Making your own tools to use in your own sewing room can be such a fulfilling feeling as you become surrounded by your creations and achievements.
One thing I am in need of replacing is a pin cushion which I don’t find easy as I feel I can be picky. So I decided to make my own, one thing I wanted to explore more was what the best filling for a pin cushion was.
I read a lot about using a metal filling as it helps keep the pin sharp but wasn’t sure what was best. After doing plenty of research and testing theories on myself I came up with this list to help future pin cushion makers.
6 Best Filling For A Pin Cushion
Most pin cushions are filled with polyester and so they are lightweight and easy to stick a pin or needle into. But these don’t always offer the best care for your pins and needles, you can get fillings that sharpen and prevent rusting.
Here are the best fillings for a pin cushion, I hope you can find one that works for you.
1. Cushion Filling
One of the easiest and cheapest pin cushion fillings is to use cushion filling. You can use an existing cushion you have at home or a store bought one. You can find cushion fillers in homeware stores such as Dunelm Mill, Hobbycraft and The Range.
Pros: The pros of using the cushion filling is that it is soft, light and easy to use. Cheap to buy and acquire when you need it.
Cons: The lightness means it can easily be moved or knocked off the surface.
Alternatively, you can use batting and wadding scraps, pulled apart and fluffed up to create the soft fibers of stuffing.
2. Steel Wool
Using even just a little of the steel wool can be a great filling for a pin cushion. The stainless steel naturally keeps the pins sharp and in good condition with every insertion to the pin cushion.
You can purchase steel wool on places such as Amazon or Hobbycraft, if you do go for finer wool as it is easier to work with and will gently sharpen your pins each time.
Pros: It sharpens pin and needles as you use it and lasts a long time. They are easy to find and can be fairly cheap.
Cons: They can be quite small or hard to manipulate into different shapes. You can, however, use them in conjunction with another material to create the pin cushion.
Rice is a great long life filler for many things such as heat packs, pattern weights and teddy bears. It also makes a great weighted filling for a pin cushion.
Using rice at the bottom of a pin cushion can help it gain some weight to stop it moving easily and make it more solid. It doesn’t need replacing very often and won’t cause a smell.
Pros: They are great to add weight to a pin cushion to make it more study. It is an easy filler to use and cheap to buy.
Cons: Doesn’t hold the cushions as well as the other two, I would suggest using it in conjunction with another material for best results.
4. Fabric Scraps
Holding on to those fabrics scraps for a reason? Well, now you have one, not the usual route to take but it is worth a try.
You can pull them apart a little and make a fluffier feel with the weave and fibers. Stuff as normal into your pin cushion shell.
I advise adding in another component like rice, steel wool or even some batting to help add a little weight.
Pros: Using up the material you already have and it is free.
Cons: Not very weighty or fluffy so would need plenty to fill the pin cushion.
5. Ground Walnut Shells
Ground Walnut Shells are one of the best fillings for a pin cushion as they are readily available and provide weight. They are easy to use and even help sharpen the pins each time they are pulled out.
You can find them in the aisle with cat litter at pet stores such as Pets At Home or even online on Amazon.
Pros: Weighty, readily available and eco-friendly.
Cons: May cause allergies.
6. Plastic Beads
More commonly known for uses in items such as teddy bears, bean bags and weighted blankets. Plastic beads are another alternative to use in your pin cushion. Though traditionally not the best filling for a pin cushion it can be used.
Pros: It gives the pin cushion some weight.
Cons: It can make your pins dull and not very soft to hold.
If you are looking to still have a fairly soft pin cushion, you can use the plastic beads along with a softer material for your pin cushion.
That is everything on my guide for the best filling for a pin cushion. I hope this has been helpful and would love to know if you have any other tried and tested methods and materials. Let me know your suggestions in the comments below.