

Pin Together

Once hemmed, place the two pieces of fabric together. Align the flag and the backing fabric, facing together and pin in place.  

Sew Together

Leaving a 1" inseam, sew the three raw edges together (Image 1). Trim excess material (Image 2), then turn the pillow case inside out and iron (Image 3).

Step 5- Pin Together
Once hemmed, place the two pieces of fabric together. Align the flag and the backing fabric, facing together so that the hemmed edges are lined up. Pin in place.

DIY Maritime Flag Pillow

Step 5- Pin Together Once hemmed, place the two pieces of fabric together. Align the flag and the backing fabric, facing together so that the hemmed edges are lined up. Pin in place.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Contour Flap Edges

Fold the edges of the pillow flap inward about an inch and secure with a bead of fabric glue. Press down for a few seconds, then release.

Add Velcro

Position the hook-and-loop tape every 5 to 6 inches to ensure that the pillow cover will stay in place when the flap is closed.

Fold the edges of the pillow flap inward about an inch and secure with a bead of fabric glue. Press down for a few seconds, then release.

DIY Maritime Flag Pillow

Fold the edges of the pillow flap inward about an inch and secure with a bead of fabric glue. Press down for a few seconds, then release.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Add Buttons

Using a needle and white thread, stitch a few buttons onto the flap for a little extra decorative flair. 

Position the hook and loop tape every 5 or 6 inches, so that the pillow cover will stay in place when the flap is closed.

DIY Maritime Flag Pillow

Position the hook and loop tape every 5 or 6 inches, so that the pillow cover will stay in place when the flap is closed.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

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