What a Big Pin Cushion You Have My Dear!

The March Island Batik Challenge is to try a technique that is new to me.  As a person totally addicted to all things quilting I was having a hard time coming up with an idea.

Try a Technique

Early in February I was at a quilt retreat with gal pals at Needle in a Haystack Retreat Center in Findley Lake, NY (fabulous retreat center).  In their fabric store I spotted something high on a shelf.


I asked “is that a mini tuffet kit”?  the answer was “yes”.  “What would you do with a 8″ tuffet” I asked?  She said “it could be for an American Girl Doll”.  Then it struck me….it could be a pin cushion on steroids!  I have never tried to make a tuffet before, so that was my choice for “try a technique new to me!!!


I had these beautiful 2.5″ inch strips from Island Batik’s “Spoolin Around” collection.  I love how accurate and clean the edges are on Island Batik pre-cuts!


First task was to staple the batting around the foam, to round the edges and attach it to the wooden base.  I’m already in trouble because apparently I tugged too hard on the batting, more about that later.


I had to pick 9 strips, trim them to 1.25″ wide, and sew them together pressing the seams open.  So far so good.


Cut them into four units 9.5″ wide.


Sew the four units together forming a tube.  Here is where things start to go astray.  I placed the form into the tube to check on the fit.  It seemed a little loose to me.  I guess I tugged too hard on the batting when stapling it to the wooden base.


Next I had to zig-zag a gathering cord on both ends of the tube.  My computerized sewing machine couldn’t handle the job so I had to break out “Libby” my Free-Westinghouse, 60’s era sewing machine to get the job done!  This was the hardest part to accomplish, many expletives were flying around Tuckerville!


First attempt showed that the tube was way too big.  I had to remove 2 strips to make it smaller, (again, I tugged too hard on the batting while stapling it to the wooden base)!  I don’t think mine looks anything like the pictures in the instructions.

Tuffet Source

I don’t know how they got theirs so smooth!  I used a glue gun to attached the button and cover the bottom.  I got glue every where, not to mention burns from dripping it on my fingers.

Tucker is not sure what to think of it.


I think I would rather make a King Size quilt than make another tuffet!  But I will smile every time I look at it, and aren’t the colors lovely?


14 thoughts on “What a Big Pin Cushion You Have My Dear!

  1. Vicki in MN

    I had thought about making one of those for this challenge-kinda glad I didn’t now! But kudos to you for trying and stickin’ to it.

  2. Dione @ Clever Chameleon

    Love the colours, and thanks for sharing your project, warts and all. In the shiny blog world it is easy to sometimes feel that I am the only one with projects embedded in the wall from where I flung them out of frustration! 🙂 It got finished, and you are now the one sticking the pins in, so that must be satisfying. I can’t believe your pin cushion is nearly as big as our dog! lol.

  3. Carol Jordan

    Your report confirms my thoughts about tuffets. I don’t need one first of all. My 2 cats would scratch it to pieces. I congratulate you for your dedication. Is the snow melting? A second nor’easter is coming through this week. Miss yo

    1. ifthesethreadscouldtalk Post author

      The snow is not melting! Yes, another nor’easter is on the way. One day they say another 8 to 10” today they say 3 to 6”, they don’t know. I’m leaving tomorrow for NC, S180 CI reunion!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s