Wandering blithely through the costume department to the kitchenette to make a cuppa at rehearsal last night, I noticed that the costumer’s sewing machines all had these little velcro-on pincushions attached to them. “Egads!” I cried. “This is the best idea since the little pincushions you velcro around your wrist! And it’s kind of the same! Why didn’t I think of this myself?” Though, admittedly when I sew I adopt the mindless determination of a zombie gnawing on some poor bugger’s frontal lobe, so I guess it’s not surprising I never made the connection. Anyway, I improvised my own little dodgy pincushion this morning out of an old unfinished dress (in a poly-cotton print so ghastly I’m wondering if I was quite well when I chose it) and a heap of fabric scraps, inspired by Cation Designs’ recent Mountain plushies, which are SO CUTE and stuffed with scraps: http://cationdesigns.blogspot.co.nz/2013/01/purple-mountain-majesties.html She makes squids too! They’re squee-worthy.
Okay, enough fan-girl-time. On with the pincushions.Here are my little shapes. They are fairly basic and when sewn together they made a shape like a little crown, or maybe a Mongolian hat (though I’m pretty sure Attila the Hun wouldn’t be seen dead in florals). All I did was make sure that the bottom of the quasi-triangular shape was 1/4 the circumference of the circular base, and checked the top point with a set-square to make sure it was a 90° angle (to get a nice flat top. If I wanted to dress my sewing machine up as Madonna in some sort of weird sewing-machine cosplay moment, maybe 90° wouldn’t have been the best option, but I didn’t so 90° it was.)
Having added the scraps (which as you can see have come from all kinds of sources and have all kinds of content from cotton to silk to poly to acetate. I hope it doesn’t matter too much), and slipstitched the bottom shut, it looks vaguely like a little cricket ball.
Then all it needed were some little straps, which I tied nice and snug around my machine (seeing I didn’t have velcro and am too much of a cheap-arse to go and buy some). The fabric looks way better as a craft item than it did as a dress. Though I’m tempted to make a stand-alone Peter Pan collar out of it too, just because it’s a law of the universe that I die a la the Wicked Witch of the West if I’m caught out in public in a jumper without a little collar sticking out of it.
Seeing this was a kind of stash-busting, and I’d estimate the cost of the materials was something to the order of 0.5 cents, I’m going to say this was pretty much free. HOORAY! It is a well-documented fact that uni students love free stuff. It took me all of ten minutes, and it’s made me consider maybe using other bits of scrap fabric for the purposes of plushness, which in the long run can only be a good thing. The thought of collars has also made me think of little blouses. It’s damn near pointless for me to make dresses (except for performance gear) because my wardrobe is about 80% vaguely retro blouses and 20% jeans. And seeing as I’ve pretty much fulfilled my ballgown quota for this year (ALREADY! Maybe I’ll do a looking-back-style post about it soon, it was a doozey!), there’s no more reason.
To round off, here is Stash-Buster again to once again extol the noble joys of stash-busting.