How To: Fall Pin Cushion

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!

Wool Felt:
Purl Soho sells small bundles

Hardware Stores


American Moss by Fiberex
is sold at most craft stores like Micheals


  1. This is very cool Jen thanks !
    I think I might be making some gifts for friends and family

  2. I love these!!!!!
    Thank you for the tutorial.
    I think I need to purchase a sewing machine! (smile)

  3. These pincushions are great. I love the colors and simplicity of them. Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. Jen---way to find time for this fabulous tutorial. I'm delighted to give ti a shot.

    Thanks so much! (My best to Claude)

  5. Thank you for giving sources. It makes a difference when you know that strange materials (like excelsior) are readily available. I'll be diving into pincushion world soon!

  6. Those are so pretty! I love the fall colors. I'll be linking.

  7. Wow!Thanks so much,for posting such a wonderful tutorial with tips! I can't wait to try one!
    Claude is precious!

  8. Sigh, so nice. Your work is always so pleasing! Thanks for this!

  9. Thank you so much for your darling pincushion tutorial, you're so sweet to share it with us!

    And thank you so much for the embroidery stitch links. I haven't heard of some of them before, so much fun!

  10. Thank you for the nice tutorial. I especially like the substitute you suggested for polyfill/cotton filling!

  11. Also, thank you for the nice pin cushion
    pattern. I have been looking for something
    easy and quick and thank you for educating us
    about the usefulness of the sand and which fabrics
    you prefer. They are so cute!!!
    Thanks for the inspiration : )

  12. Wonderful tutorial!
    Thanks so much
    I always love coming by and seeing all your wonderful creations and beautiful pictures

  13. Thanks, I'm just setting up my sewing space and realised I did not have a pin cushion. Now I can make my own!

  14. i really appreciate the experienced tips on sand fill - i've got a few different styles of cushions in the works and wanted to know the pro's and cons -this was exactly what i was looking for. thx!