The Strawberry On Your Pin Cushion (Video)

The tomato pin cushion is ubiquitous — you have one, your mom has one, everyone has one! We’re all very familiar with that famous red pin cushion. BUT did you know that the little dangling strawberry (or chilli pepper) on it actually has a pretty neat purpose?

Watch below for the best sewing trick related to the good ol’ tomato pin cushion or if you want more sewing tips, check out this compilation of sewing advice. And if you’re wondering why the tomato pin cushion is a tomato at all, Martha Stewart has the answer for you.


Now here’s a little sewing fun fact for you.

You know the little strawberry on the end of your pin cushion?

This is a standard tomato pin cushion that you probably have in your sewing kit; there is – some people think it’s a strawberry, some people think it’s a chili pepper attached to the end; either way, it’s filled with emery.

So that same emery that you use to file your nails, you can use to sharpen your pins. So if you have a pin that’s dull, you can toss it or you can poke it through the emery and sharpen it back up again.

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79 responses to “The Strawberry On Your Pin Cushion (Video)”

  1. Laura says:

    The problem with this is the design is from the Victorian Era. Modern pins are both cheap and plated and the Emery will ruin the plating. Not a big deal as a fun experiment with pins that are presumably already dull and in need of replacing, but obviously annoying. History without context and the spreading of information without really understanding it has become a much bigger problem with the distance it spreads with modern communication. It’s not dangerous with something like this, but it still something to consider as it normalizes this. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people in a I’m sure good intentioned attemptvto teach show people how to stuff an entire pincushion with steel wool to keep pins sharp. It’s not a big deal, but the lack of thought is irritating. Pin cushions are stuffed with wool or cotton roving to keep the pins from rusting in humidity. Even stainless steel rusts when damp and pressed up against other metal.
    Anyway… That was my semi-ridiculous pincushion rant. The Canadian election is in a week and I really needed to be annoyed about something that isn’t actually important for a change.

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