Tomato Pincushion Primer Course

Learn to make Tommy the Tomato & the story behind this famous notion. Watch the preview to see all the projects & inspiration included.

Find joy through the art of needle and thread.

If you've ever struggled with ideas to use your collection of vintage notions and treasures, Vintage Modern Makers can help!

This primer offers a chance to upcycle fabrics to make Tommy the Tomato, a character featured in the Mary Frances Sewing Book. I will show you a variety of ways to make this pincushion using wool sweaters, shirting, and vintage linens. You will be inspired by my extensive collection of vintage pincushions, and learn about the history of the pincushion from needlework tools expert, Dawn Cook Ronningen. It’s time to take our beautiful heirlooms and vintage treasures and modernize them for use in our everyday life.

The course includes videos as well as PDF files to download and follow along. Here is what you can expect in this course:

  • Sewing projects include Tommy the Tomato pincushion, a bracelet pincushion, and mini-pincushion projects that make great gifts.
  • Interview with author Dawn Cook Ronningen on the history of the tomato pincushion as well as many other vintage needlework tools
  • Inspiration Album including treasures from my pincushion collection
  • Related articles & an uplifting essay from Mary Brooks Picken's and the Woman's Institute of Domestic Arts and Sciences 
  • Heirloom Art featuring graphics from the Mary Frances Sewing Book to create cards and needle cases
  • A community within the Vintage Modern Makers platform to share your makes, your collection, and connect with others

Course Details

5 Total Video Lessons (total 67 minutes)
 3 Sewing Project Video Tutorials
 Inspirational Album Video featuring project ideas and items in my collection
Textile Expert Audio Interview featuring Dawn Cook Ronningen with Video Gallery
4 Pages Printable PDF pattern, instructions & photos
5 Pages Heirloom Art (8 Thimblefriends images, 4 notecard images, 1 Bonus Sewing Room graphic, 1 page of project ideas)
3 Inspirational Articles - curated content including uplifting essays and vintage articles

Amy Barickman

Amy is a creative arts entrepreneur, author of Vintage Notions, and founder of the sewing pattern company Indygo Junction. With over 30 years of experience, she has collected and curated vintage textiles and art to inspire your modern makes. She is passionate about helping creatives find inspiration for handmade projects to make them easily and cultivate more joy in everyday living with needle and thread!

Hear From Our Community

I am so enjoying your interviews! I can’t wait to get Dawn’s book. This is great fun.🧵🪡


Too cute! And such a surprise to discover the backstory on the humble tomato pin cushion!


A bonus project!

The Mary Frances Sewing Book Adventures Amoung the Thimble People by Jane Eayre Fryer featured this darling image on the inside cover of the book. The graphic states "She spends hours in the sewing room." It's wonderful to either print on fabric and embellish or print on paper and frame. Either way it makes a wonderful addition to your sewing room.

100% Satisfaction Guarantee

We believe you’re investing in your creativity and want you to be 100% satisfied.  We want you to love the courses you take here so we offer this risk-free guarantee.  If you purchase a course and let us know within the first 30 days it’s not what you were expecting we’ll put you in another course (of equal or lesser value) for free.


No, these are self-study courses. When you purchase a course, it can be completed at your own pace. There is no pressure to complete the course in a specific amount of time. You will also have the ability to download the videos and PDFs which gives you lifetime access to the content.

If you purchase a course, you will have lifetime access. This means you can watch the course as many times as you want, and access it at any time. You can download all videos and PDFs and save to your personal device.

All of my courses will be delivered through the website. This is an independent platform that allows for all courses to be easily managed. If you do have an account on you will need to create a separate account for

Our goal is to keep projects as affordable as possible. On average, you might expect to spend around $10–$25 on project supplies, but I encourage you to use fabric treasures from your own collection or thrift shop finds to upcycle.

The site will contain all the videos and downloads that come with your course. As long as you can navigate and log in to the site, you shouldn’t need any extra tech skills.

No need to worry! We offer a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. We believe you’re investing in your creativity and want you to be 100% satisfied. We want you to love the courses you take here, so we offer this risk-free guarantee. If you purchase a course and let us know within the first 30 days it’s not what you expected, we’ll put you in another course (of equal or lesser value) for free.

Purchase now and get instant access!

Tomato Pincushion Course

$38 USD

Buy Now