Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial - Part 3

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Bear Creek Quilting Company

2023 Maywood Studio Maker
I am a 2023 Maywood Studio Maker!
Posted by Shari on March 22nd, 2015

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Hello, Friends!  Welcome to Part 3 of my guest post series, featuring the Granny Star quilt block. 

(If you missed Part 1 and 2, you can find them here.)

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Today, I have a new tutorial for you for making a sweet 6 1/2" square pincushion!

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
For this project, I pulled some of the pink and navy prints from the fat quarter bundle of Color Theory by V and Co. for Moda.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
For the grandbaby-sized granny square, we'll be using some tiny pieces,
finishing with a 7" block.

Here's a photo of the layout I used, labeling each piece just once.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
A:  (1)  2" x 2"
B:  (8)  1 1/4" x 1 1/4", pressed in half diagonally*
C:  (4)  2" x 2"
D:  (4)  2" x 2"
E:  (4)  2" x 2"
F:  (12)  2" x 2"

*The star points  are folded, right sides out, diagonally.

Lay out the block pieces,
to keep track of how they will be positioned.
Now is the time to play with the color placement of the D and E pieces,
to come up with a pleasing arrangement.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
The first step is to create the star in the center.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
In my previous posts, Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, I used a stitch-and-flip technique to create the star points.  These little pieces are sooooo tiny, though, that I decided to use a new trick.
Use a scrap of a fusible glue product, such as Heat N Bond Lite, and cut 8 little pieces that are slightly smaller than the folded triangles.  As shown above, use an iron to adhere a snippet of fusible bonding to the back of each triangle.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Now remove the paper from each triangle, to expose the rest of the glue.

This photo shows the glue, which is slightly glossy when the paper is removed.  The two triangles in the back still have their papers on.

 Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Carefully use an iron to fuse each star point into position, creating the center star layout, as shown.  This method avoids distortion of the little 2" square blocks and allows you to have star points that are practically perfect!

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Begin to stitch the block together in rows, pressing seams for each row in alternate directions.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Stitch the rows together to finish the block...spit-spot!

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Trim the finished block to 7" square, being sure to center the block.


Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
And now, let's make a pincushion from the finished block!

First, cut another 7" x 7" square from a complimentary fabric, for the bottom of the pincushion.
{Oh, thank goodness, I can use those navy polka dots I love so much!}

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
The only other fabric needed is a gusset piece, measuring 2" x 26 1/2".
I used another piece of gray background fabric.
Line the granny star block, the bottom, and the gusset piece with fusible interfacing, such as Pellon Shapeflex SF101.  You may be tempted to skip this step, but it truly adds stability to the pincushion.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial

Fold the gusset in half to find the center.  From this line, measure 3 1/4" to each side, and mark the gusset along the top and bottom edges.
Measure 6 1/2" from each set of markings, and mark the top and bottom edges again.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Measure 3 1/4" from those markings, and draw the seamline for the gusset.  Also, along the bottom edge, you may want to mark a 3" opening for turning and stuffing, so you won't forget to leave it unstitched!

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial

Place a dot on the back of the top block, at all 4 corners, to mark 1/4" from each edge.  Repeat for the pincushion bottom.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial

Stitch the gusset seam, as marked, and press open.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Pin the gusset along the top edge of the granny star block, right sides together, using the edge of the gusset that contains the seam.  Match the corner dots with the gusset markings.  Stitch 1/4" from the edges, backstitching to begin and end the seam, sewing only from dot to dot.
{Do not sew to the edges of the squares.}
Continue to stitch the gusset to the block, in the same way, one side at a time, holding the gusset out of the way while stitching near the corners.
Repeat the stitching process for the bottom edge of the gusset, but this time leave a 3" opening along the side with the seam, for turning and stuffing the pincushion.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
TIP:  I always stitch off the edges of the opening, as shown, backstitching, to keep my seam from opening during the turning and stuffing process.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Turn the pincushion right sides out and press gently, if needed.
Stuff the pincushion generously.  If you have some crushed walnuts, they would be fabulous for this pincushion!  I used polyfil to stuff mine.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Hand-stitch the opening closed.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
I use a steam iron to flatten the entire pinnie.  This keeps the bottom nice and flat.  I don't mind a slightly rounded top for my pinnies.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
When it's finished, you can admire it from all angles.

Granny Star Pincushion Tutorial
Stick in some pretty pins, and put this baby to good use in your sewing space!
Thanks so much for following along.  Pop over to my "Amy Made That!" blog any time, to see what else I'm making!

We hope you are enjoying the tutorials and articles our blog contributors are bringing to you.  Each designer invests their time to design and create new project ideas.  Your comments are a wonderful show of appreciation and support.

"Granny Star Pincushion" Tutorial was designed and created for Bear Creek Quilting Company by Amy from Amy Made That by eamylove.
Fabric used in this tutorial is from Color Theory  by V and Co. for Moda.
Do you love free fabric?  Do you love to teach?  Want to be a contributor on our blog?  Send us an email at to get started!
Category: Tutorials


  • 1. Posted by Susie on March 24th, 2015 at 12:34 p.m.
    Such a cute pincushion! I love this size, too. These V & Company fabrics make the granny squares and stars pop with color!! Thank you for the tutorial!!
  • 2. Posted by Lara B. on March 23rd, 2015 at 6:53 p.m.
    PS - it is supposed to say "Great" Tutorial, not "Feat" Tutorial.
  • 3. Posted by Lara B. on March 23rd, 2015 at 6:51 p.m.
    Oh I definitely want to make this pincushion! Feat Tutorial Amy! Very clever construction! Really love the fabrics you chose!
  • 4. Posted by Alicia Key on March 22nd, 2015 at 6:40 p.m.
    Cool trick with the triangles. Reminds me of Lynn Hagemier's Layered Patchwork technique. It isn't the same but it's still a short cut! We love shortcuts!