Sunday, February 14, 2010

Miniature Quilt Pincushions

Or perhaps I should call this Christmas in February?  (We have the “white”  part down).  Once again thinking I’d like to be ahead of the game for little gifts, I made up these pincushions.  The pieced squares finish at one-half inch and the pincushions themselves range from about 5 to 6 inches square.

I used the 13 Square foundation from Miniatures in Minutes.  Click here to download a pdf file with detailed directions from the Projects 2010 page of my website.   Here are a few of the process photos. 

I’m always thinking about new ways to use the foundations from Miniatures in Minutes.  For these pincushions, I only used part of the foundation.  I still created Quilt Layout Diagrams.

13 Square Pincushion layout

13 square pincushion 2 layout

But, honestly, I just laid my patches out as I wanted to piece them and set up next to my sewing machine.

Here’s what the foundations look like with the patches all added (but before the rows are sewn together).

And here’s what they look like after the rows have been joined.  You can see how I used only part of the foundation with both sets of designs.

And here they are, paper removed, ironed, and ready for borders:

I added either one or two narrow borders, depending on fabric selections.  These two are my favorites.  I just love the colors  in this one: 

And I always love Japanese taupe.  So soft and pretty:

For the record, I used two different fillings.  For a couple, I just used regular poly fill.  These make for very poufy pincushions.  For the rest, I used crushed walnut shells which I find at the local pet store.  The shells are packaged as terrarium ground cover (for lizards, no less), but they make great pincushion filler – weighty and solid, small but not as small or dense as sand.  I’ll admit, I’m a bit messy with the shells.  No matter how hard I try to be neat, I always spill.

And just because, here’s a couple more close ups: 

Right now, these little guys are sitting in a pile on my sewing table.  The colors are just so bright and happy, they make me happy!


  1. ohmygosh.....I LOVE these. One more thing to add to my list :-)

  2. These are wonderful! What a creative way to use up scraps. I bought your "Minitures in Minutes" book for inspiration for my project in Doll Quilt Swap 8. Will be posting photos soon:)

  3. These are fabulous- I love how bright and colorful they all are- I will have to check in the pet shop for walnut shells next time I am making a pincushion.
    Thanks for sharing your lovely work.

  4. adorable and one can never have enough pin cushions
    still haven't tried crushed walnut shells for filling a pincushion.
    I should

  5. Terri those are just so adorable

  6. Love your little pincushions. They are extra cute with the small pieces. I don't know what it is about pieced pin cushions like that, but I really like them. My sister made me one for christmas with the crushed walnut shells and I just love it.

  7. I love your pincushions and you are really having fun with that book!

  8. They are the most wonderful assortment of pincushions ever Terrie!