I’ve been asked this question so often that it’s high time I should go into a detailed answer rather than just a quick one. But what we all really want to know is what on earth you’re supposed to do with them!
“Biscornu” is a funny word, isn’t it. It’s a french word, and it means “which has an irregular, strange shape” (source)
Aaaaah, now it makes more sense 😉 !
Yep, so a biscornu is a little cushion made of 2 stitched squares, like a standard cushion, except that they’re not assembled into a normal square pillow, they’re assembled into a wonky pillow.
To see how that’s done, do read the Biscornu tutorial.
I don’t know who thought this up in the first place (ie. how to make a biscornu out of 2 squares of fabric) but it’s a brilliantly fun idea. To the best of my knowledge, these cute little cushions first appeared in France in 2004, and they went viral in 2008. (source)
What do you mean “but what’s the point of them“?
They’re small & they’re cute, isn’t that enough!? No… I didn’t think so, either. There’s only so many ornaments one can put up with. Agreed.
So let’s see what we can make with these little biscornus:
1. a plain ornament
Obviously. Still counts, doesn’t it – they can be soooo pretty 🙂
Featured biscornu: Let it Snow Biscornu
2. a pomander
You simply need to fill it with dried lavender.
Featured biscornu: Lavender Biscornu
3. a pin cushion
Depending on their size, you can use a biscornu as a free-standing pin cushion, or as a scissor fob (to make a tiny pin cushion). Or you can use it teamed up with a thread catcher!
4. a wedding ring pillow
I love that idea! The shallow centre is the perfect shape to tie two wedding rings with a pretty ribbon.
5. a paperweight
You simply need to fill them with something heavy enough – Granulex Soft stuffing granules are perfect for the job.
Featured biscornu: Cornflower Biscornu
6. a towel holder
Especially cool if you can match the biscornu to the towel 🙂
Featured biscornu: High Seas Biscornu
7. a necklace
And whyever not? It only works with tiny biscornus, fair enough, but nobody said tiny wasn’t allowed!!
Featured biscornu: Rose Chocolat Stitched Jewellery
8. a Christmas tree bauble
It’s almost round in shape, so it’s pretty cool to decorate a Christmas tree.
Featured biscornu: Snowmen Biscornu
9. a framed picture
Yes, some of them do look really pretty in a frame!! (I do realise it kind of defeats the object of a biscornu, but still, it’s worth mentioning that you can frame them!)
Featured biscornu: Magnolia Biscornu
10. a hand warmer
This is a really cool idea brought to us by Kate from Kate’s Threads: fill the biscornu with rice, dried corn (not popcorn!!), flaxseed or any other filling you can heat up in the microware, and it’ll make a fabulous handwarmer! Thanks Kate for this great idea!
Do you have more ideas? Do post them in the comments below 🙂
A few design ideas you may like, for which this method works really well: