ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Sew a Suffolk Puff Tablecloth!

Updated on September 18, 2010

Suffolk Puffs

Easy to sew and economical to make, traditional Suffolk Puffs can be stitched together to create colourful and surprisingly beautiful tablecloths.

They are great for anyone new to sewing or textile crafts, as they require only basic skills.  They are also very portable, so it's a craft you could do on a train journey or while half-watching TV, for example. 

If you are looking for economical gifts for family and friends, Suffolk Puffs may be the solution, as they can be sewn into any shape.  So if a tablecloth seems like too big a project, how about making a table runner or a cushion cover instead.  The method of making Suffolk Puffs does not differ for any of these projects.

Suffolk Puffs can be sewn into any shape.
Suffolk Puffs can be sewn into any shape.
A mug is the perfect size for making Suffolk Puff templates.
A mug is the perfect size for making Suffolk Puff templates.

How to Make Suffolk Puffs

 You will need:-

  • cotton fabric
  • a large cup or mug
  • paper
  • pen
  • scissors
  • sewing pins
  • sewing needle
  • cotton thread

Soft cotton fabric works the best for  making Suffolk Puffs, though satin can be used too.  End-of-roll cuts are fine for crafting projects like this, and will prove more economical too.  The fabric in the photographs depicting how to make Suffolk Puffs came from a manufacturer's sample which had four pieces of the same pattern but with different colours predominant in each.  The pattern did not appeal to my tastes but the range of colours did - and once the Suffolk Puffs are made then patterns are obscured anyway.

Your choice of colours is entirely down to your own taste (or the fabric available.) 

Take a large cup or mug and place it upside-down on paper, then draw round to rim.  You can use old magazines or re-use typing paper if you wish.  Using newspaper isn't such a good idea as the newsprint rubs off onto the fabric. 

Pinning paper disks to fabric.
Pinning paper disks to fabric.

Cutting out Suffolk Puffs

Cut out your paper circles, then pin these to the fabric and cut them out.  You can cut out several layers of cloth at once to reduce time, and if you use two or trhee pins per circle then the cloth won't skate around so much when you're cutting.

How many to make is up to you.  Most Suffolk Puff projects require a large amount of individual Puffs.  On the unlikely chance you make too many, store these safely then use them in another project later.

 

Cutting out the fabric for Suffolk Puffs.
Cutting out the fabric for Suffolk Puffs.

Creating the "Puff"

Paper blunts scissor blades over time, and so it is advisable to keep a pair of scissors solely for cutting fabric. Sewing needles go blunt after a while too, and a sharp point makes sewing easier.

Once you have cut out a small pile of fabric circles, you are then ready to begin making Suffolk Puffs, which is an incredibly easy - though time-consuming - process.

Take one circle of fabric, and turn over a small hem. Cast on, then sew the hem down using loose running stitches. Don't make your stitches too small.

An easy running stitch secures the hem on Suffolk Puffs.
An easy running stitch secures the hem on Suffolk Puffs.

Get Ready to Puff!

Once the hem is stitched, gently pull on the thread to pucker-up the fabric. Gently tease it into place if you need to, to create a "puff" of fabric.

Cast off carefully - then make a hundred more!

Drawing tight the hem to form a Suffolk Puff.
Drawing tight the hem to form a Suffolk Puff.
Stitching Suffolk Puff together to form a tablecloth.
Stitching Suffolk Puff together to form a tablecloth.

Joining Suffolk Puffs

When you have created a large pile of individual Suffolk Puffs, now it is time to begin joining them together. This is a very easy process. Take two, hold them face-to-face then cast on, do a few tight stitches on the same spot, then cast off.

Link them together in rows, then link the rows, and you find the body of the tablecloth grows rapidly. You might choose to make a pattern using rows of colour, like I did with the tablecloth photographed at the top of this page, or you may prefer to simply revel in a myriad of chaotic colour - the choice is totally yours.

Care for Suffolk Puffs

Never put any Suffolk Puffs project in the washing machine. Launder by hand, and you will enjoy your Suffolk Puff tablecloth for many years to come.

© 2010 Adele Cosgrove-Bray

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • AdeleCosgroveBray profile imageAUTHOR

      Adele Cosgrove-Bray 

      7 years ago from Wirral, Cheshire, England.

      That's true; I've got another Suffolk Puffs project on the go, and this is easily stored in a plastic lunch box.

    • profile image

      4youreyes 

      7 years ago

      What a fun way to make a project you can sit and sew these at night when your relaxing and you won't have things scattered from one end of the table to the other.EXCELLENT job on the instructions you made them so easy to follow I now have one more project to do thanks.Have A Good Day !

    • AdeleCosgroveBray profile imageAUTHOR

      Adele Cosgrove-Bray 

      8 years ago from Wirral, Cheshire, England.

      Thank you, Icbenefield; I'm glad you enjoyed ths page. Yes, they're easy to make - a child could do them readily.

    • lcbenefield profile image

      lcbenefield 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      I enjoyed reading your piece. My mom makes these and calls them yo-yos. She's made vests, dolls, pillow covers, etc. They are fun to make and very easy.

    • AdeleCosgroveBray profile imageAUTHOR

      Adele Cosgrove-Bray 

      8 years ago from Wirral, Cheshire, England.

      Oh, I agree, Tracy - for nearly all my patchwork projects, I use end-of-roll pieces at bargain prices.

    • profile image

      Tracy Monroy 

      8 years ago

      Great instructions here. Depending on how large your tablecloth is, you can probably just use fabric samples! Check out http://www.fabricmaven.com/ for fabric.

    • AdeleCosgroveBray profile imageAUTHOR

      Adele Cosgrove-Bray 

      8 years ago from Wirral, Cheshire, England.

      My list of creative projects is endless too. I'm glad you enjoyed this page.

    • RNMSN profile image

      Barbara Bethard 

      8 years ago from Tucson, Az

      this is a wonderful instruction on making the puffs!! makes me want to jump right up and do it....then I "membered" my quilt is still waiting on me and my latest gourd I am burning...its an hawaian leaf pattern :) so puffs will have to wait but I have added this one to my favorites!!! thank you and love you!!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)