Not to distract everybody from littleone's
nice pin cushion but I thought I would mention the pin cushion I'm going to make. I grew up with a green wool one like this and so of course I think it's great. The features I love about this design is that it's flat so it'll sit nicely on a sewing table. Plus if you pack it tight enough, it's got enough weight to hold things down.
According to Mom, this was designed by my grandma as a 4-H project many years ago:
1. Remove the top lid and label from an empty tuna can or pineapple can (cleaned and dried, of course!).
2. Trace around the can on brown paper and add a little extra for your seam allowance (3/8" usually).
3. Next, measure out a rectangle that wraps around the body of the can and add a seam allowance here also.
4. Transfer your shapes to fabric, cutting out two circles and one rectangle. If you want to embellish it with ribbon, rick-rack, appliques, etc. do it now.
5. Put the right sides together of one of the circles and the rectangle and sew together to make a fabric cylinder with no bottom piece. I don't know enough about sewing yet to say if you should sew the short edges of the rectangle together first or the circle onto the long end of the rectangle. Save me the frustration and let me know if you already know the answer.
If I remember right, you'll want to snip into the remaining seam allowance to allow the fabric to curve (or whatever the snipping does).
6. The original design calls for packing the can tight with sawdust but you could probably use rice or small dry beans. I suppose you could probably use sand, but make sure your fabric is super tightly woven so it doesn't leak out or put a second layer of fabric under the top circle that would help keep it in.
7. Turn the cylinder right side out. Slide the sleeve over the open end of the filled can and hand-sew the bottom circle on. In my mind the bottom circle would probably need to be a tad bit smaller than the actual can so the sewn edge fits under the can so it sits straight. I'm not sure on this detail but you can easily cut it down, if need be.
I haven't made this yet but I'll post a pic when I get it finished. I was disappointed when I noticed that the classic tomato-style pin cushion is under $2 at the fabric store but I think I'll appreciate making my own. I recommend using a heavy-duty fabric just because it'll last longer.