Review

London Bus pin cushion review by Crafty Nana

I bought this kit from Hobby Craft a while back and it came in this adorable little
pink box which could be described as a mini suitcase to keep everything in. This proved to be really handy as there are lots of little pieces to this kit which are easy to lose! It comes with everything you need (except scissors and pins) and all the felt is pre-cut saving you having to cut out lots of tiny windows! It also includes a very detailed instruction booklet with big pictures and clear instructions which is easy to follow.
First you sew all the windows and external features on, this was probably the most time consuming part with 27 little windows to stitch. I ended up gluing the windows on first with PVA as I found they were too small to pin and ended up a bit wonky (you might be able to see this in the windows at the front and back of the bus). The next part was stitching the wheels, I was slightly concerned about how the bus would stand up on 4 pieces of felt so I reinforced the wheels with some plastic from a drinks bottle cut to size. Whether this was actually needed or not I don’t know but I didn’t want to find out when I had finished as it would’ve been very tricky then to add the support!
Then the fun bit – stitching it all together! I did all of this in one afternoon sat out in the sun however, it was a good 4 hours I spent on it… There were times when I wasn’t convinced the pieces were cut to the right size and I was going to have a huge gaping hole somewhere but it all fitted nicely together in the end. I will admit that initially I didn’t pin it – the instructions got you to sew the first few steps in 3D and I did it in 2D and then opened it up which worked well until I got to stitching the top on which did require pins!
Finally the last step – stuffing it! This was the easiest part although I wasn’t too sure on how firmly to stuff it. As it was advertised as a pin cushion my initial thought was to stuff it quite firmly but the instructions said not too, otherwise I suspect the bus would’ve ended up rather rotund… I ended up stuffing it quite softly which isn’t my personal preference for pin cushions so this might end up being a ornamental piece rather than a pin cushion!
I would recommend this kit to anyone who wants a challenge, inexperienced sewers and experienced sewers alike. For those with little experience in hand sewing it will be great practise for those slightly larger projects in the future! For the more experienced sewer, although it might be quite simple in principle it’s great practice for those skills that may not be used often!
Unfortunately this kit isn’t available directly from the developers website as they only sell to retailers (such as Hobby Craft) however they do state that they would be happy to help you find a store near you where they are sold. There are a number of other kits shown on their website from felt cakes to candles and biscuits – I love the variety that they have come up with, simple easy to follow kits covering a range of crafty skills which anyone can do! If you want to take a look for yourself at their other products then follow the link here!
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