How to make a Lap Desk out of a Pillowcase

It is Monthly Challenge time again! (Second Wednesday of each month) For March, we are tackling projects using plain, white pillowcases. Here’s my tutorial for How to make a Lap Desk out of a Pillowcase!

With all of the hustle and bustle that’s been going on with me, I knew I needed an option to comfortably work in a few other areas of the house. We had a cold front move in, which made the house FRIGID, so I’ve been trying to work from the coffee table with LB close-by and the heat pump above us, but let’s face it – coffee table desks are not the most comfy.

So I decided it was a great opportunity to take this monthly challenge item – a white pillowcase – and create a cute little lap desk so I can work on the couch or upstairs in bed!

Here are the supplies I used:

You guys…this is a NO SEW method!! As I was tackling this challenge, we were knee deep in painting and drywall in the basement studio, so I didn’t want to have to haul my sewing machine out in the middle of all that mess. I was determined to come up with a no sew method.  I still wanted it to look like a nice box pleat though….so that’s why I used foam instead of filler!

Here’s what I came up with. First, I measured the rough size of my laptop on my foam, drew a line with a marker and used a serrated kitchen knife to cut it out.

Then I ironed my pillowcase and cut it down all three seams. You only need to use one side of your pillowcase, so you could keep the other piece to make a second laptop desk or use it for something else 🙂

The next part is fairly simple. I basically wrapped my foam with my pillowcase fabric. The first fold-over, I used fabric fusion glue to adhere the fabric directly to the foam. You HAVE TO WORK QUICKLY because the glue really really really really sticks to the foam and if you mess up, you’ll have to cut it away with your scissors.

Let that dry and then pull the next side over and secure with sewing pins. Fold up the edges like a present and make sure you can pull the fabric onto the top because that will all get covered up by your desk anyway. Glue with fabric fusion and pin it to keep it in place. Let it dry like that for about an hour.

Then remove your pins and add glue to the top edge that wasn’t glued down. I saved this part for last in case I needed to tighten things up a bit. I wanted to have slack to do that. If yours looks okay, you can just leave it unglued.

This challenge was all about using a white pillowcase – but it felt really blah to me! I wanted some colour and I was hoping to be able to cover up those ugly side folds in my fabric.

So I grabbed some gorgeous scrap remnant fabric from my stash. I’ve had this bright floral for a while and I was just waiting for the right opportunity to use it. I cut it into two strips, each about 2 inches wider than my foam. I ironed each strip and used my fabric fusion (again) to hem the long sides (leaving the short ends un-hemmed for now.)

Note: If it wasn’t a remnant, I would have used one long piece so save myself from having a second seam. But my remnant wasn’t long enough to wrap all the way around the perimeter of my desk.

Then I pinned and glued it all around the edges of my lap desk to make sure it covered all the ugly. While that was drying, I cut down my 1/4 inch plywood to size and stained it using my favorite stain wipes!

Once that was dry, I attached it to my lap desk pillow using hot glue (and a few dabs of Gorilla glue in the centre to give it some good hold.) The last step was to use my Silhouette to cut out ‘hustle’ and stick it to the bottom corner just for some pizzazz 🙂

I can’t believe how this turned out! I’m so happy with it 🙂 I do try to keep work out of the playroom, but sometimes when LB is napping, I like to lie down here and do some work. 

This is totally an easy DIY project that anyone can do. I think it would actually be fun to make on a girls craft and wine night, don’t you?!

Alright, you know the deal by now. Head to these links to see what my #MonthlyDIYChallenge colleagues have come up with this month using White Pillowcases! You are sure to be inspired!

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Hi! I’m Erin and I wrote this post!

I’m a former broadcast journalist turned DIY blogger; I love all things paint, and power tools. My husband and I work on DIY Passion to share our commitment to inspire others to see beauty in the every day. I love dogs, cats, Han Solo and pie – probably in that order. If you’d like to chat about working together, please get in touch and sign up for our email updates.

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