Craft Rocks: Sewing machine pin cushion recycling fun

Craft Rocks with Jo Burgess

A while ago I made some little cross stitch sewing machines. I have absolutely no idea where I got the pattern from, but isn’t it a beauty with the little French knots and how it shoes how the machine is threaded. I think it might have been free with a magazine someone gave to me years ago.

How cute is this little sewing machine – swoon!

Anyway, I stupidly used a really tiny scrap of fabric to make it on. And then realised I had no way of framing it. Then I found some lovely tiny vintage looking frames, and realised if I put it inside the frame the glass squished the French knots. I’m not a naturally gifted French knotter, so if I make some I like I don’t want them squished 🙂

Then I suddenly thought, “Ooh, make it into a pin cushion.”

Because I had used a lovely vintage look aida fabric to sew it on, the border would have to compliment that. Cast your eye back to my column where I made cushions for a music festival. At that time I bought some cushions which were bargains in a sale to use the insides for the festival. But the cushion covers were still in my random craft stash and were just the right shade to use.

I measured the tiny piece of fabric I had sewn the cross stitch on (which is only 7cm x 6cm) and cut four pieces of fabric to sew on as borders. I sewed the side pieces on first, then joined them up with the top and bottom pieces.

The little machine surrounded by old cushion cover fabric

Then I searched my fat quarter fabric stash and found this lovely thread fabric. So I used it for the back of the pin cushion, and cut some “hand made with love” ribbon to fasten into it as a tag so it could be hung up if wanted.

And what did I stuff it with? Do you remember my column where I upcycled my old sofa bed? I have a huge bag of leftover sofa cushion stuffing from that project, so I used some of it to stuff the pin cushions. Nothing goes to waste at Craft Rocks HQ!

The lovely backing fabric and ribbon

So here is the finished pin cushion. I’m really pleased with this project – it’s used a leftover scrap of aida, leftover threads from old cross stitch kits, an old cushion cover, a fat quarter I bought years ago, some ribbon I was given, and old sofa stuffing. So it cost me nothing apart from my time and I had fun making it so that time was well spent.

The finished pin cushion

I made this for a friend but (as usual) want to keep it for myself… I really must start making two of everything! Oh look… they’re breeding – yippee!

Yippee – now I can have one too!

Have you upcycled anything into a pin cushion? I bet there are lots of lovely upcycled versions around.

Cost: Nothing!

Best music for this project: Living on a Prayer by Bon Jovi (they have a new album out so I’m re-living my youth!)

Best cake for this project: Butterfly cakes

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