Tutorial: Sewing Machine Needle Pincushion

When I first started sewing I never paid any attention to the needle that was in my machine.  I used the same needle on everything until it broke.  The needle is the most inexpensive part of your machine but it is the most crucial for getting good results.  Your needle should be changed every 4-6 hours of sewing.  When I haven't used a certain needle for that amount of time I put in a pin cushion similar to the one above.
Just recently I bought Lesley Riley's Tap Transfer Artist Paper from Amazon and I thought this would be a fun project to try it on.

4" x 10" piece of wool felt - for tomato
3" x 3" piece of wool felt - for cap
20" of baby rick rack
Fabri-tak Glue
Cotton or Poly Fill, Excelsior
Perle Cotton
Needle Description Template (click on to open link)
Button (optional)

Print in landscape and actual size Needle Description Template or your own template onto TAP.  It is always a good idea to test print on paper before printing on TAP to make sure it is printing correctly.  If you are using your own template make sure you print in mirror image.  Trim the printed TAP to 10" long and around 1/4" above and below the wording.

Place your TAP in the center of your piece of wool felt.  Apply the TAP to the wool felt according to the directions that come with the TAP.

Using Fabri-tak glue your baby rick rack onto the wool felt a little above and below the descriptions. Let dry.

Fold right sides together.

Sew the ends together using 1/4" seam allowance.

Sew a running stitch along the bottom of the cushion, pull thread to cinch together and make couple of back stitches to secure it. Turn the cushion right side out and fill using your choice of fill.  I used poly fill with excelsior in the middle to give it some weight.

Sew a running stitch along the top of the cushion,  pull thread to cinch and tack it together with a couple of stitches then knot.

Thread the perle cotton onto a large embroidery needle. Start in the center of the bottom and come up through the top center, then wrap around the cushion using the perle cotton to divide the needle descriptions and repeat until you have eight divided sections. I went under the rick rack by gently loosening the glue where my needle would go through.

Cut out a cap.  Attach using the same thread to go through the center of the cap.  Attach a button and go back down the center with your perle cotton coming out the bottom and secure.

I added a little personal touch by sewing a blanket stitch on the edge of the cap and I made a beaded flower that my button would set into.


  1. This is such a great idea! I am pinning this as I need this though I am pretty bad about using those needles for as long as I can- it's that frugal gene in me I guess!

    bee blessed

  2. Hi Paula! So nice stopping by to visit with you and scroll through many of your posts. Lovely place you have here! :)

    Very sweet and useful needle pin cushion!

    Nice to meet you!
    Kindly, Lorraine

  3. That is so adorable; love the pink and pretty jewels on top. I'm off to see more. Happy blogging!

  4. Hi Paula, this is so cute! Your tutorial is fantastic - I'd love to try to make my own. Thank you for sharing this!

  5. This is gorgeous dear Paula! Very well done, and such a great tutorial!

  6. What a fantastic idea! I'm terrible for taking out a needle and putting it on the side to use a different kind of needle, then having no idea what it is later!

  7. Oh how BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I just loooove what you did, so so cute!

  8. This is so cute!! It would make such a cute gift!! We're so glad you joined us for "Strut Your Stuff Saturday." Thanks and come back soon!! -The Sisters

  9. Super cute! Great idea! I'd love for you to add it on my link party at: http://printabelle.com/?p=3188 Thanks!

  10. Awww. this is so cute - adding the wordings is such a brilliant idea!

  11. what a cute, clever and useful project! we are featuring it today. drop by the blog to grab your featured button (if you fancy so ^^)



  12. This is a wonderful idea(!) and the result is just beautiful!

  13. Fun idea! Love the needle description idea...makes it so unique! Thanks for sharing:) Pinning it!

  14. Wow! This turned out beautifully! Love the script around the center.

    <3 Christina
    Wildly Original Roundup linky party is open!

  15. Functional and pretty? I love it!

  16. Wow - I love this! I am going to make one as soon as I get a chance! (Too much sewing ;)


  17. Lovely colors and pretty details with the beads! I love it! Thank you for sharing the tutorial!
    Your newest follower,


  18. I am pinning this to my "craft" board on Pinterest! I love this! I've just shared it on Google+ too!

    Thanks so much for sharing this post at my Say G'day linky party! This week's linky is now live and I am very excited to invite you to a Social media linky party that I will be hosting on July 14. The details are all at the blog if you would like to join in.

    Best wishes for a wonderful weekend,
    Natasha in Oz

  19. this is so cute I'll have to make this! I"m a new follower and would love if you followed me at www.iheartpears.blogspot.com

  20. I love this idea. I have been sewing for years but haven't been good about changing the needle. I just started doing it on a regular basis and also changing with the fabric type. I wasn't sure how to save the needles that were still good. Thank for this wonderful idea. I am going to make this as soon as I get the Tap paper I will be ordering tomorrow.