Handmade Gift Series: Pincushion and Zipper Pouch

  • Difficulty Rating: Beginner
finished sewing kit

This month, I’m making a handmade pincushion and sewing kit, for the latest installment of my Handmade Gift Series. Who doesn’t love handmade pincushions?!

This pincushion is made by sewing two secret garden quilt blocks together and stuffing it with filler. To do the same, start by cutting one square of fabric measuring 10” x 10”. I am using adorable coordinating fabrics by Cosmo Cricket. The secret garden quilt blocks really lend themselves to matching fun fabrics. Fold over the raw edges by 1” and press with a hot iron.


Press raw edges


Now fold the square in half and press. Open up and rotate the square by 90 degree. Fold it in half again, and press once more. Open out your square and you will have fold lines in the shape of a cross.


Cross fold lines


Fold each corner of the square in towards the center point. Accuracy is key here, so try and get your points to match up as perfectly as you can.


Fold in the corners


Now cut a square measuring 3 3/4” x 3 3/4” in a coordinating or contrasting fabric. Using a rotary cutter, ruler and cutting mat will give you the most accurate cutting lines.


Cutting co-ordinating fabric


Place the smaller square underneath the folded corners of your first square and fold the corners back over it.


Positioning fabric


I like to sew the points of each corner down in the center. I am by no means an expert quilter and I find this trick helps me keep my points square.


Stitching corner points


Carefully fold back the edges of the corner points and pin in place. You’ll notice the second fabric is being revealed underneath.


Pinning back folded edges


Stitch the folded edges down, working your way slowly and carefully around all four points.


Stitched edges


Sew a small button to the center of your ‘flower’. Not only does it look great, it hides any areas where your points may not meet perfectly! I used a wooden button from Maya Road.  The button can even be finished off with a small flower trinket adhered to its center. Beautiful! 

I repeated the process to create a second secret garden quilt block then stitched both together with wrong sides facing. Leaving one side open enables you to add filling. Make sure to stuff the pin cushion as firmly as possible. You don’t want pins and needles to poke out through the other side. If you are feeling adventurous, stuffing a pincushion with sand (or even human hair!) helps keep the pins sharp.


Stuffing pin cushion


Sew up the remaining side to finish.

To create the coordinating zipper pouch that completes my handmade sewing kit, I cut 2 pieces of fabric measuring 10” x 10” and applied some lightweight fusible interfacing to the back of one of the pieces. Again, I am using coordinating fabrics by Cosmo Cricket that match my handmade pincushion.

First lay your lining fabric face down on your work surface. Lay your outer fabric face up on top. Pin the zipper to the top edge through both fabrics. The zipper should be face down. Sew the zipper to both fabrics.


Pinning zipper


Fold the fabric around and pin the other side of the zipper to the other ends of both fabrics. Again, your zipper will be face down on top of the right side of your outer fabric.


Pinning second side of zipper


Stitch the second side of the zipper to your fabric.


Stitched zipper


Sew the short ends together making sure that the zipper is folded down on both sides. Trim the seam allowance with pinking shears for a neat finish.


Finishing seams


Turn your zipper pouch right sides out and press lightly with an iron. Avoid touching the zipper because if it is plastic, it will melt.


Finished zipper pouch

Supply List



Craft filling


Sewing machine

Iron and ironing board

Lightweight fusible interfacing

9” zipper