I am slightly obsessed with Pinterest, but I’ve created another place to pin. I’ve made a couple of pin cushions. This may seem like a random thing to do, but I have a good reason. I’m going attend the upcoming Surface Design Association Conference in San Antonio, Texas. One of the optional member activities involves making and donating a pincushion for sale. This was the description in the brochure:

“Plethora of Pincushions. Our first-ever pincushion sale to benefit SDA. We’re asking you to donate wild, wacky, wonderful handmade or vintage pincushions to offer for sale in the SDA Bookstore. Compete for the soon-to-be-coveted Pincushion Prize—a $100 gift certificate accepted at any SDA vendor.”

Sounded like a project I could tackle. I looked online for some design ideas and formulated a plan. I found an interesting shape to work with and cut some scrap fabric to test the pattern. I liked the result. Then I decided to create an interesting fabric for my pincushion. I chose to use wool and I wanted to alter it with my embellishing machine. What’s that? Oh, a little something I bought a year or two ago, and this seemed the perfect excuse to take it out of the box. I did that, and I started to play. I used beautiful houndstooth wool pant legs and scraps of lovely hand dyed wool fabric. I put them together to create a unique fabric. After a bit of trial and error, I made my first pincushion. It’s less than perfect, but totally satisfactory as a prototype.

another view of 1 first pincushionSince this was really just a test model, I quickly made a second one. I learned a few things on the first one – this one went together more easily and I’m delighted with the result.

red and orange pincushion top view red and orange 2I almost forgot to tell you about the filling for the pincushion. Research revealed that crushed walnut shells are recommended  for filling. These are available  in small bags at sewing shops, or in larger bags at pet stores. Guess which one I picked?

walnut cat litterKush was delighted with my choice. When I get tired of making pincushions, she might even get to try this litter.


11 thoughts

  1. I love your little spin on the “pinning” concept.. and your pin cushions turned out just so pretty! I wish you luck in the contest.. and have a wonderful trip!! I can’t wait to hear all about it! And hello to Kush! Maybe you should call them PinKushions:D xx


    1. Actually someone else suggested the litter. I didn’t know they made kitty litter from anything besides clay, but besides the walnut shells, there were corn, wheat, pine and paper litters. I must be tight fisted. I don’t like the idea of spending money on “designer” cat litter. Am I wrong? Thanks for dropping by!


  2. I love it and I would love to have one. I’m saying this though I no longer sew much, and I don’t need a pincushion! Nevertheless, this pincushion got to me. Seems like a tiny sculpture. I hope you win the prize.


    1. Thanks, Claudia. I don’t think it will stand out compared to some of the other entries, but I’m thrilled with it. It feels really good in your hands – nice weight. I usually use a magnetic pin cushion, but I might have to switch now!


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