Christmas stockings

You can make unique Christmas stockings without a sewing machine. These hand-stitched stockings are very unique, and they can be personalized with names or special holiday messages. They are easy to make, and they make wonderful gifts.

To make a hand-stitched Christmas stocking you will need 1 half yards of either felt fleece or any other material you wish to use. You will also need a skein of embroidery floss, ½ inch wide satin ribbon, straight pins, a needle, scissors, and fabric chalk. Optional supplies are small jingle bells, fabric paint, cotton thread, beads, brushes, fabric glue, glitter, pretty buttons, pompoms, lace, and rickrack.

Use fabric chalk to draw the outline of a stocking on the backside of your chosen fabric. When drawing the shape, be sure to take into consideration the loss of size that will occur when the stocking is stitched around the edges. Also, you may want to consider making the stocking taller than desired so the top can be turned over to form a cuff. Also allow extra length if you intend on cutting out fringe on the cuff. This works best when using fleece material. Cut out the completed shape, turn the fabric over, and use it as a stencil for the other side of the stocking. Trace around the shape, and cut it out as well.

Choose a color of embroidery floss that coordinates well with the colors of your chosen fabric. Pin the two right sides of the stocking together using straight pins. Thread an embroidery needle with 2 strands of embroidery floss, and begin whip stitching the edges. Whip stitches are made by inserting the needle into the fabric and whipping the thread over the cut edges of the fabric and inserting the needle into the other side. Make the stitches approximately ÂĽ inch apart. Continue this process until the edges are completely stitched.

Turn the stocking right side out. If you have made the stocking long enough for a cuff, turn the fabric out to form the cuff. You can either hand-stitch lace or rickrack around the edge of the cuff, or if the cuff is long enough you can create a fringed edge. Do so by evenly cutting out ½ inch sections of fabric around the edges of the cuff. Make the fringe any length you desire. If you’ve opted to make fringe, you can tie on small metal jingle bells or pretty beads to the ends of the fringe.

If you didn’t form a fabric cuff for the stocking, make a faux cuff using pretty buttons. Sew buttons of your choice around the upper third of the stocking. Use buttons of all sizes and shapes in colors that coordinate with the fabric used for the stocking.

Pompoms or faux gemstones can also be used to embellish a hand-stitched Christmas stocking. Glue them on with fabric glue. You also might want to consider using glue and glitter to personalize the stocking with a name more or a special holiday message. Just draw the name or message with a bottle of craft glue, and sprinkle on the glitter of your choice. Use your imagination to design the perfect holiday stocking.

Make a hanger for your finished stocking using ½ inch wide satin ribbon in a coordinating color. Cut off a section of ribbon approximately 6 inches long. Fold it over and hand stitch it to the inside corner of the stocking.

Hang the finished stocking on the edge of a mantel or shelf. Special stocking hangers are available where most Christmas supplies and accessories are sold.

Hang the finished

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