Are you following along with the steps to make four-patch pin cushions?
Find the first few steps posted HERE and HERE.
I added embellishment two weeks ago and discussed that HERE.
This week, I'm ready to Wrap it Up!
Last week we left off with a very wimpy unstuffed pin cushion shell.
To finish it up, I'm going to rely on my batting leftovers for stuffing. For my quilts, I'm a wool batting kinda gal. That means I have a lot of wool batting leftovers - pieces that are cut away from the quilt edges, or that are too small for another project.
You can use regular fiberfil if you prefer, but I've got the batting scraps, so I just start by cutting them into narrow strips. Any length.
(Forgive my horrible looking hands. My bi-weekly indulgent manicure isn't available at the moment. And my hands are chapped from all the extra soap and water. You can relate?)
Then I stuff the strips into the pin cushion until I can't get any more in. I like a tightly-packed pin cushion!
I'm always surprised by how many strips the little pin cushion swallows!
That leaves me with a gaping mouth that needs to be sewn closed.
It's at this point, I'm pretty glad I did the extra basting stitch and pre-pressed my seam allowances.
Make a quilted knot with your dry, unpolished fingers, thread the needle like normal and wrap the thread end around the needle shaft a good three or four times. Pull to tighten the knot on the needle, and pull the needle through (toward the upper left in the picture) while pinching the knot.
You should have a pretty sturdy knot at the very end of the thread. If you haven't done this before, you may need to practice a couple times.
Insert the needle into the seam allowance from the inside. You might have to do some needle acrobatics to get there, but then ladder stitch (sew in and out on one seam allowance, then sew in and out on the opposite seam allowance, and repeat) to close the opening.
I might sew it once, then turn the pin cushion and sew it again over the first stitches.
If you do the ladder stitches carefully, you won't see them. If you prefer to whip stitch you can do that too. If you are an English Paper Piecer these stitches are probably already familiar to you.
Once the opening is closed, I squish and knead the pin cushion until all the batting lumps are smoothed out and the stuffing is evenly distributed.
Then using perle cotton thread, two miniature buttons and a number 1 milliner needle (they are extra long and great for this part).
Knot the thread end with a quilters knot and sew a button in the middle of the top and bottom of the pin cushion. Pull firmly as you thread the needle through the button holes, passing through the pin cushion several times.
And there you have it! The top, embellished side, and the bottom plain side.
Now as for that stack of pin cushion parts I started with . . . if I finish one each week, I should be done with all of them in about 10 years!
Just kidding, more like 15.
Cheryl O'Konsky says
I finally made one and love it!! I’m going to make them for my sisters because you can’t make just one! Thanks for the great instructions.
Hope you’re having a wonderful day. Thank you for such an interesting project. Hope you have a Wonderful day – I love your birds too.
Happy Spring Easter /Passover Week.
I just finished making my first one, and it was so much easier than I thought it would be. The only part I had trouble with was sewing the buttons on to tuft it, but I think it will be easier the more I do. I can’t wait to get started on making more, but I think I will do something like you, and just work on one a week or so… too many other projects I want to work on as well, and I don’t want these to take over my sewing time. 🙂
Bravo! Yes, I agree that they can grab your attention. One color combination leads to another, then another! Well, I think we both know where that can end up! There are worse things, I suppose! For the tufting, see if you can find a size 1 milliners needle. They are extra long and pretty robust, but have a small enough eye to manage through some pretty small button holes.