I love making these simple Pin Cushions. They're perfect as a token of affection for a special seamstress in your life or (even better) for yourself. They're quick and easy enough to whip up and you'll be surprised by how durable and useful they are... I always need a place to hold my pins and needles!
Start out with two colors of wool felt. I prefer 100% wool to the wool blend because it holds up SO much better - and what good is a pin cushion if it's not going to wear well?!
Cut one circle out of each color. Any size will do but I like to start out with something around 5-6" in diameter. Fold the circle in half and cut it into two halves... fold each half again and quarter the pieces.
Sew the same edge of each of the four quarters together so you have four halves. I lay them out this way to insure I sew the correct edge- because there is no "right" side to felt it's easy to make an error in this step.
Pin the four halves together with the seams turned in opposite directions (so they'll lay nice and flat). Sew across.
Pin the two circles together with the seams turned in the opposite direction. I like to make them with the colors alternating or with them lined up - Either way it will look great (see samples for both versions).
Sew the circles together leaving an opening for stuffing. Turn.
Stuffing options: If you're planning on using this pin cushion, stuffing it with sand is the way to go. Fine sand like that used for sandblasting can be really nice and will continue to sharpen your needles with each poke but, it can also weaken the seams causing your pin cushion to spring a leak. I often opt for play sand (used for sand boxes). It's clean and the slightly larger granules are not quite as hard on your seams but alternatively not quite as good for your needles. Trade offs.
If you're planning on using the pin cushion more for show but still want it have utility, opt for a mix of excelsior and sand. This is the route I usually take. It's the best of both worlds- Heavy enough to feel substantial while being easy to work with.
I never stuff pin cushions with fiberfill or cotton. While it's so easy to use unfortunately it binds inside the pin cushion in a way that will not allow your pins and needles to push in with ease... now that's just no good. Who wants a non-functioning pin cushion?
With embroidery floss add all of your embellishments.
Making small decorative stitches around the center seam of the pin cushion also reinforces the strength of the seam. You can vary this look by employing any type of stitch you like.
You can add lots of embellishments to these basic forms. I love to add little felt pom poms, small cut circles, buttons, running stitches etc. ... there is no right way: Have fun!
Purl Soho sells small bundles
American Moss by Fiberex is sold at most craft stores like Micheals