I love pincushions. Aside from being utilitarian, they’re fun to make, collect and admire. I have a few favorites that I use regularly, the others I display in groups in my sewing room on shelving, table tops and in baskets. These pear and apple pincushions are my favorites. I gave the apple to my mother and kept the pear for myself. I involved my husband in this craft. He was my stem finder. He didn’t have to venture very far into the back yard to find suitable specimens.
I have a penchant for wool felt and think that it is an ideal material choice for pincushions. It has a little give to it and it heals nicely when stabbed. I use pearl cotton to blanket stitch the front and back sections together and then I tightly stuff the cushions with fiberfill before closing them. Embellish with a few beads and voila! I like how the glass headed pins add texture to this crab’s shell.
I suppose that I have a penchant for the sea as well as I couldn’t help but to memorialize these little creatures in wool felt too. Again, pearl cotton, blanket stitch, fiberfill and a few beads. Nice weekend projects.
I made this rustic pumpkin for my mother for her birthday. She was born in October.
Sometimes I use wool roving to make pincushions. The larger pumpkin and the strawberry were made by wrapping, then needle felting the roving around a core made of decommissioned wool sweaters. The pear and snowman are wool roving throughout; they were small enough to forgo the more economical core. I love to use mini pincushions when hand sewing. Sometimes, all I need is somewhere to stick a single needle. I find that a mini cushion is a better option than using my pant leg or the arm of my chair!
These are two antique pincushions that I adore. The rabbit cushion was purchased at an antique auction. I do not know its age or value nor do I recall what I paid for it. I do remember bidding fiercely against someone else who also appreciated how cute it was. I also love the little hand made crazy quilt cushion. I found this one at an antique mall. I have no idea how old it is or where it came from. It is filthy, moth eaten and just plan charming. I wonder if some day, someone will buy my pincushions in an antique mall!
I’m working on a giant pin cushion that when finished, will adorn one of my living room end tables. I got the idea for this type of cushion while dropping off a show quilt at a fellow quilter’s home. There, gracing her coffee table was a 12” in diameter, wool appliqué, beaded pincushion that I drooled over. It was a thing of beauty, a fixture, a permanent tool that never needed to be put away, relegated to the sewing room or hidden from company. It was an accessory, a piece of sculpture, a work of art! Soon, I will have one too! I am going to fill this cushion with crushed walnut shells. I have never used these shells before but I have seen other cushions made with them. They have a nice heft to them and are typically loosely filled in the cushion, much like a bean bag. I bought the shells in a pet supply store. They are sold as reptile litter and needless to say, they are very affordable. I understand that they work much like emery, keeping pins clean and sharp. We’ll see.
Needle books are a great way to store and organize hand sewing needles. I use many different types and sizes of needles and never have trouble finding what I need. I was fortunate to have access to an electric punch when I made this book. The precise, clean cut holes made binding a cinch.
I made this needle book for my mom. She likes flowers.
I use this needle book for my beading needles. Have you made any pin cushions or needle books?