Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre heart etui 33: how to make a heart pincushion

I am currently stitching the Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre heart etui as a stitchalong project.  This week, I will explain how to make a heart pincushion to go in the heart etui (the embroidery itself was shown in a previous post). See the end of this post for all the information you’ll need to join in!

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I’ve been looking forward to constructing this little pincushion, as I really enjoyed doing the embroidery for it. The padding is made from four layers of quilting wadding, tacked into a heap.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

The embroidered top looks like this, and is cut out, along with the back, with a 3/8 inch seam allowance (not 1/4 inch as the instructions suggest, as that’s too fiddly). Iron Vilene to the reverse of both the front and back pieces, to slightly stiffen them.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

Work two needlewoven bars on the back of the back piece with one strand of Anchor 267 green (substitute) – these will be used later to attach the pincushion to the heart panel.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

Reinforce the V on both pieces with sewing cotton that matches your fabric. Clip the curves along the seam allowance, then turn to the back and tack in place on both pieces. Mitre the points to keep them sharp and neat.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

Using an eight inch length of centimetre wide grosgrain ribbon, fold under 1cm at one end and, starting at the centre V at the top, attach it to the BACK piece using glove stitch. When you reach the starting point, trim the excess ribbon to 1cm and slipstitch it under the folded edge to make a neat join. The instructions don’t show you how to do glove stitch in the magazine, but I found a good diagram here. It’s like a machine zigzag stitch but done by hand, and it’s very strong.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

This is what it looks like once the ribbon has been attached to the back piece all round.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

Then do the same again with the front piece, inserting the padding when you are half way round, and finally remove the tacking stitches.

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

Ta-dah! One completed pincushion!

Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre pincushion

Isn’t that lovely?! My favourite ‘small’ so far!

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The Strawberry Fayre design, plus the complete list of materials, appears in Inspirations magazine number 95The publishers do sell a full materials pack  (not including the mother of pearl ruler though!), but it’s rather expensive, so if you can use your stash, and just fill in with bits and pieces, then so much the better! The magazine is published in Australia – if you live in the UK, as I do, it is cheaper to buy a back copy from Manor House Magazines, and save a lot on the shipping. 

EDIT: The materials pack from Inspirations, and the magazine from Manor House in the UK are not available any more as at March 2018 – I don’t know if any more stocks will be available now, unfortunately. The publishers may bring out a digital pattern pack later, which they sometimes do with popular projects from their magazines, but we’ll have to wait and see…..

To read about this project stitchalong from the beginning, start here. The post about which FABRIC to use is here. The post about the THREAD SUBSTITUTIONS that I made, plus WHERE TO BUY the threads and beads, etc., is here.

To look up all the posts in this series in the sidebar, see under the CATEGORIES list, under: Embroidery / Full size (others’ designs) / Strawberry Fayre heart etui, or use the SEARCH BOX at the top of the blog, and search for ‘Strawberry Fayre’ to get a list of all the posts (but it’s in reverse order, sorry!).

I’d be interested to see images of how your project is progressing – please email large, clear, well-focused images to  Please bear in mind that any images sent may be used in this blog and/or social media such as Facebook or Pinterest.


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2 thoughts on “Carolyn Pearce Strawberry Fayre heart etui 33: how to make a heart pincushion”

    1. It was actually not as fiddly as Carolyn’s thimble holders, which are always incredibly cute when they’re done, but test my patience to the limit while I’m assembling them. But she’s so creative, I just love her designs!

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