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Monday, December 21, 2009

The Stockings Were Hung by the Chimney with Care...

There is a special kind of charm about family Christmas stockings sewn by someone special and embroidered with each person's name, hanging by the fireplace every Christmas year after year after year. My friend Kathy's family has carried on this tradition now for several generations, as evidenced by the remaking of Bumpa's stocking to be used by the new Grandpa of the family. Now it is time for the next generation to get their own stockings, and other family members as well.

Continuing a family tradition with Christmas stockingsUsing one of the old stockings as my guide, I worked up pattern pieces and sewed five more stockings for this wonderful family. Here they are in the picture above, hanging on my fireplace where my own family's knitted mittens usually hang. If the names had worked out better, I might have thought about keeping them!

Hand embroidered Christmas stockingsEach name is hand embroidered using 3 strands of DMC embroidery floss and my very favorite embroidery stitch, the chain stitch.

Hand embroidered Christmas stockingsDonna's stocking got a little bit of a feminine touch with pretty light green organza ribbon, very sheer and has a little sparkle in it too.

Hand embroidered Christmas stockingsRiley's stocking needed a little change from the pretty packages which are on the other stockings. Can you guess by the fabric and the quilting that Riley is the canine member of this family?

Free motion quilting on dog's Christmas stockingUsing the very best free-motion quilting that I could muster with my walking foot, I free-handed the word "Woof" and a dog paw and a few dog bones on Riley's very cute red fabric with brown doggy paws all over it.

Hand embroidered Christmas stockingsAll the stockings have the same off white trim on the cuff and the toe, but the men got the ric-rac for a more manly touch.

Hand embroidered Christmas stockingsAnd here is baby Paul's stocking, the first of the next generation, but hopefully not the last! God willing, there will be siblings, maybe even a new uncle or two, and some cousins who will be needing stockings in the future.

exposed seams on Christmas stockingI decided to make Riley's stocking first, copying as best I could the construction of an old stocking that Kathy let be borrow to make the pattern. After putting it together, I decided that there had to be a better way to make the inside look more finished...

no exposed seams on Christmas stocking...so instead of layering the outside of the stocking with the batting and the lining before sewing the stocking together, I saved the lining to insert on its own, thus hiding all the seams and giving the inside of the stocking a much more finished appearance. I also used fusible fleece batting for these stockings, fusing it to the decorative outside stocking pieces, so I felt that quilting through all the layers really was not necessary. I was much more pleased with this outcome, and this is how I will construct any future Christmas stockings.

My Christmas preparations are well under way here, cleaning, baking, decorating, gift making, school projects, wrapping, all the fun of the season. I hope your stockings are hung by your chimney with care too, and that you have a very blessed Christmas season.

Happy Stitching!

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  • I love your Christmas stockings- I just wish I had a fireplace on which to hang some! One day when we get around to owning our dream home....
    Have a very Merry Christmas.

    By Blogger Trudi, At December 22, 2009 at 12:27 AM  

  • The stockings look great MG! Ya done good there girl!!! Something I am going to work on during 2010... I'll make all new stockings for us, and we have boyfriends and girlfriends which I make the mitts for... until they become part of the family, then I'll make them stockings too... 8-)

    Good luck with the rest of your Christmas prep! 8-)

    By Blogger Myra, At December 22, 2009 at 12:57 AM  

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