How-To: Nursing Pillow Cover

by Kelsey Norwood

in Crafts,Tutorials

nursing pillow

Click here for an updated version of this tutorial and pattern.

Like lots of other projects I’ve done lately, I started out very intimidated of this one, I think because of the zipper. I don’t really like doing zippers. But once again, I was totally amazed at how easy this was. The whole thing, from start to finish, took an hour, maybe a little longer. I liked it so much, I’m going to make at least 1 more!¬† (A great sewing tutorial ebook that I recommend if you need help.)

Here’s what you need to make your very own boppy cover:

That’s pretty much it. I found these two pages on a blog called Economical Baby, but it has since been removed so I’m really glad I saved the documents when I found them!

boppy cover tutorial

The instructions are pretty straight forward – the only thing I was confused about was how to tape the pattern pieces together, which I’ve shown here. The zipper goes between the two pieces on the right. The very top piece looks like it’s going to be too big, but once you press each edge under 1/2″, they line up perfectly. It is really a very good pattern.

boppy cover tutorial

My Mom sewed a buckle on my store-bought slipcover, which makes it stay right up around my waist. Now that I have multiple slipcovers, I”m going to sew some velcro onto each slipcover and the strapping so that the waist strap can be interchangeable.

If you’re nursing, a nursing pillow is a must, and now you can make your own slipcovers to go with it! Please let me know if you have questions. Good luck!

(Click to get a great sewing tutorial ebook if needed)


1 Kellie May 5, 2009 at 6:33 am

Thanks again! I need to cover my bobby of 4 years (old that is) before my next gets here, 3 more months, because it is starting to fall apart, and here is the “recipe”. You are amazing!

2 Cindy B. in Montana May 5, 2009 at 8:48 am

Love seeing all your sewing instructions. Sewing things for home is my favorite sort of sewing, although I’m wanting to learn to quilt. I don’t have a sewing machine right now, though, and I wanting one!!

3 Baba May 5, 2009 at 12:00 pm

Very nice! My daughter just made one without a zipper, but this looks pretty simple to do. Thanks!

4 Stephanie May 6, 2009 at 1:07 pm

Spectacular! I just sent this to mom, so she can make one for my little sister. And I will deifnitely be making covers for myself as well. I love being able to have a unique fabric and an easy project. I once tried to make a boppy myself and it was basically a disaster and not worth the money after all he stuffing I used…

5 indymoney May 14, 2009 at 12:19 pm

Thought of buying one from Store. Wow! Its amazing. I’m going to try this for sure. Will update you with my new boppy cover. :)

6 Katrina May 16, 2009 at 1:48 pm

I am by no means an experienced seamstress and I have not sewed anything in many years – this pattern was easy & worked beautifully for me!! I am 30 weeks pregnant with nesting instincts in full swing and I needed a cover for the old boppy pillow I used with my son 2 1/2 years ago. Thanks so much for posting the pattern!!!

7 Tricia May 18, 2009 at 6:39 pm

I so wish I new how to sew your instructions look so easy.
I love the buckle idea that must make it easier for it to stay in place

8 Ely June 2, 2009 at 8:00 am

I have a question – on the pattern that has the zipper portion, why do you show the grey area that says “Bottom portion”? Shouldn’t all the grey areas be hidden by the time we tape all the pieces together?
Thanks for the pattern and your help.

9 Noel June 2, 2009 at 7:08 pm

This is awesome! Thanks so much for hosting this. I’m going to print out the pattern and give it to my mom, who’s the better sewer. :)

10 Noel June 2, 2009 at 7:11 pm

Oh one more thing…I think the pattern and instructions are missing how many yards of fabric are needed. Unless my pregnant brain is just not registering it. :)

11 Kelsey June 2, 2009 at 8:20 pm

I’m so glad you had success with this pattern – it’s important to start with something easy so you can be successful! Way to go!

12 Kelsey June 2, 2009 at 8:22 pm

The reason I showed a picture of the pattern is because I thought the same thing and was really confused! I had to think long and hard about how everything would work before I cut out my fabric and started sewing. That part just shouldn’t be grey, I guess, because it does show when everything is taped together.

13 Kelsey June 2, 2009 at 8:23 pm

You need about 1 1/4 yards, if I remember correctly. Maybe 1 3/8 just to be safe…I’ll let you know for sure when I make it again.

14 Amy H. June 19, 2009 at 7:38 pm

Thanks for the great pattern. I actually found a dark blue boppy pillow, practically new for $5. However, even though I am having a boy I wasn’t fond of the pattern. For the slipcover I want the biggest complaint is how light/transparent it seemed if put over a darker color boppy. It’s the Safari Boppy Slipcover from Target/Amazon. I actually sew quite a bit, so I took this pattern and omitted the zipper. I took some muslin I had, doubled it up, sewed everything together, and then slip stitched it closed. (Also, where the zipper would normally go, instead of folding under a 1/2 inch, I just serged the edges with my Serger). I have included some pics:

I have a 7 year old daughter, so she is really excited. She was the first to pick out a outfit for the new baby. She decided a onesie with lions, from there it’s been jungle and safari themed everything.

Thanks again for posting this!

15 Amanda July 20, 2009 at 8:44 pm

Could a person use this same pattern and omit the zipper to make the pillow part of the boppy? Or would that need to be smaller? Boppies are so expensive, so I would like to make one myself.

16 Kelsey July 21, 2009 at 11:13 am

You could, although I think someone else commented and said they tried to make one and it ended up being more expensive than buying a boppy. It would take a lot of good quality batting. If you did use this pattern for the actual pillow, I would take a larger seam, maybe 1″ instead of 1/4″. Let me know how it works out!

17 Gena July 30, 2009 at 7:40 pm

I’m probably just missing this, but what size zipper does this need? I’m new to zippers, hope this works out well in one try. Thanks for posting!!!!!!!

18 Allison September 5, 2009 at 11:04 pm

Thanks for rescuing this pattern from oblivion! I had seen it before a couple of years back but never made it and when I went looking for it the blog was gone. It is the best FREE Boppy cover pattern out there.

I would recommend using the above pictures to help tape together the pieces as shown.

Also, to make your cover lay nicely -use pinking shears after you finish each seam, press and consider stitching in the ditch around the entire perimeter. This will help alleviate the rumpled look once you put in on your Boppy. (For those who are “stitching-in-the ditch challenged” I’d recommend using a zig-zag to straddle the seam.)

19 Jill Poss September 21, 2009 at 7:11 am

How do you make a boppy slip cover without a zipper – sounds good and easy . . . Thanks for your help.

Jill Poss

20 Jessica September 22, 2009 at 11:45 am

I’m thinking of doing one without a zipper … just using this pattern, but leaving a little extra fabric where the zipper would be instead of using a zipper, so it’s just a big pocket.

21 Kelsey September 22, 2009 at 10:31 pm

Someone else just made a comment about doing it that way – she said she was going to try to overlap the fabric a bit where the zipper would go to make it like a big pocket, kind of like how pillow shams are done. It would totally work! But doing a zipper is probably lots easier…

22 Michele November 9, 2009 at 5:17 pm

I cut all the pieces as instructed but my zipper is too long. Did I do something wrong? I got the 24″ zipper as instructed.

23 Sarah December 15, 2009 at 6:26 pm

Thanks for the tutorial! I made one for my sister-in-law and posted it on my blog:

24 viviana February 5, 2010 at 2:04 pm

hi! I’m going to try this one for a friend, but I am worried (and can’t figure out with just the pics) if the zipper is not being dangerous for the baby, when sewing, is there a piece of fabric covering it?
sorry, but as I’m not an english native speaker, find it hard reading and realising how it will turn out
thanks in advance

25 Chanthida February 27, 2010 at 1:33 pm

Thank you for sharing the Boppy pattern. I am 7+1/2 months pregnant. I am trying to get the baby stuff ready and come across this. So I decided to make one myself instead of buying it. It turned out great. Love the pattern. I use it to make both Boppy body and cover. The only one change I made is that I put the zipper on the top seam instead of the back of the Boppy. It’s a little tricky, but it work out great.

You can check the one I made at

Thanks again!!!! :-D

26 Chanthida February 27, 2010 at 1:38 pm

Thank you for sharing. :-)

27 Kent March 28, 2010 at 2:15 pm

Thanks for posting the picture of the pattern! I was so confused trying to match all the pieces up! I was about to give up, then found your site. Thanks!! My slip cover turned out really cute :o)

28 Mamie April 12, 2010 at 9:37 am

I am so going to try this – I cannot wait to head out to the fabric store to find something cute! Thanks for posting this!

29 Otokajo May 22, 2010 at 10:38 pm

In place of the zipper, I just sewed an extra piece of fabric overhanging where the zipper should go. I am a total novice at sewing, but it turned out pretty well with that modification. I can easily tuck the pillow in the cover and it doesn’t show at all. I might secure it with velcro or something else later on but for now it seems okay.

30 Janelle June 28, 2010 at 9:00 am

This is just what I needed! It’s so easy to find boppies at yard sales but they are often in great need of a cover! This will come in handy!

31 Star @ A Load Of Craft July 13, 2010 at 10:54 am

Hey thanks so much for saving that pattern and sharing your how-to! I linked to you in my post here:

-Star @ A Load Of Craft

32 Linda July 13, 2010 at 7:15 pm

Thank you so much for the boppy slip cover pattern! The pattern was very easy to use and the slip cover looked so professional. I had to show it off and now I have requests to make more! A picture will be posted on my web site…

33 Katie Jones July 15, 2010 at 6:54 pm

Thanks so much for the Boppy Cover how-to! I made a cover today in about an hour – and it was so great to have your picture and the pattern. I linked to your blog in my blog post about my Boppy Cover:

Thanks again!

34 Babs July 22, 2010 at 8:08 pm

I put the pattern together and completed my first slip cover..way to small I’m not sure how to put the pattern pieces together correctly with the grey areas I’m obviously confused any suggestions from anyone would be very much appreciated, it’s been decades since I’ve tried to do a sewing project but I know I’m capable with a little help from some new friends. :))

35 Kelsey July 22, 2010 at 10:39 pm


I guess the best advice I can give is to go by the picture I took of the patterns laid out on the table. Hopefully that helps! It was kind of tricky and if the picture isn’t enough help, I would ask a sewing friend who can help you in person. Good luck!

36 Jill August 23, 2010 at 4:35 pm

Awesome! Thanks so much!

37 Janelle October 11, 2010 at 7:31 pm

Made this for my coming baby and LOVE how it turned out! It was super simple to make too. Thanks for the great tutorial!

38 Emma December 10, 2010 at 7:55 pm

I used the same boppy pattern a few years ago but can’t find what I had printed anywhere. And I am having problems opening up the document, is there a way that you could email it to me? Thank you so much!

39 Val February 12, 2011 at 12:26 am

Thank you so much for this pattern and tutorial. I have misplaced my boppy pillow a few years ago and pregnant again. My baby is due in 3 weeks and was searching for a pattern and was able to use this cover to make a pillow and cover from it. I can’t thank you enough. It turned out so great, I plan on making more covers for my new pillow. I can’t wait to use it on my new baby. Thank you again!

40 Brandy March 31, 2011 at 2:14 pm

Thanks so much for the great pattern! I’m excited to try it. I’m not sure how much fabric I need to get? Did I miss that somewhere?

41 Yasmine H. May 24, 2011 at 6:42 am

Great instructions! Does anyone know about how many yards of fabric I’ll need to buy to do this project?

42 Kelsey July 27, 2011 at 8:21 am

I can’t remember exactly, but I know 1 1/2 yards will be plenty. I think it was more like 1 1/4 or 1 1/3 exactly, but having a little extra is always better…

43 Mae September 22, 2011 at 11:13 pm

I desperately need to make a new boppy cover for mine. The one I have I bought and it’s totally worn out after nursing 2.1 babies on it. And, it’s really flat. Any suggestions how I could fluff it up?

44 Joan McKinzey November 13, 2011 at 11:26 am

Velcro is a lovely alternative to zippers for a cover you want to remove for washing!

45 Brenda January 13, 2012 at 8:01 am

This may be a silly question, but when you printed the pattern did you use just regular 8 1/2 x 11 paper or does it require a larger size so that it will fit the boppy. I am going to try and make this over the weekend. It looks easy and fun! Thanks so much for the pattern!

46 Kelsey January 23, 2012 at 10:23 pm

I just used regular 8 1/2 x 11 paper. Good luck!

47 Emma January 24, 2012 at 7:38 am

I want to use the pattern to make the pillow as well. For those of you who have done these, how much smaller did you make the pattern?? Any help would be gratefully received!!

48 shelley January 24, 2012 at 9:13 pm

Am I the only one that this pattern was too big for their boppy? I would suggest a larger seam allowance than 1/4in. I am really disappointed. I spent a lot of time taking it up, but I am NOT taking the zipper out to fix it completely. It just looks sort of sloppy and not very tailored to fit and I used expensive fabric:( I pieced the pattern together correctly, it is just too big.

49 Kelsey January 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Shelley, I’m so sorry to hear it didn’t work out! And that’s weird…mine was just the right size. Do you have a “Boppy” brand boppy? Is it kind of flat? I wonder if maybe one of those two things would make a difference…I’m so sorry you spent all the time on it and were disappointed. That’s the worst…

50 cori January 29, 2012 at 2:58 pm

I just finished 3 boppy covers for my granddaughter, they came out nice, I just hope they fit. The only thing is that a 24 inch zipper is too long, I used a 22 and it was perfect.

51 applemama February 17, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Should I click “scale to fit” on my print options? or type in 100% on scale??

52 Amy February 23, 2012 at 2:18 pm

@AppleMama, always print at 100% when you’re printing patterns from the ‘net.

53 Polly @ Helping Little Hands February 25, 2012 at 7:48 pm

Thanks so much for the pattern! Just made one and it turned out great. Just for the inside curve, I ended up using more like a 3/4+ inch seam allowance and then trimming and clipping the curve, so I could get a little tighter fit for my pillow…but my pillows been through one kid already, so the sizing might be a little off on it. Otherwise your pattern fit perfectly!

54 Kristin February 27, 2012 at 7:43 am

When printing the pattern for the boppy slip cover, will they print out at the actual finished size to fit the boppy??

55 Lynn March 5, 2012 at 7:37 am

I have tried to print out the boppy covers instructions and pattern with no success. Is there any way I can get this as I would like to make it for my new granddaughter. Thanks Lynn

56 mrsgbv March 15, 2012 at 8:11 pm

thanks for sharing!!!

57 carolyn vijaytha March 26, 2012 at 10:12 pm

thanks u a lot for sharing ur bobby pillow pattern….. thanks…

58 Ellen April 3, 2012 at 6:01 am

Thank you so much for the pattern. It was a perfect find on the internet, and saved me so much time to try and reproduce it myself!

59 Teri April 14, 2012 at 8:33 pm

I am taking care of my 3mo old nephew & when my sis forgets to bring the “boppy” it’s rough! Such a wonderful pillow for feeding a small one. We were in a consignment shop today & I luckily found a clean used boppy for 9.00 (hey girls, these shops are priceless when pinching pennies- lots of good stuff) Well, I started looking for covers and then decided to look for instructions. What a great thing to find this blog! Thanks so much for sharing this pattern, going to make one tomorrow!

60 Vicky May 2, 2012 at 10:10 am

Thanks so much for your wonderful pattern and directions! I’m a first time grandmother and made this for my soon to be granddaughter. I made this in under an hour. Can’t wait to make more!

61 crystal May 9, 2012 at 8:40 pm

sure im missing this as well, with a baby in the nicu and 3 others ages 4 and under have me running on like oh 2 hrs of sleep so please done laugh…… how much fabric do i need? i see the size of zipper just no yardage, thanks!

~sleep deprived momma!

62 Kelsey May 14, 2012 at 8:57 pm

IT’s about 1 1/3 yards. I’ll have to add that, sorry!

63 kinsley June 11, 2012 at 11:37 am

Thanks for linking up the pattern and tutorial! this is baby #3, and Ive learned that buying used is the way to go! BUT, sometimes the shape of covers is not so pleasing, so I’m giving my 8$ -secondhand- store -boppy a new look! I just bought my supplies, (5$ total) and am going to make this first try at sewing a zipper *EEEK* :-)

64 Becky June 28, 2012 at 7:27 pm

I have a boppy brand but it turned out too big. I was able to Taylor it but I think I taped too big, pattern was difficult to know where to tape and cut. Putting the pieces together was easy.

65 Rebecka T July 8, 2012 at 5:33 pm


I am trying to put the pattern together and when I put the 3 piece on the bottom zipper portion side I can’t get the lines to line up without any gray showing. Am I doing something wrong? or is it ok if there is some gray showing between the 3 and the 4 pieces? please help asap!

66 Bronni October 25, 2012 at 10:56 am

I am so glad you saved this! I made this exact one, which is great, and I need to make another one! I, too, had a hard time with the pieces!

67 Vanessa January 1, 2013 at 2:14 pm

Did you perhaps find the original on It sounds awfully similar to “Economical Baby” and I found a pattern there that looks the exact same as yours. Just a thought.

68 Kelsey Norwood January 1, 2013 at 4:18 pm

I have no idea! The blog I found it on just doesn’t exist anymore, it doesn’t redirect traffic to a new page so…I’m not sure!

69 Aubry May 12, 2013 at 7:47 am

The 24 inch zipper is too long…how do I sew it in? Do I trim it? Or just it just get tucked in? Help!??!?!? Do I have to buy a shorter one?

70 Kelsey Norwood May 12, 2013 at 7:52 am

Sew it in and then cut off the extra. Sew over the zipper teeth a few times to make sure it’s secure before you snip. That’s what I usually do!

71 Aubry May 13, 2013 at 10:17 am

Thx! Which end to I line the fabric up with? And which end do I snip???

72 Helen January 12, 2014 at 2:47 pm

I made it but just used parts 1-6 and cut on the folded edge for both sides of my boppy would be the same and then just stuffed it with regular pillow stuffing and it looks great!

73 Pamela February 28, 2014 at 8:55 pm

Do you know the approx. size of zipper to use? Especially if it needs cut…

74 Pat McMahon March 18, 2014 at 6:36 am

I have the task of making Boppy covers in Naugahyde for the local children’s hospital. I am wondering if I could use fabric glue instead of stitching the pieces together. Has anyone tried this? I also do not know about installing a zipper in Naugahyde.

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