How to Make Your Own Accent Pillows

Embellish basic pillow covers with pom-poms, trim, or a wash of color.

Mike Garten

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Need to spruce up your couch or bed? You can easily add extra embellishments to plain pillow covers that you probably already own. Here's how:

1. Create a Watercolor Effect

What you'll need:

  • Rit Dye in royal blue ($8, .com)
  • Paintbrush ($4, .com)


    1. Place a sheet of wax paper inside a white cotton teaspoon until you achieve pillow cover (this will help prevent paint from seeping through), then lay it flat on your work surface.
    2. In a glass bowl, mix a teaspoon of water with a half cup of fabric dye. Test the color on an old T-shirt or a paper towel and add water by the teaspoon until you achieve the desired concentration.
    3. Wet one side of the pillow with a clean paintbrush. Dip in color and lightly paint left to right across the fabric. To make an area darker, go back over your brushstrokes with another coat of paint.
    4. Let dry completely, then repeat on the other side.

      2. Add Tons of Texture

      What you'll need:

      • Pom-poms ($13, .com)
      • Fabric glue ($7, .com)


        1. Lay a cotton, canvas, or velvet pillow cover flat on your work surface.
        2. For pom-poms: Arrange in clusters of three, make neat rows, or tack one to each corner as an accent.
        3. For tassel or pom-pom trim: Make vertical or horizontal stripes, or create a border around the perimeter.
        4. Use fabric glue to secure embellishments in place; let dry.

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