DIY Pin Cushion in a Vintage Teapot

DIY Pin Cushion in a Vintage Teapot

With my burgeoning love of sewing comes a need for storage for sewing supplies. And one of the things I wanted to have was a cute, functional pin cushion that had one additional feature- secrecy. That may sound crazy, but with a cat as curious as Cottonball, a secret pincushion is not all that far-fetched. And I decided that a vintage teapot would be the perfect thing to upcycle into a DIY pin cushion that could hide in plain sight.

Why a vintage teapot? Well, they’re positively ADORABLE. But also because it would double as a sewing caddy to hold some of my sewing supplies.

I found this vintage teapot at the thrift store. It had a couple of chips which made it perfect for this upcycling idea.

Vintage teapot from the thrift store for upycling into a needle cushion and sewing caddy

Now, I’m sure you’ve seen the countless pincushion ideas that use the body of the teapot as the holder for the pincushion. I guess they toss the lids?

Well, I’m turning that idea upside-down – literally! Because I wanted to make a needle cushion inside the lid.

Upcycling the lid of a vintage teapot into a needle cushion or DIY pin cushion

That way, I can flip the lid upside-down in the vintage teapot whenever I’m working on a project. But when I’m done, I can flip it again so that the teapot is closed and my needle cushion is safely hidden away!

Making a needle cushion or pin cushion to put inside the lid of a vintage teapot

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Sizing a Pin Cushion for the Lid of a Vintage Teapot

Before I did anything else, I needed to determine the size of needle cushion that would fit comfortably inside the lid. 

So, I grabbed some scrap cardboard and traced the inner lip of the lid on the cardboard.

Craft supplies for making a DIY pin cushion in the lid of a small teapot from the thrift store

First, I cut out my cardboard tracing, knowing that it would initially be too large for the lid.

Cardboard base for a needle cushion that will go inside a vintage teapot

I wanted it to barely fit inside the opening, so I trimmed the edges until it went inside on its own (no pushing from me).

Fitting a cardboard base for a pin cushion inside the lid of a small teapot

Now that I had the cardboard base for the needle cushion, I was ready to stuff it!

Finishing a Needle Cushion or DIY Pin Cushion

Next, I gathered a swatch of vintage fabric (from a thrifted pillowcase) and laid it out with the right-side facing down.

Fabric from a vintage bed sheet to be upcycled into a DIY pin cushion as sewing gifts

I took a wad of fiberfilla softball-sized clump- and placed it on the fabric, directly over the pattern area that I wanted to show as my pin cushion.

Then, I balanced my cardboard oval on top of the fiberfill.

Needle cushion for a vintage teapot with fiber fill and a vintage bed sheet

Carefully and with plenty of massaging/finessing, I pulled the corners of the fabric up and carefully pushed and prodded it into place.

The pictures don’t indicate it, but I also ironed the fabric swatch before finishing up!

Then, I wrapped a rubber band around the excess fabric against the cardboard oval as tightly as possible.

DIY pin cushion to go in the lid of a small teapot that will hold the sewing supplies

I tugged the fabric tails to make the needle cushion taut and adjusted it to center the pattern. Then, I trimmed off most of the excess fabric underneath the base.

Trimming the excess cloth of a DIY pin cushion or needle cushion for a vintage teapot

Finally, I dotted the inside rim and concave center of the teapot lid with my favorite super glue and carefully pushed the pin cushion into place.

Adding a needle cushion for sewing supplies in the lid of a vintage teapot

My crazy little idea to create a DIY pincushion in the lid of a vintage teapot WORKED OUT PERFECTLY!

Upcycling the lid of a small teapot into a DIY pin cushion for sewing accessories

DIY Pin Cushion in a Vintage Teapot

I’m absolutely thrilled with the result. Isn’t it delightful?

diy pin cushion

When I’m working on a sewing project, I will keep the pin cushion like this. Nice and steady with easy access to straight pins and needles.

sewing caddy in a vintage teapot

But when I’m done sewing, I’ll replace the lid and hid the pin cushion from curious kitty paws.

vintage teapot as a sewing caddy

AND I will be keeping some of my sewing supplies in the body of the vintage teapot! Which means this entire project would be PERFECT as sewing gifts, right?

A sewing caddy and needle cushion that is functional AND decorative.

Gifts for sewers by upcycling a vintage teapot into a sewing caddy

Plus, this upcycling idea could be used with things other than a vintage teapot. A covered sugar bowl is perfect, too.

cute pin cushion

Either way, I absolutely love my sewing caddy and needle cushion. Not only is it adorable, but I can breathe easily knowing that Cottonball can’t get to those dangerous pins and needles.

diy pin cushion in a vintage teapot

And make sure you check out this other version I made for my blogging friend, The Refashionista, too! She was a sewist who upcycled thrift store clothing into AMAZING new pieces.

Upcycling a vintage canister or vintage sugar bowl as a needle cushion

I’m also excited to announce that my first book is now available! If you enjoy upcycling clothing and simple sewing projects, then you will love my book on flannel crafts!

Craft book for flannel shirts

If you enjoyed this upcycling idea for a vintage treasure, then you’ll also love this idea for shabby chic wall decor!

Framed doilies as shabby chic wall decor

Craft on!


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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.


  1. Wow, what a sweet and creative idea! So pretty!

  2. This is such a wonderful idea! Thank you for sharing it!!

  3. Joyce Frazier says

    This is a wonderful idea and I plan on making one for myself but will also be making some as gifts. Thank you for this marvelous secret pin cushion.

  4. This is brilliant! A friend shared your link with me, and I will be using this idea very soon. Thanks for sharing!

  5. May have to try this. I am a teapot and teacup fanatic!

  6. Thank you for this idea…how clever and how simple! Just the kind of thing I would LOVE to have! am unable to pin to Pintrest, tho. Not sure why.

  7. chris aka monkey says

    absolutely awesome idea love it and i don’t sew ha ha xx

  8. lovely, lovely, lovely – Soooo lovely!

  9. Precious! My mom oases away and I gave my sisters and Neices the teapots but kept a few show loved to sew and I live to crochet, thanks for helping me keep my mothers memory alive.

  10. I couldn’t pin it either. I have a great idea: sell them in your etsy shop. Post when you do.

  11. This is fabulous!

  12. Donna Bailey says

    What a great idea! my granny will love it! I think I`m going to surprise her. Thank you so much for the inspiration! Regards,
    End of tenancy cleaning Islington

  13. I agree – best sewing caddy ever!

  14. What a lovely idea. I am going to have to go teapot hunting.

  15. I saw a wonderful teapot at HomeGoods so if it is on sale, I’ll grab it. Unless I find a cuter one at Goodwill or see if I have one in my stash. It is so cute and I will make a few for gifts.

  16. Such a sweet idea- I have always loved the teacup version. Love this one- I have a similar teapot, but alas, no lid. I love the idea of being able to store goodies inside!

  17. Sarah, BRILLiant. Just brilliant. I want a pin cushion so terribly bad. They are so convenient during a project. Mine, however, are inconveniently stored in a tackle box to keep them safely stored away from my animals. I have had TWO animals…both a dog and a cat ingest needles that got lodged in their stomachs after they swallowed them. After extremely expensive surgeries for the both of them they were fine and I learned my lesson. So the danger of pins and needles around animals IS very real. I am SO excited about this. Can’t wait to find a teapot as cute as yours!

  18. Great idea, I also have a young kitty who loves to eat pin heads… And too many teapots that don’t get used. Brilliant!!

  19. so lovely! what a fun idea and a surprise for those busy bodies that always peek inside tea pots! Hope you will stop by our creative challenge upcycle link party – all about utensils this month!

  20. For years I have had one made from a tea cup with Styrofoam ball and some batting covered with cloth and glued in with braiding! Styrofoam is great. Bought at craft fair about 10 years ago!

  21. Beautiful Such a neat idea

  22. That’s so clever! I love it 🙂

  23. What a great idea! Love it.

  24. Oh my goodness this is so darn cute, I have a fascination with pin cushions,

    I would love for you to stop by and share this article with my readers
    Have a great weekend!

    Oh My Heartsie Girl

  25. This is really precious, thank you for sharing 🙂

  26. Hi, I’ve just come over via Jenny at Elefantz. What an amazing idea! I too will be scouring the secondhand shops for a teapot 🙂

  27. Kathleen says

    This is genius!!

  28. Great idea! If you have (or make) an emery or crushed glass strawberry, you could glue it into the spout so it would be handy for cleaning/sharpening needles and would also seal the spout (and if it stuck out a bit, protect it from chipping).

  29. Jann Olson says

    Oh my gosh, this is just darling! I have no kitties to worry about, but still want to make one! lol! Cute gift idea as well. Thanks for sharing with SYC. I will be featuring you next week.

  30. Absolutly love this, what a perfect gift this will make for my friend !!!!
    Thank you !!!!!!

  31. I love this idea! And I have several tea pots I could do this with.

  32. I love this! A friend recently gave me a teapot almost exactly like this one and now I know exactly what to do with it. Thanks for sharing your great idea.

  33. This is so cute and clever – You nailed this this project perfectly. I have a teapot from my grandma that I might have to try this with. Great article.

  34. Just moved Into an independent living apartment with several other likeminded women in residence at this complex. Now I can see many lovely teapot pin cushions for gifts in my future. Thank you so very much for sharing your creation! Just love it.

  35. Brilliant! Brilliant I say!! Pinning to share!

  36. Brilliant!!! I have the perfect teapot for this!! xxx

  37. Sarah – this teapot turned pincushion is sooo stikin’ cute! I love what you did with it. Thanks for linking up to Catch as Catch Can, catching you!

  38. Next time I find a pretty teapot I’m doing this! Thanks… I might have to make a ouple actually and send the other one to my Nanna!

  39. What a fabulous idea. I make them from teacups but never thought to use the teapot!

  40. BRILLIANT idea – absolutely fabulous and I am so (sew, snicker snicker) doing this!

    Love the idea. Thanks so much.

  41. ashandcrafts says

    This is the cutest idea ever! Thanks so much for sharing with us at the Merry Monday link party. Hope to see you again next week. Shared your post on Twitter!

  42. Oh, awesome! I have an old teapot that was my great-great grandmas, and while I wont be doing this to the pot (she brought it over from England when she immigrated), I lucked into the matching creamer and sugar bowl at the antique store. I think I will do this with the sugar bowl!

  43. This is so cute. I’m sitting at my kitchen counter looking at a teapot on the shelf. Guess what I’ll be doing this weekend? Thank you for the tutorial.

  44. That is seriously genius!! Love love this idea! Thank you so much for sharing this on Making Memories Mondays! Hope to see you back Sun night 9PM EST! 🙂

  45. Just saw this on The Quilt Show ( web site. LOVE IT! Got to hit the thrift store today so I can make one. Do I neeeeeed one? No. Do I have to have one………? YES! Thank you for the tutorial.

  46. I love it! And I all ready have the perfect tea pot to make one!! Thanks for this wonderful, and useful, idea.

  47. I bought 3 larger teapots from the local thrift store and they just sit on the shelf looking pretty. Now they can be pretty and functional at the same time. What a great idea! How about those cookie jars. Now that is mega pin cushion and storage.

  48. Elizabeth Little says

    That’s brilliant!! I am dropping everything to make one now!

  49. Great idea. I have a small to medium collection of unique tea pots and this will be great when they are sitting around my sewing area or even for when I am watching television in my family room or any room in the house. Thanks for posting this.

  50. How thoughtful to be aware of the curiosity of the cat. I too had a cat who loved to pull pins from the pincushion. This is the perfect solution to having your pins within reach, but out of sight when they are not needed. I love the repurposing of someone’s cast off teapot. My tea loving/sewing friends would all love these. Thanks for the creative idea!!!

  51. Precious! I can think of half a dozen friends who would love this! Thanks.

  52. Diane Howell says

    This would be perfect for a beginner sewer. Just add small scissors, thread, thimble, needles, safety pins, straight pins and maybe a few buttons…instant sewing kit! Too Cute.

  53. This is brilliant! Thanks for linking up at the Stitch It, Blog It, Share Link Party. I hope you’ll join us every Sunday night at 7 with more of your creative sewing projects.
    ~Bonnie @ Behind the Seams Sewing

  54. Diana Lassahn says

    This idea suits me to a ‘tea’!

  55. I love love love this idea!! I’ve got a Craft Gossip post scheduled for tomorrow morning that links to your tutorial: –Anne

  56. OK, this is beyond clever! I love it! Thank you for sharing on Fiber Tuesdays!

  57. Lori Lewis says

    I will make one for my mom ☺ ty

  58. Jaw drop… Sarah, this one surprised me. What an incredible idea to make with all those teapots sitting in the thrift stores! LOVE this so much!

    Sharing on Party Junk this weekend. 🙂

  59. SharonFromMichigan says

    Oh Sarah, this is such a wonderful/beautiful idea. Would you mind if I borrowed your idea for our church Christmas Bazaar? The ladies are always looking for new craft ideas and I can already see Christmas teapots (from thrift stores of course) used for this purpose. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Hi, Sharon- of course!! The best way you can thank me is to tell everyone where you saw the idea first. Word of mouth is my blog’s best friend. 🙂 Thank you so much for asking!!

  60. Sweat a lovely idea,you are so clever

  61. Judy Lipcsak says

    I have plans to make some tea cup pin cushions for a few friends. This is way cooler!

  62. Sara –
    What an awesome project! We love it! Thank you for sharing at Dream. Create. Inspire. Link! You’re one of our features this week! I hope we’ll see you there again this evening!


  63. I love, love, love this idea!! We’re featuring it at Dream. Create. Inspire. Link. tonight, and I’m off to go make my own. 🙂 It’s such a great idea – as are all of your upcycled projects!!

  64. Harriette Johnson says

    Just curious…. do you know the pattern of the tea pot? It looks like my Mother’s pattern. I have never seen the teapot though. It is very pretty and a great gift idea.

  65. Kathleen Dunagan says

    Such a cute idea! And I really love the teapot you found. I am a collector-can you tell me the brand and pattern of the one shown. I love the design.

  66. What a cute idea! Thanks for sharing at Inspiration Thursday! Have a great week!

  67. Wonderful idea–I love it! And the teapot is so pretty!

  68. Love it so much!

  69. That is the cutest idea I have seen for some time , I seen it featured on Bella Rosa

  70. Lynda Maram says

    Love this, how about pulling thread through the spout, or using the spout as a small scissors. Thank you for getting my imagination in high gear. Happy New Year.

  71. Such a cute idea!! Great “technical ” tutorial…just the kind I like!!

  72. Love it! I recently bought a sewing machine with table teapot at a second hand store. It was so cute and just had to have it for my sewing rom. Well now it’s going to be cuter and functional because of you. Thanks for the great idea!

  73. Sadie, as soon as I saw what you did I made one too! Mine is made from a large antique china sugar bowl that I love but didn’t have any place to display. Now it can be out being shown off and making my sewing room just a little more tidy. ( I have a cat like yours who likes to pull pins out of the pin cushion. Sorry Charley, you can’t do that anymore!

  74. What a neat idea! I am visiting from The Creative Circle and I’m so glad I did. Great blog!

  75. Belinda casrson says

    Great idea. Love it!!!!

  76. this is so cute and I collect teapots,
    so I’ll be turning one into a sewing
    kit. thanks for the great idea

  77. This is so creative and pretty! Love it. Thanks for sharing at The Creative Circle. xoxo

  78. Oh wow! What a cute idea!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  79. This is a wonderful idea. Not only do I want to make me one but this is a nice gift for anyone who sews.

  80. Anne Dunkley says

    My 94 year old mother has collected teapots for many years – we’ve always tried to think of a useful way to share them with family. Thank you so much for a beautiful idea.

  81. handmade by amalia says

    A sweet idea.

  82. Um, okay, Sarah? You. Are. Brilliant. I literally gasped when I saw it!

  83. Love this idea and anyone could do it with the simple tutorial you provided. Thank you for sharing your clever idea at Vintage Charm. sb

  84. Gail Loster says

    I love this!!!! I was so impatient that I could only find a “sugar bowl” but when I got home found out it used to have Este Lauder face cream in the jar so I made it!!! Smaller but nice too!

  85. This is such a great idea. I love the look.

  86. its a great idea, love this

  87. I commented before but this is so unique and so darling, I just love it. Great inspiration!
    Thank you for sharing on the #OMHGWW
    Have a great week!

  88. Debbie Loyer says

    This is absolutely brilliant! I love it!! I don’t have a cat, but I just might have to make one of these for myself!!

  89. You must have seen my Instagram video of my daughter’s kitten Bean removing pins from my pin cushion with her teeth! This solves that problem… now if only I can stop her jumping at the moving iron cord..

  90. Good intructions! Thank you! I have a clear glass teapot that i want to put a pin cushion into. Do you know how i can make one that looks clean + finished on all sides ? Thank you!

  91. Dear Sarah,

    I have a Spanish blog where I share ideas like yours , and I have recently published in it this wonderful pincushion post you created with all credits to you, links to your page and images leading to your blog.
    I have allowed myself to do that because most of my readers cannot understand English. You can find this post in my blog :

    Many thanks,

  92. michelleoblogoff says

    Such a brilliant idea!
    I’ll be using this one for sure!

  93. Very clever and absolutely darling!! Thanks for sharing at Throwback Thursday!


  94. The Tea Pot looks so easy but it takes a smart person like you to figure that out. Thank you for sharing this idea.

  95. Frances Blockley says

    I love teapots collect them and I love your idea thanks

  96. I just found this on pinterest and love it! I remember making pincushions in Girl Scouts out of Mason jar lids. We used Brillo pads as the stuffing. My leader, who just happened to be my mom and a seamstress, said the brillo pads would help keep the needles clean and sharp. I will be making one of these for both my mom and mother in law for Christmas! What a great idea! Thanks!

    • Yes, I’ve heard the same thing! I didn’t want to use steel wool because I was using a delicate fabric (a vintage bed sheet). But if I was using something sturdier, I’d use the steel wool I have leftover from another project. 🙂

  97. Kathy A. says

    Love it. Love the idea of filling the pot with small supplies (I love buttons!). Using the bouquet motif from the pillowcase added to the vintage interest. Less than perfect teapots can sometimes have a silk flower glued over the mend or a ribbon tied on. Tiny nicks in spouts can be sanded and given a few coats of clear nail polish or acrylic paint, then nail polish. Lots of my treasures are walking wounded or “shelf pieces.” Love them anyway!

  98. This is so very pretty..I want to make one for me,

  99. Kathy A. says

    I loved someone’s idea of a cookie jar: that might ALMOST be enough space for some of my button stash! A teapot can hold buttons, the cards of snaps and hooks & eyes I am always putting somewhere “safe” and then forget where! Even zippers.

    • Sadie Seasongoods says

      I’ve definitely made them out of sugar bowls for smaller versions, but yes- anything with the type of lid that has a cavity would be perfect!

  100. Oh my, how gorgeous and very practical. Thanks for sharing

  101. I love this idea! I collect tea pots and I will definitely do this with one of them. I too have a curious cat who loves my sewing items.

    • Sadie Seasongoods says

      Thanks, Brenda!! I just made a new one to give my mom for Mother’s Day, too- great gifts for fellow sewists/tea-lovers. 🙂

  102. Jackie Heath says

    I absolutely adore this little pincushion teapot! I have made pinchushion teacups, also. But, knowing me, I am afraid that I would knock this little pretty off the table! lol

  103. Annette Wells says

    Love your way of gathering it with a rubber band. I just made one with a vintage large sugar shell, it came out perfect! Thank you!

  104. I absolutely love this and am planning on making these as welcome gift bags for my sister’s wedding. What kind of paint did you use? Are of my paint is water soluble, and I am worried that the paint will eventually run or fade if water gets on it. Did you seal the paint somehow afterwards? Thank you!!!

    • Sadie Seasongoods says

      I think you might have left this comment on the wrong post? There was no paint used on my pin cushion project.

  105. I love this tea kettle transformed into
    A pin cushion

  106. Sharon Marlowe says

    I love this idea! This will make a great gift idea. I love looking around in antique shops and Good Will. Gives you a different way to look at things!

  107. Pamela Rabon says

    wonderful idea I’m English and have teapots all the time I will use one and proudly have it on my sewing table thanks for the tutorial

  108. Piper Stephens says

    How precious is this idea! My mother had several teapots and I had no idea what I could do with them. This would make a special gift for my girls and my cousins!

  109. OMG – love it! Too pretty!


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