Pincushion Parade

The Atlanta Modern Quilt Guild sponsored a pincushion swap as our holiday gift wedgepincushionexchange this year.   I have been on a pincushion making mission ever since.  Apples, pears, tomatoes, squares and other shapes have graced my worktable as I tried my hand at various shapes.  (Co-workers bought all of my samples – which came as a huge surprise!!) My hands-down favorite is the tetrahedron shape shown here.  I spied few shabby chic versions on Pinterest that I had to make for myself.

A tetrahedron pincushion pattern is available on Etsy, but being the resourceful type that I am, I knew I could figure it out and make one from materials I had on hand in my studio.  For equally resourceful types, here’s how I went about constructing my tetrahedron pincushion:

1)  Find a chicken pincushion tutorial of your choice where the chicken’s body is wedge shaped.

2)  Select two 5-6″ squares of fabric.  Or piece enough scraps together and cut your fabric squares from that.  Add flat trims, ribbons, and other embellishments to your squares now. (Save beads and buttons for later).  Interface the squares with a mid-weight fusible interfacing.

3)  Sew and stuff the pincushion (minus the chicken parts) as indicated in your tutorial.

4)  Add buttons, beads and decorative stitching if desired.

5)  Admire your handiwork and put your new pincushion to work in your studio.

Helpful hints:

1) A doll needle, a curved needle and embroidery floss are worth their weight in gold for this project.

2) Crushed walnut shells (found in reptile section at pet supply store) are a popular stuffing material.  It adds a nice weight to the pincushion.  However, if you or the intended recipient is allergic to nuts, you’ll want to avoid this filler material.

3) The tetrahedron shape needs to be weighted.  Instead of crushed walnut shells, I weight the pincushion with a small muslin pouch of aquarium gravel (brand new, rinsed off and allowed to dry first) and add polyester stuffing to finish it off.  Some folks also like to add dried lavender and other items from the garden to add a nice scent their pincushions.

One thought on “Pincushion Parade

  1. Thanks for the tip on using walnut shells. I have a couple pincushion patterns to try but didn’t know what to use for stuffing.

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