As you can see above, I made this latest little house pincushion as a Christmas Cottage, complete with a reindeer and snow! And not only is it a super cute pincushion, but it also has a hidden needlecase under the roof!
Right, let's get started. First of all gather your materials:
Fabric scraps (the biggest piece being 6" x 4")
Felt (largest piece 5" x 3" plus scraps)
Small piece of wadding/batting
Scraps of white fabric
Small piece of card
Buttons, beads and embroidery silks
Small piece of thin braid or ribbon (I used something called 'rats tails')
Matching threads and general haberdashery supplies.
I like to use a different fabric for each side of the house, but you could make it all to match if you choose.
So cut all your fabric pieces:
Cut 3 x House sides and base - 3 1/2" x 3"
Cut 2 x Under roofs - 2 3/4" x 3"
Cut 1 x outer roof - 6" x 4"
Cut 2 x House sides (see below)
Out of wadding cut 1 x inner roof - 5" x 3"
Out of felt cut 1 x inner roof - 5" x 3"
Now it is time to assemble your house. The important thing to remember here is to start all your seams 1/4" from the edge of the fabric, and finish them leaving a 1/4" to spare.
Now it is time to make the roof.
Now at this point you could make the simple pincushion, but if you wanted to make the pincushion with the hidden needle case under the roof then DON'T sew all the way around the roof, but leave a space on one of the short sides and slip in a little loop of braid into the seam and sew this down (reversing a few times to make it really stable).
So now attach your roof to the under roof. If you are making the needle case version then you will be attaching just one side (the side without loop to the under roof without the felt).
Then stuff it from the top and sew the last 2 sides down.
You can also sew all the sides of the chimney top down and stuff it before sewing it to the roof, but I find the chimney ends up too fat and rounded that way.
Now we have the house structure firmly in place, it is time to make the windows and doors and embellish as you wish. I haven't given patterns for the windows and doors. The house is pretty small so just cut squares and rectangle to fit. If they are too big, trim them to size.
Scrappy Pincushion Swap. I made an opening door for this one with a tiny needlecase behind.
Now all that's left to do is some nice embroidery. I usually embroider trailing flowers around the walls of the house, but seeing as this is a Christmas Cottage, I thought I would just add some snow instead (as all the flowers would be dead in winter anyway - am I taking the realism too far?). I cut out some meandering 'snowy' shapes in felt and sewed these to the bottom of the roof and made lots of french knots in white embroidery silks all over the roof top for falling snow.
(the hand sewn version). I embroidered crosses on the windows at the front on this one, and added a window on the side and one in the door (with a babushka behind!). But I forgot to put a door knob on! Lynne from Lily's Quilts made a very funny note on this photo on Flickr: the dolly is saying, "help, help I can't get out, somebody has sewn the door shut!"
That did make me laugh!
This is going to be another Christmas present, though, as before, it is hard to part with something so cute!
I do hope you enjoyed this tutorial and have found it useful. I would love to see any little house pincushions you manage to make.
I am very happy for you to use these patterns and instructions to make lots of nice pincushions for swaps and gifts, but please, don't use them for commercial purposes. And please always give me a credit and a link back to this blog page if possible.