Thursday, May 1, 2014

DIY Baby Head Pincushion

One day you reach for a needle and find that your old faithful pincushion has turned into an unsightly, threadbare lump.

Old faithful

Time to scrounge around the house for scraps of fabric and interesting junk to create something new. This is the first of two pincushions, both working off the same general idea. The inspiration was a rubber baby head that has been bouncing around here for a number of years. The first step - figure out how to cut off the top of the head in a perfect circle. I found a cup that was just the right size.

Draw a circle around top of head with a pen

After cutting off the top of the head I noticed the ring at the neck made the thing wobbly, so I cut that off too.

Cut off top of head and neck ring

An X-Acto cuts right through like butter

For the next step I cut a piece of velvet into a rough circle and frankly, the size of the circle is a guess. I guessed wrong the first time and had to redo it with a bigger circle. This is such a quick process that the trial-and-error sizing isn't much of a drawback. Gather the edge of the circle in a sloppy, any-old-way, large stitch and pull in so you've created a pouch (leaving plenty of thread still on the needle dangling and ready for final closure). Use a funnel to pour sand into the pouch. Test size by putting the pouch as is into the head and assessing the fit. You'll be turning the whole thing upside down for the final version. Once the size seems right, draw the pouch entirely closed - stitch back and forth through the neck of the pouch a few times to secure it, clip any extra fabric away from the top edge, and then keep stitching back and forth, overlapping and drawing in until it is entirely secure and closed off with no place for sand to leak out. Again, you can be as sloppy as you want. This part won't show.

Scrap of fabric, funnel, needle and thread, potting sand

Now turn the sandbag upside down (the stitching will be inside the head at the bottom), and stuff the thing into your head. I had planned on gluing the bag in, but that turned out not to be necessary in this case. The final product is solid, has heft, and the sand sharpens the needles as you push them in and out. Best of all, my pincushion now looks like a little assemblage piece instead of a hot mess.


  1. Perfect use for a creepy baby doll head! :)

  2. This is the most unique creation I have seen all day. Thanks for posting!

  3. Thanks! Positive feedback always appreciated.

  4. All day? I'd say EVER! I've already found the doll and massacred it and cut the hair! Don't know why ... But I love this pincushion. I collect pin cushions and this one is truly unique.

  5. Replies
    1. I assume this is a compliment, as in “nasty women.”

  6. No one should ever read comments that are posted anonymously.

    1. No worries, see my reply above. But you are probably right re automatically rejecting comments that are anonymous.


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