I gave a preview yesterday of the Christmas stockings I made and promised you a tutorial. I’ll start by saying that for my stockings, I went all out and quilted them with 3 different prints and a solid colored liner, but you can always keep it simple and just use 1 print fabric for the whole thing, or a print and a liner, or even just a felt shell with some contrasting yarn stitched up the sides if you so choose. This can be as simple or as embellished as you’d like it to be in the end, the stocking world is your oyster. So here goes….
- fabric for the shell
- fabric for the liner (optional but a nice touch)
- 4″ fur for the top (optional)
- sewing machine (optional but would be a pain in the arse without it)
- needle and thread
- straight pins
- iron (if quilting)
- printed template (below)
- something to make a loop to hang stocking from, i.e. large grommet, yarn, leftover fabric, etc.
First, I made this template because I had no luck finding one online that I could print out. The template will fit perfectly on an 11×17″ piece of paper and if you don’t have access to a printer that’ll print on that size, you can try to print it out on a few sheets of letter-sized paper and tape them together.
If you do not plan on quilting yours, print and cut out the above template and skip to step 11…
I also made the following template which I used to trace my 3×3″ squares onto my fabric when I didn’t have a ruler handy (also on 11×17″ – let me know if you need me to shrink down to letter sized and I can upload those, too), otherwise a yard stick or ruler works just fine:
1) Print the stocking template and cut it out
2) Trace 3″x3″ squares on your fabric (I used a big honkin’ black permanent marker – none of those fancy schmancy magical disappearing ink fabric pens needed, all trace lines will be hidden) and cut them all out. I cut WAY too many for one little stocking. In the end, you’ll actually need 55 squares total.
3) I mentioned before that I used 3 different prints which you can see above. I like to put my quilting squares in piles before pinning into strips, it saves some time from trying to remember in between pins which print comes next if you’re using a specific pattern. Make your piles, 7 squares in each pile, 7 piles (please ignore the fact that there are 8 piles in my picture, I think I mentioned I cut way too many squares). Then make another 2 piles with 3 squares each:
4) Ultimately, you’re going to be pinning together 7 strips of 7, then another 2 strips of 3 squares…
5) Start pinning your piles into strips, pinning right side to right side:
Back side of pinned strip:
Front side of strip:
7 strips pinned (not pinned together, just lying next to each other for photo purposes and you can see my pattern):
6) Sew your strips. I used the edge of my foot as a seam guide rather than trying to measure out a seam:
Strips sewn all pretty-like:
7) Pin 2 strips together right side to right side by separating and pressing down the seams flat with your nail and pinning at each intersection (this guarantees your squares will line up nicely):
Do that at each intersection.
8) Pin the next strip on, right side to right side, then the next, and the next until you have all 7 strips pinned together in 1 big block of quilting goodness:
9) Pin the 2 strips of 3 to each side of the block at the bottom and sew away! Your block should look like this:
As you sew the rows, try to keep all the seams lying flat as you go.
So for an easy recap, aka Quilting for Dummies, aka Jaime Is Afraid She Has Over-Explained Making It More Difficult Than It Actually Is, first you sewed a bunch of strips, then sewed all the strips together into the above shape. Moving on….
10) Once you have your block all sewn, iron your seams flat:
11) Fold your whole piece in half with the wrong side facing out and lay the template on top of it:
11) Trace the template:
12) Pin along your outline, making sure you pin through both layers of your folded-in-half block:
13) Sew along your traced line everywhere but the top – make sure you keep the top of the stocking open otherwise Santa is gonna have a really hard time putting presents in it:
14) Cut off the excess fabric – I cut pretty close to my seam. And now you have a finished shell (still inside out):
Now for the lining:
15) Place your shell (still inside out) between 2 layers of your liner fabric:
It didn’t matter for mine because my liner was the same front and back, but if your liner has a pattern or a right side and wrong side, you’d want your right side to be out for this step.
16) Feel for the edge of the shell and pin through all 4 layers of fabric, trying to pin right through the seam of the shell. Pin all the way around except the top (the opening of the stocking):
17) Sew a straight stitch all the way around minus the opening (again, Santa needs an in):
18) Cut the excess fabric off the edges:
19) Turn inside out and admire your work so far:
20) From here you can simply finish the top edge with a quick seam, or you can add fur like I did. Measure fur and cut about an inch more than you need:
21) Pin fur to the inside edge of liner & shell and sew. I chose to hand-sew because it would have been really tricky trying to get it done nicely through the sewing machine. Sometimes the old-fashioned way is the best way.
Once you’ve sewn all the way around, fold the fur flap in place over the front of the stocking. Sew the loose edges of the fur to the stocking with a few stitches:
22) Finish it off with some way to hang it up (I didn’t take a picture of mine but I just threaded some yarn and added some color coordinated pom poms to the ends).
23) Pat yourself on the back, know that your stocking will make Santa spit out his cookies, and repeat after me: “HO-HO-HOLY POOP that is one nice looking sock.”