Monday, September 10, 2012

Hang the Stockings

My cute son showing off his new Christmas Stocking
May I just start by saying how happy these stockings make me? Mr. Pie and I have been married for 8 years and, especially in the beginning because of deployments, rarely had a Christmas at home, or together. So I never really bothered doing a lot of decorating, even though I LOVE Christmas, and LOVE decorating for the Holiday.
 Let's just put it this way, I am the daughter of the guy that the neighborhood nicknamed "Clark Griswold". That should tell you something about how big Christmas was for me growing up.
I had a small hodgepodge of random, mismatched Christmas decor from my pre-married life that had mostly been given to me, and that had no real sentimental meaning to me. I would just kindof throw it up on the mantel and walls to make some kind of effort to decorate for Christmas, but it never really did much for me.
 Of course, then the twins were born, and my husband got a new assignment that kept him home a lot more.  I started thinking more about traditions, and making memories, especially around Christmastime, and I knew I wanted to do some things that would make our home a cozy, wonderful place during the Holidays where we could grow those memories and traditions.
And for me, part of that was making some special Stockings that the boys would see and use every year.  They are young enough that these will be the stockings they will always know and remember.  And I hope that will mean something to them one day.  
Stockings v1Stockings v2Stockings v3

(Click on any of the above photos to see a larger image)
This year, I will be able to put my Tree Skirt under the tree and hang those very Stockings up above the fireplace. And that makes my heart happy.

Now, on to the actual making of the Stockings!
The past two or three weeks have been hectic here in the Cocoa Pie household.  School starting, with meetings and school shopping, church responsibilities, and birthdays to bake cakes for have made my free time a lot more scares than usual.
Hence, I feel like I have been working on these Christmas Stockings FOR EVER.  It didn't help that I ended up re-embroidering new cuffs because my first "prototype" was embroidered on the wrong side of the cuff. 

Stockings emb closeup
Or that I ended up wasting some time looking for some different fabric for the lining before just deciding to use some that I already had...and ended up loving it, of course.

Stockings red lining
Red lining
Stockings white lining
White lining
 But they are finished.  Well, at least three of them are finished.  The most important ones.  The ones that Santa actually pays attention to and fills up with goodies on Christmas Eve.  My three boys stockings.
I have every intention on making two more for Mom and Dad.  In fact they are practically ready to finish.  the Stockings are sewn, the linings are sewn, the hangers are sewn.  I just have to make and embroider the cuffs.  But I decided I needed a break from Stockings and will wait to embroider them when I have other things to embroider.
These Stockings were inspired by This Tutorial, however, the only thing that is really the same is the strippy piecing.  After that point, I basically abandoned the tutorial and went off on my own.
The things I did differently:
- I actually quilted the pieced panels onto batting (In the tutorial, she just has you put decorative stitching on the fabric panel without stitching it to batting.)
-I adhered fusible fleece onto the back stocking piece and to one half of the cuff before folding it in half.
-I interfaced the stocking hanger with some featherweight interfacing and topstitched both sides.
-I (obviously) embroidered my sons names on the cuffs.
-I topstitched the inside top edge of the stocking to keep the lining down.
Things I would do differently next time:
-My biggest mistake?  I didn't wash the cuff fabric before embroidering their names on.  I didn't think about it until after when I was spraying it to remove my pen marks.  When the fabric got wet around the embroidery, the fabric rippled and it was hard to press it back into shape.  I can only imagine what will happen if I actually have to wash the stockings!
-I would try a fusible stabilizer to do the embroidery.  Even with the tear-away stabilizer doubled, I don;t think it was quite thick enough for the embroidery.  I don't know if that was because I was using metallic thread, or if it was because I had pre-cut the cuff fabric to size before hooping it, and it didn't quite fit entirely in the hoop. 

Linking to:

One Thing, One Week Challenge @ Amy's Creative Side

Tip Me Tuesday @ Tip Junkie (for some reason, the button wouldn't work!)

Fabric Tuesday @ Quilt Story
Love and Laundry


  1. Krysta, it is Rita visiting you from Tip Junkie! These are so cute and you did a beautiful job. I am sure your boys will cherish these for many years to come!

  2. Those are beautiful!! I've been wanting to make stocking for years and I always seem to run out of time. I'm visiting from Tip Junkie as well. I would love it if you would share this at our Weekend Wonders party at

  3. These stockings are so pretty! You posted just in time, because I have holidays on the brain lately. First my Kate Spain Joy fabric was delivered, then I saw someone else's tree skirt, and now these beautiful stockings. Ho ho ho!

  4. Oh! I love how they turned out! They're beautiful!

  5. Your stockings are just lovely! My mother made handmade stockings when my sister and I were born (and one for my dad) and seeing them each year is such fun. It's especially nice now, we're all living far apart so when we can get together over the holidays it's wonderful to see them together again. In the intervening years, we've also made stockings for others, nieces, significant others/husbands etc, so everyone feels included but their all a different style from those first 3 from all those years ago. Congrats on starting such a great tradition for your boys!

  6. I love these and I'm so glad you came to link them up. I'm featuring you tonight. ;)

  7. What gorgeous stockings. I promised my three "Littles" that I would make them new stockings this year. You have given me lots of inspiration! By the way I love your boys' names!!

    I am your newest follower.



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