Thursday, July 15, 2010

Patchwork Christmas Stockings

Did you think I forgot about those Christmas stockings?  It's true I've spent more time hand quilting the Fairytale Patchwork quilt than doing any other sewing, but I have made progress on the stockings, here and there.  When last you saw, my first stocking looked like this:
Christmas Stocking in Progress

The next step was to embroider "Rachel" up top.  Making use of a light table, I traced a print out of my name in "Dauphin", one of my favorite fonts.  To embroider this font, which has irregular thickness, I switched between a back stitch and chain stitch as I followed each letter.
on July 4th

Such a portable project!  I worked on it on July 4th while waiting for dark.  But, um, I had to take out all those stitches because I'd done them in full strand embroidery floss.  Oops, gotta remember to separate those strands!  Anyways, here's the finished embroidery.
Stitching Up close

And, voila, my first finished patchwork Christmas Stocking!
First Finished Stocking

Now that I had done one, the next came more easily.    Here's Aria's done in lots of Tufted Tweets and a little Heather Ross, Far Far Away.
Finished #2!

Aria's been grumpy about my choice of fabrics for her stocking.  She doesn't understand why I'd use fabric with pictures of chairs and birds.  You should hear her go on about the birds so disparagingly.  Why not princesses and unicorns, mom?  Sheesh.  But, I won her heart with the embroidery.  Her eyes lit up just imagining presents with sparkly silver bows!
Sparkly Presents for girlie

When I was finished, she smiled and admired her stocking, but did point out that the purple wildflower fabric (a scrap from her Far Far Away quilt) is her favorite.

All in all these patchwork Christmas Stockings are a super-fun and relatively quick project.  After the embroidery work is done, I can put together the stocking in one evening.  I've used a piece of muslin as a base for the patchwork, which I sew on in horizontal strips after doing any piecing required.  Each stocking is backed in a solid color and finished with a little linen loop for hanging.
2 Down, 2 to go

But, darn those loops - they're the hardest part!  It took me 5 tries to get the first one sewn on and 4 tries on the second one.  It's amazing how many ways there are to mess up the orientation of that loop!  Several times I'd leave a little bit of the edge exposed on the right side of the seam.  I even sewed the loop inside the stocking the first time I tried!  On Aria's stocking, I sewed the loop on the wrong side of the stocking.  These are the moments when I wonder how I ever did so well in school.  But, now I have conquered two loops.  Hahahaha (evil chuckle). Wish me luck on the next two.


  1. Those are gorgeous! I can hardly wait to see the remaining two!

  2. Beautiful!! Can't wait to see the next two! Your embroidery is so pretty, great job!
    I have some embroidery packed for our trip, sadly leaving my sewing machine at home though... I'll miss it....

  3. I love these! Makes me want to start on stockings tonight! Too bad my embroidery is atrocious... Can't wait to see the next one!

  4. gorgeous. amazingly gorgeous.

  5. They are beautiful. Glad Aria came around for you and loves hers now. The embroidery is beautiful.

  6. I so love reading your descriptions of your girls opinions of these absolutely gorgeous things. I was just like them when I was a little one. Drove my mom nuts. Yes, steadfast opinions, likes and dislikes.
    P.S. Your embroidery is perfect. So perfect.

  7. Those are so cute, I love the purple one especially!

  8. [...] This time I traced the stitch line with a fine permanent black marker.  Rather than stitching with buttonhole thread, as suggested in the book, I’m using doubled regular black thread since I didn’t have time to run to the store before our trip.  Worked fine!  The outer nude jersey is an old T-shirt and the peak-through fabric is a purple woven from Aria’s Christmas Stocking. [...]


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