Utilize your stash to create an oversize Courthouse Steps pincushion from 1"-wide strips.
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  • 1⁄4 yard total assorted medium to dark prints in red, blue, green, and brown (blocks)
  • 6" square blue stripe (block centers)
  • 1⁄4 yard total assorted light prints in orange, cream, and gold (blocks)
  • 5×10" rectangle muslin or a sandwich-size resealable plastic storage bag
  • 1 cup crushed walnut shells or sand (weighted pouch)
  • Polyester fiberfill

Finished pincushion: 5×5×5"

Measurements include 1⁄4" seam allowances. Sew with right sides together unless otherwise stated.

Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the following order.

From assorted medium to dark prints, cut:

  • 12 to 18--1×18" strips

From blue stripe, cut:

  • 6--1-1⁄2" squares

From assorted light prints, cut:

  • 12 to 18--1×18" strips

From muslin, cut:

  • 2--4-1⁄2" squares

Assemble Pincushion

1. Sew a medium or dark print 1×18" strip to one edge of a blue stripe 1-1⁄2" square (Diagram 1). Press seam away from blue stripe square and trim strip even with edge of square. Sew trimmed medium or dark print strip to opposite edge of blue stripe square. Press as before and trim even with edge of square (Diagram 2). Set aside remaining trimmed medium or dark print strip for use in other blocks.


2. In the same manner, sew a light print 1×18" strip to remaining edges of Step 1 blue stripe square. Press seams away from blue stripe square. Trim as before to make a block center (Diagram 3). The block center should be 2-1⁄2" square including seam allowances; square up, if necessary. Set aside remaining light print strip for use in other blocks.


3. Continue adding assorted medium/dark print strips and assorted light print strips to block center as before, pressing all seams away from block center and squaring up after each round, if necessary, to make Block A (Diagram 4). Block A should be 5-1⁄2" square including seam allowances.


4. Repeat steps 1–3 to make three A blocks total.

5. Reversing the placement of light and medium or dark prints, repeat steps 1–3 to make three B blocks.

Assemble Weighted Pouch

1. Sew together muslin 4-1⁄2" squares, leaving a 2" opening along one edge.

2. Fill with crushed walnut shells or sand. Using quilting thread or doubled sewing thread, slip-stitch opening closed to make weighted pouch.

Assemble Pincushion

1. On wrong side of each A and B block, mark a dot in each corner, 1⁄4" from adjacent edges.

2. Referring to Diagram 5, sew together two A blocks and two B blocks, alternating blocks and stopping and starting seams at dots, to make a tube. (Solid fabrics are shown instead of pieced blocks for illustration clarity.)


3. Matching dots, sew remaining B block to an open end of tube; clip corners as shown (Diagram 6). Repeat with remaining A block and open end of tube, leaving a 4" opening along one edge for turning, to make a cube (Diagram 7).


4. Turn cube right side out. Stuff with fiberfill to desired firmness, working fiberfill into corners. Add weighted pouch. Using quilting thread or doubled sewing thread, securely hand-sew opening closed to complete pincushion.