Self Assembly Required

DIY dressmaking + crafts with Emily

Mini project 5: Cactus pin cushions – DIY tutorial

I am ridiculously un-greenfingered. I manage to kill off all my houseplants with alarming regularity and even killed off my tiny succulents which aren’t supposed to need much looking after!

So I’m going faux green instead. Fake plants all the way!

And I’m starting with some felt cactus pin cushions!

(I used the pots from my dead succulents for these 😯 …)

Want to make your own?

Then do this!


Felt – greens and browns (add some colour if you want to add a bloom on top!)

Embroidery floss (or regular thread if you prefer)

Stuffing – I used an old pillow for stuffing

Hot glue gun

Mini flower pots


Ready, set, sew!

– Cut out your felt shapes for each type: tall and thin (A) – 4 x long fingers; pumpkin shaped (B) – a big circle; round segmented cactus (C) – 6 x round ovals. Your exact sizes would depend on the size of the pot your putting these in to! You can make them as big or small as you like! 

(Ignore my light green petal shapes. I made them too big so they didn’t fit into my pots!)

For A:

Take 2 fingers and blanket stitch together from the base to the tip on one side.

Pick up your next finger and continue to blanket stitch that to one of the raw edges.

Carry on with the 4th finger in the same manner and then finish off by stitching the last raw edge to the first finger.

For B:

Make a running stitch all along the edge of the circle and gather it together

For C:

Put your 6 pieces into 3 matching pairs.

For each pair, stitch around the edge, leaving the base open.

Place the 3 stitched pairs on top of each other and stitch down the middle. A simple running stitch will do.

– Now it’s time for stuffing! For the first two types, it’s easy to get the stuffing in place. For C you may need to get something thin to help poke the stuffing into place. I used the end of a crochet hook.

– Cut out circles of brown felt using the tops of the pot as a guide

– I put more stuffing into my pots but you can also turn these into weights but putting uncooked rice/ pebbles/ something heavy etc. in them instead

– Get your glue gun out and attach the brown circle over the top of the pot. It’s good to have these a bit inside the pot.

– Attach your cactus to the circles and pots with glue to secure.

– Add some coloured embroidery floss or a small cut out of a coloured felt to the top tip of the cactus to recreate a flower if you like! I’ve just added coloured pins to mine!

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  1. I love this! I have a friend who is just getting started in embroidery, loves all things southwest, and has a birthday coming up. This could be the perfect gift!

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