So what are these “make-do” things anyway?
I first heard about a make-do when I got interested in doll-making and was immersed in learning everything I could about vintage and antique cloth dolls. The same people who were talking about the dolls, were interested in all kinds of historical needlearts. The definition I came away with was- a make-do is a pincushion made from a household object that is no longer functional for it’s original purpose- Like a sugar bowl without a lid, a damaged candle stick, a goblet stem with no bowl, or a chipped or cracked cup.
I have been making mine, which I call tiny worlds, in teacups, most of which come from the thrift store. I am also lucky enough to have friends who think of me before they throw out something that I might use- Lucky me! My tiny worlds are made on wool balls, covered with wool fabric and then most of the detail work is done with embroidery and wool felt. It is a wonderful way to use up little pieces and scraps around my studio. And it is so much fun to imagine who lives on the miniature landscape.
I didn’t start out with teacups though. My first make-do was made from a broken goblet. Excuse the photo please- that blog post was from my early blog days, more then 5 years ago! Here are some links to other ones I’ve made and also to a basic tutorial on how to make one for yourself. If you’d like to try your hand at a tiny world make-do, the pattern is available here in my Etsy shop.