Pincushion

by Marni Franks

Materials

Main fabric – 10 1/2in square

Contrast fabric – approx 4in square

Sheet of Mylar

Fabric glue

Sewing machine

Thread

Needle

Buttons: 2

Method

From your background fabric cut one 10 1/2in square.

From a sheet of cardboard or Mylar make a 9in square template. This needs to be subjected to the heat of the iron so it either needs to be something that can take the heat like Mylar or something cheap like cardboard that you can replace easily.

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Grab some washable fabric glue – Sewline Glue Pen or Roxanne’s Baste It Glue.

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Centre your 9in template on the wrong side of your background fabric. Press the top and the bottom edges in towards the centre of the template making sure that the edges are against the template and crisp.

Place glue in the corners of the square (the folded edge) and press the sides in towards the centre in the same way, the glue will set with the iron’s heat and hold it all in place.

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Pull out your template gently.

Fold your square into quarters and press to get your guidelines for the next step.

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Open up your square with the raw edges facing up. Pick a corner and fold it into the centre. Press lightly. You really want your outside corners to be as accurately folded as possible so in this step make sure you focus on them and if your centre is overlapping for the outside corners to work that’s ok and I give you permission to fudge this as needed. Once your corners are good press firmly.

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Place the square with the folded side up (so you can see the centre points), then fold the corners in to the centre, this time making sure that the centre points match perfectly!

Measure inside the folded unit and cut a square of your contrasting fabric to that size. I tend to cut mine 1/8in smaller so that I know it fits perfectly.

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Pin the folds down and stitch the centre in a little cross to secure the points down on the contrasting fabric.

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Pick any of the openings and fold back, curving it gently, not pulling it too hard and press it with the iron. Fold back all of the openings that match the first one you have done (keeps the folds looking consistent like when you do cross-stitch). Press each fold and pin to secure. Fold the opposite openings back to match, pressing and pinning as you go.

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Pick a curve and stitch the full arc, crossing over your little centre cross – this way you will only be stitching four rows and not have to start and stop for each mini arc. Reverse stitch at the beginning and end of each row.

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Measure your finished window and cut a back for your pincushion that is a half-inch bigger all the way around. Align one edge of your window section to one edge of the backing and pin.

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Start stitching on the edge that is opposite the aligned edge you just pinned. Reverse stitch and then stitch all the way around leaving a 1 1/2in opening for turning.

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Trim the edges off leaving a wide edge at the opening. Notch the corners.

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Turn the pincushion out the right way. Stuff firmly with toyfill.

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Ladder stitch the opening closed.

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Pull in the middle of your pincushion with a button either side and use your preferred method for attaching buttons.

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Stick your favourite pins in it and you’re ready for your next sewing project!

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