Another Tumbler Cushion

When I got ready to go to my tumbler cushion workshop with Katy last summer I bought two charm packs to bring. One was Camden Market, the other Happy Go Lucky by Nel Whatmore. In the end I chose to bring Camden Market as the cushion was going to be for Little Miss Bossy Boots and I’m so happy I did. The cushion has been sitting on her bed since and has been brightening up her room. As soon as I got home, though, I started on another tumbler cushion with my Happy Go Lucky charm squares.

I decided to make the tumblers a little smaller so that I would be able to cut out two from each square. Then I added some Kona solids, again from the charm pack that I took to the workshop. I was really happy with how it looked and went to find some fabric for a border. A lovely black cotton with tiny white polka dots was duly ordered and then deemed not right. So the tumblers just sat there until now when I decided that I wanted to finish it. I wasn’t sure how to quilt it but in the end went with straight lines in an aqua colour.

In the end I loved the colours so much that I discarded any thoughts of a border and simply pulled out some ticking for the back.

I inserted a zip for easy washing (you have to with a small child, cat and dog).

The cushion is 22cm x 36cm, not really a size that you find in the shops. However I had a 36cm x 36cm cushion filler that I was able to squish into it. Hey presto I have a very plump little cushion and I love, love, love it.


On Saturday I had a f a b u l o u  s day. Master and I packed Little Miss Bossy-Boots and my sewing machine in the car and set off to drive all the way to Lowestoft. What were we doing there, you might wonder. Well, Master and Little Miss Bossy-Boots went to Africa Alive  while I was on the adventure of my life (ok, that might be a slight exaggeration). In fact, I was off to Patch Fabrics to participate in a workshop to learn how to make a Tumbler Cushion. I know, I know I could have done that down the road from me at our local quilting shop but not with Katy Jones from Fat Quarterly. I have been reading her blog, I’m a Ginger Monkey, for about a year now and when she posted that she was going to offer a workshop I just knew I wanted to do it. And I am so glad I did (even though my hands trembled from sheer excitement for the first half hour).

We were six ladies, all eager to learn how to make a tumbler cushion. I had picked two charm packs (Camden Market and Robert Kaufmann Kona Solids in Bright) and was soon busy cutting out my tumblers. Counting obviously isn’t my strong point as I realised, after I thought I had cut out all 35 of them, that I didn’t have enough and had to go back and cut another four. I found it a little difficult to choose my solids and was grateful for Katy’s suggestions. She picked a couple of colours I wouldn’t have gone for but I can see now how well they go with the others. Then came the fun part, arranging 35 different tumblers into a pleasing pattern. Being a complete novice in the quilting department I asked for Katy’s help as I was a bit stumped. All in all I did well but she suggested that I swap a couple of the solids with some of the patterned ones as they were clustered together. Katy took a picture of the arrangement to check that it was balanced which made it much easier to see.

Next we sewed the tumblers together into rows of seven before sewing the five rows together. I managed to sew two of my rows together the wrong way and thought I would have to unpick everything but luckily for me it wasn’t too unbalanced with the rows reversed and Katy suggested that I just keep going. Phew! After sewing all the tumblers together we added a border and quilted the cushion. I loved it. So calming. All I could think of were my lines. I enjoyed the process of cutting, arranging and sewing but the quilting took the biscuit. Yep, I’m hooked.

Sadly I had to leave before I could finish my cushion. We were running a little late, so when Master and Little Miss Bossy-Boots arrived to pick me up I had only just finished the quilting. As soon as I finish this post, however, I will be upstairs finishing off my cushion. Because I had to leave before getting all the tips and tricks on how to bind my cushion, Katy very kindly offered to email me a tutorial. I’ve just received it and I’m glad I got it as I would have done it differently.

Before I go and finish off my cushion I’ll leave you with a picture of the front of my cushion: