Monday, 1 June 2015

With This Ring - Upcycled Tutorial Featured in Hazed Magazine

This sweet little ring bearer’s cushion can be made as a keepsake, by using treasured items from the bride and groom. Perhaps a favourite tie the groom was given by his grandfather, or a vintage button from the bride’s button stash handed down from her granny. Or even clothes from the couple’s wardrobe that are no longer worn. All can be repurposed and easily made into a cushion for wedding rings. You can also look for inspiration in local op shops – for colours or patterns that compliment the wedding. If the wedding party is getting outfits made you could ask for any leftover fabric/embellishments and construct a cushion that will coordinate perfectly. You are only limited by the theme of the wedding and your imagination.

If you are a beginner to the world of sewing, then stick to a simple square or circle cushion, with a button stitched on in the centre, and ribbon to attach the rings. You can use the instructions below, without adding the bunting.

Bunting Cushion
Skill level: heading towards intermediate level
Sewing machine and matching threads
Sewing scissors
Felt scraps
Ric-rac or narrow bias binding
Sewing needle
Sewing pins
Tailors chalk or a light pencil
Iron and ironing board
Circle template (eg a dinner plate or bowl)
Piece of card (eg cereal box or shoe box weight)

What to do:

Place your template on your fabric and draw 2 circles. Cut them out.

Now draw a triangle template on your card the size you want the bunting flags.

Place the template on the felt scraps, draw around and cut out, until you have enough flags.

Arrange the flags on the top circle into a curve. Make sure the bunting starts and finishes at least 1.5cm away from the edge of the circle, so you do not catch it when you sew the circles together.

Carefully pin the flags down and slowly sew along the top edge, stopping after each one to make sure the next one is in place.

Now sew your bias binding or ric rac over the top of the stitching line (don’t use ribbon as it doesn’t curve well).

Before attaching the top and bottom circles together, you can pin the buntings up and away from the stitching line if you are worried about catching them when you sew the seam.

Place the top and bottom circles together with the right sides facing each other. Sew with a straight stitch around the circle, 1cm from the edge. Remember to leave a 5 – 7cm opening to allow for stuffing.

Carefully clip around the circle every 1cm or so, to ensure you get a nicely curved circle.

Now stitch around the circle again, just inside the first straight stitch you did. This is to reinforce the seam so it doesn’t pull away at the clipped points. You can now trim the seam allowance from 1cm down to 5mm. If you want you can neaten the circle edges together with a zig zag stitch.


Time to turn the cushion by pulling it through the stuffing hole. Once it’s out the right way give it a gentle press with the iron. If the circle is slightly straight in places you can turn it inside out and re-clip it, till the seam has an even curve.

Now stuff the cushion. I used wool filling from an old cot mattress (I washed it first), but you can also use Dacron (the filling used in pillows). Once you have the fullness you want, close up the opening. Fold the seam allowance under, and use a small hand stitch with needle and thread. Now work the stuffing around to fill out the cushion evenly.

Lastly you can stitch on a ribbon, twine or embroidery thread to attach the rings. Make sure this is securely fastened to the cushion with needle and thread, as you do not want the rings to come off.

Now the page boy is all set with a beautifully upcycled cushion, that compliments the wedding and can become a treasured keepsake of a special day. Here are some more examples that have been made from a mix of vintage linen and fabrics, doilies, upcycled clothing, and new fabric

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