It was only when I had the idea to make this owl that I found out some people are really averse to using animals as pin cushions. Personally I don’t have an issue with a giant owl pin cushion sitting on my sewing table keeping an eye on what I’m making and offering pins when I need them; if you do, it also have an alternative use as a door stop (incidentally my mum has a frog doorstop that she uses as a pin cushion in her sewing room…it still pains me to say that A: because I don’t have a sewing room of my own and B: because it’s my old bedroom, regardless of the fact I moved out almost a decade ago!)
My lovely friend Lynsey has her own business making beautiful children’s clothes (check out her etsy shop here); needless to say this (along with her two gorgeous daughters keeping her busy) means she makes very little for herself. The owl is the perfect present for her little sewing room!
I made the pattern myself using A4 paper; I folded the paper in half vertically and drew half a pattern, pressing on hard enough with my pen so the other side was indented enough for me to draw over so my pattern was symmetrical. I used glasses in my kitchen for the eyes so I got a perfect circle, although you could also use a compass. I traced the smaller pieces from the main pattern piece to tracing paper (see the photo) so I could easily cut out each component part.
The owl is made up of my fabric stash – the main owl shaped piece is the same material as I used for the girls pinafore dress, which I made for Lynsey’s daughter last month. I appliquéd the chest piece first, followed by the yellow gingham, the green polka dot and then the little nose (which if you look closely is taken from the main fabric also!) I used a zigzag stitch to attach each piece. Lastly I sewed around the edge of my owl (right sides together) with two rows of stitching to make sure it didn’t burst once it was stuffed. I left a small 3″ gap to turn my owl and to stuff it.
I used good quality toy stuffing and glass beads tied in a bag to stuff and weight my owl. I left the stuffing gap at the side of the owl – this meant I could weight the owl properly and also make sure the ears were stuffed properly. Finally, I used two black buttons from my stash for the eyes, which I decided to glue onto my owl.
All in all I’m really pleased with how my owl turned out; it will definitely make a great pin cushion…or door stop! I hope Lynsey has as much fun using it as I have making it!
If you like this, you’ll love my appliquéd beach hut cushion post!
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