I honestly believe that it is not possible to have too many pincushions! I use at least seven different types of pins, and I like to keep like-pins with like, and to have two pincushions for each sort (one to pin from where I am working, and one near my machine to pin into as I remove the pins when sewing). So that is fourteen pincushions already, and we haven’t even got to needles yet! You get the idea. So when I saw that clover had a Create-a-Pincushion product, whereby you use your own fabric and stuffing and they provide the base, I thought I would give it a try.
The bases come in brown or ivory, so I chose ivory. I bought two, so I could make a pair. The bases are about 3″ in diameter.
The base consists of three parts: the centre of the pincushion (a sort of cup with grooves around the outside), a silicone ring for securing the fabric to the cup, and the outer ring that goes over the whole thing and holds it together. It also comes with clear instructions!
You can make the top out of anything you like, in principle, but it helps if the fabric is not too stiff (like denim) or too thin (like lawn). A woven plaid seemed to me ideal. Embroidered cross-stitch linen or Aida fabric would work well too. I went for a Japanese woven fabric, because the colour matched with the ivory of the base, and I had a piece in my scrap drawer just the right size.
You also need to provide stuffing for the pincushion. I used fibrefill toy stuffing, as that it what I had to hand, but scraps of batting or natural wool would work too.
So I rolled the fibrefill into a ball-like shape, and squashed it (in a nicely rounded way!) into the central cup. Then you centre your fabric over the cup, and, from above, stretch the silicone ring over the top into the first groove in the side of the cup. The silicone ring holds the fabric in place.
The silicone ring holds the fabric nice and firmly, but it is easy to work around the ring and even out the folds and puckers etc in the fabric. When the top of the pincushion is as you want it, then you slip the outside ring partly over the top.
This serves two purposes: firstly, you can see if it fits, and secondly, the outer ring holds the excess fabric in place and functions as a guide as you trim the excess fabric away with a small pair of scissors.
Once the excess fabric had been trimmed away, you have two choices: you can push the outer ring down, and your pincushion is finished, or you can make use of the second groove in the outside of the inner cup to corral the trimmed fabric with a ribbon or a piece of thin cord. I decided to do this, and used a leftover scrap of ribbon. I felt it made the edges neater and more secure.
Then you place the outer ring over the pincushion from the top and push it down as far as it will go, and your pincushion is complete!
You can remove the outer ring in the future if you wish, so you could change the fabric (if you wanted a change) or retrieve a needle if it had sunk into the inside of the pincushion. I made my second one with Japanese fabric too.
These were really, really easy to make, and look very cute. It takes a lot longer to blog about it than it did to do! I am already thinking about how I could take a future version up a level, by incorporating a ruffle, or fabric I have embroidered myself or something, but in the meantime I am very pleased with these two additions to my pincushion assortment.