Lately I have really been into two things, crocheting and pin cushions. Crocheting, because I can comfortably sit on my sofa, yet keep my hands busy. Pin cushions because they are small, useful, and unique. I recently learned how to crochet a granny square by following the very detailed instrucionts here at Crochet Cabana. Since I had some Red Heart Super Saver yarn and an I size crochet hook on hand, that is what I used. I started by making one color granny squares, but let's face it, they just don't have the charm of the multicolored ones. Learn how to change colors here. I just figured it out myself, which ended up being their method 2.
After you make your granny square, you will need a back for the pin cushion. I kept it simple with just a regular single crocheted square. Start by making a chain the same length as your granny square. My chains ended up being about 13-14 stitches long. Then I added rows of single crochet until I had a square. Try to get the size as close to your granny square as possible, but if you are a little bit off, it will be OK.
Before you get going joining your squares together, you will need to make a lining for the filling. I just used some off white fabric, muslin would be good too. My granny squares measured about 4 inches square, so I cut my fabric peices 5 inches square. I wanted to make sure they were good and plump. You will need to cut two squares, per pincushion. With right sides together, sew a 1/4 inch seam allowance around the edge, leave about a two to three inch opening on one side. You may want to slightly round the corners as you sew them, something that I wish I would have done. Now turn your cushion right side out and fill will fiberfill. (You could also fill it with sand or wood shavings.) I like mine nice and plump, so stuff it in there, making sure you get the corners. Close the opening with a simple whip stitch.
Now we can get back to your granny squares. Stack a granny square and a single crocheted back piece on top of each other with the best sides facing out. Starting at one corner, single crochet the pieces together on three sides. I used some discretion while doing this. If my back seemed to long I would skip a stitch in it here and there to ease them perfectly together. Do the same thing to the granny square if it is too long.
With your crochet hook carfully wedged in the last stitch you created, nestle your filled lining into the hole, then finish up your single crochets.
Viola, what an awesome pincushion. Don't you love the sunny colors?
If you are new to crocheting, or just need to brush up on your stitches, I liked the instructions found here at Lion Brand Yarn.
Here are the official crochet language instructions for making a granny square. This includes three rows, which is what I used for my pincushions, but I think real granny squares have four rows.
Pattern:ch 5, join with a sl st to form a ring.
Round 1: Chain-3, yo, make 2 dc in ring, ch 3, * 3dc in ring, ch 3* rep from * twice, join with a sl st to top st of beg ch-3
Round 2: Sl st in ea of next 2 dc, sl st in ch-3 sp, then in same sp wk (ch 3, 2 dc, ch 3, shell) (first corner),ch 1, in next ch-3 sp wk (shell, ch 3, shell) (2nd corner), ch 1, in next ch-3 sp wk (shell, ch3, shell) (3rd corner), ch 1, in next ch-3 sp wk (shell, ch3, shell) (4th corner)ch 1, join with sl st to top of beg ch-3.
Note: At this point, you will have 8 shells. Each corner will have 2 shells separated by a chain-3 space. You will also have a chain-1 space separating your corners from each other.
Note: You will always put 3 chains between your corner shells. Remember that a shell consists of 3 double crochets.
Round 3: sl st in ea of next 2 dc, sl st in ch-3 sp, ch3, 2dc, ch3, shell in same sp where you just slip stitched (1st corner made),ch 1, shell in ch-1 sp between groups to form side, ch 1, in next corner ch-3 sp work (shell, ch 3, shell), (2nd corner)ch 1, shell in ch-1 sp between groups to form second side, ch 1, in next corner ch-3 sp work (shell, ch 3, shell), (3rd corner)ch 1, shell in ch-1 sp between groups to form third side, ch 1, in next corner ch-3 sp work (shell, ch 3, shell), (4th corner)ch 1, shell in ch-1 sp between groups to form fourth side, ch 1, join with sl st to top of ch-3.
Note: This round now has 12 shells (3 on each side). You are adding 4 shells each round. Each round will have one more shell on each side.