My love for putting these little kits together began several years ago. My sister-in-law had a few kits that she wanted completed. Her mom had made similar stockings for her and her siblings and she wished for her children to have them too. She didn’t have the time to complete them so I took them on. As I went through the process of completing them I fell more and more in love with the “bling” of them. It has become a fun challenge to figure out how I can modify them and add to that bling.
This particular stocking is for my newest nephew, Liam. He just turned a year old and this past Christmas was his first! What better gift to make him than a lasting, used every year, Christmas stocking.
Bucilla is my favorite brand to work with because of the detail they put in their stockings. As far as instructions go…Bucilla’s are the clearest that I’ve experienced. You’ll need a little bit of knowledge of embroidery methods and stitches in order to get started. If you have that, these will be no problem for you to make at all. Bucilla does provide minimal instruction in the embroidery stitches used for each stocking, I however, did not find them to be the clearest.
NOTE: There are multiple videos on youtube.com that can help assist you with any how-to stitch instructions you may need.
Instructions: Bucilla uses a step by step process. Each step is numbered beginning with 1 and continuing on until the project is finished. There are usually anywhere between 70 and over 200 steps depending on the difficulty of the pattern. This one had just over 100.
In the kit are stamped pieces of different colors of felt, you cut the pieces out and decorate them using embroidery stitches, sequins and glass beads. If you are like me you might want to add lots of extras! NOTE: It’s important to cut as you go! Don’t loose track of which pieces are which numbers or you will have a mess on your hands! ALSO NOTE: They don’t send an excessive amount of sequins, glass beads or thread. You can find these supplies at your local Hobby Lobby or other craft store.
I generally stay pretty close to the original positioning of the pieces though in some cases I have changed things up to better represent the likes of the owner of the stocking. Some of those changes have been more laborious than others. You can remove step marks by using a needle to gently scrape the unwanted lines off of the felt.
This is pretty much where the similarities end. The main thing that makes my stockings different from “the pattern” is the actual stocking. The Bucilla “pattern” allows for a simple and thin piece of felt to be cut for the back of the stocking (usually white felt). The felt stretches with the weight of what is in the stocking creating holes. That’s not O.K. with me! I want my stockings to last for a long time!
I make a lined stocking with cotton fabric and attach the decorated front on it with a decorative blanket stitch. This will prevent the stocking from stretching. It’ll hold up for a long time Every child dreams of stuff and overflowing stocking hanging over the mantle, waiting for them on Christmas morning!
I quilt the back layer of the stocking (inserting a piece of batting between the layers) to give it padding and extra strength. Then I create a lining and attach a hanging tab.
I will lay the tab gently and carefully in between the two layers and sew it in strategically so that the stocking will hang facing straight out off the mantle. I like to make those tabs plenty long so there is room to let your stocking stuffers overflow out of the stocking.
The pattern for this stocking had the stocking name embroidered on the back of this large ornament hanging off the corner. I didn’t like that, so I used sequins to write out his name across the top of the stocking. You can use a pencil and write the name on the felt to help keep your lines straight, centered and even.
The last step is to blanket stitch the sequin covered stocking to the front of the cotton stocking.
Blanket Stitch all the way around!
Here is a picture of some of the other stockings I’ve completed in the past. (My sister-in-law completed the stockings and attached the 5 on the right of the mantle-I simply did the felt tops on those.) Even full, they will still hang facing out into the room because of how the tabs are applied.
There are so many memories wrapped up in these little stockings! I’ve customized several of these stockings to fit the lives of each of my family members. I love getting together every year with my family and looking them over! They are holding up GREAT over the years!
Credit: My thanks go to my sister-in-law who gave me the first love of this project! She helped so much in creating the design and look of these stockings back in the beginning! I don’t think I would have ever tackled a task like this without her encouragement and support! Love ya, Sister!
I do make these stockings for others. If you are interested, send me a message and we can chat about how to have some of your own!