No matter how you use them, these quick pincushions are cute enough to give individually or as a towering set of three.

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Designer: Roseann Meehan Kermes

Materials

• Scraps of assorted red and green prints

• Embroidery floss: red, green, cream

• Cotton or polyester fiberfill

Finished pincushions: 5-1⁄2"-, 4"-, and 2-1⁄2"-diameter

Cut Fabrics

Click on "Download this Project" for pattern pieces. Instructions are given to make one large pincushion. For medium or small size, refer to measurements and patterns in parentheses.

From assorted red and green prints, cut:

• 2-7" squares (5" squares; 3" squares)

• 1 of Pattern D (E; F)

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Assemble Pincushion

1. On wrong side of a red or green print 7" square (5" square; 3" square), trace around A (B; C) template with a pencil.

2. Right sides together, layer marked and unmarked squares. With a very small stitch length (1.5–2mm), sew on marked line. Overlap stitches slightly where you begin and end.

3. Trim seam allowance a scant 1⁄4" beyond stitching line. Clip corners and curves almost to stitching (Diagram 1).

4. Decide which print will be the top of the pincushion; on that side, carefully cut a 3⁄4"-long slit in the center.

5. Turn pincushion right side out. Stuff very tightly with stuffing (use eraser end of a pencil to poke stuffing into "petals"). Hand-stitch opening closed.

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Finish Pincushion

1. Using six strands of matching or contrasting floss and a long, sharp needle, insert needle into pincushion's top center, then exit bottom center (Diagram 2). Bring floss up around one of the inside curves between petals, then push needle from top center down to bottom center as before. Continue stitching and wrapping floss between each petal, pulling tightly to indent pincushion. Knot securely.

2. Turn under 1⁄4" around red or green print D (E; F) circle. Using a long running stitch, hand-stitch close to folded edge; draw up stitches tightly and tie thread ends in a knot to make a yo-yo (Diagram 3). (To speed the process, designer Roseann Meehan Kermes used large, small, and extra-small yo-yo-making tools from Clover.)

3. Hand-stitch yo-yo to top center of pincushion with matching thread to complete pincushion.

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