What's that you say? It's not Christmastime yet? Well, at my house we prepare for the holidays virtually year-round because then, when November and December come, we can relax and enjoy the holiday season rather than become self-loathing hermits who refuse to go out in public because of the craziness. My shopping is finished (just waiting to be wrapped), I'll be making candies soon, but the stockings I was able to do over the summer! I digress.
I wanted uber-cute-personalized-trendy-not-too-christmasy Christmas stockings. Pipe dream? NO. First, I had to find the right "shape." See, we're big stocking-stuffing people and I needed it to be large enough to accommodate my visions of stuffing grandeur! So I did what any great, creative mind would do...I went rummaging through my mom's holiday decor boxes to find my childhood stocking (which is large and sturdy enough to hold an orange in the toe, followed by an apple, banana, bottle of shampoo, and other trinkets-galore). I set the stocking on my cutest-ever chocolate and white damask fabric and cut out my stocking shape. Remember to cut two!
Next step was to cut the lining for my stockings. Again, remember to cut two! I wanted my family's stockings to be all matchy-matchy, but still personalized. Enter: lining fabric! I love red and brown together, and those just happen to be the colors my living room is already decorated with, so I chose different red fabrics which showcased both my personality and my husband's. He got baseballs, I got hibiscus flowers. One day, when we have babies, they will have different red linings. But don't you worry that I've already cut out four more brown damask shapes in anxious anticipation!
Furthermore, I wanted my stockings to be heavy-duty enough to take the wear-and-tear of the ceremonial stuffing-hanging-all-around-holiday-merriment, so between my damask and red lining, I also cut a piece of quilt batting. I stacked my pieces accordingly to get ready for the sewing.
Because I was planning on binding the stockings with personalized bias tape, there was no reason to sew the pieces right-sides-together. Easy, eh? Therefore, I just serged the exterior fabric/batting/lining pieces together. It was pretty slick and much quicker than having to turn them afterward.
Next came the bias tape adventure. I had never made my own before, but it turned out to be MUCH easier than I expected! I used the same lining fabric and created this tutorial (posted earlier) if you're interested. If not, any ol' bias tape will do!
After attaching the front and back of the stockings together using the bias tape, it was time to work on the minky cuff! That's right, minky. See? You know you love these stockings. I used the heaviest interfacing I could find to put inside the minky. Seriously, this stuff was like cardboard. It wreaked havoc on numerous machine needles, but it definitely keeps the shape nicely! I just measured the stocking opening, doubled its length (for the front and back), and then left a 1/2" seam allowance. I cut the interfacing and then wrapped it in the minky.
I serged the two ends together, and then inserted a hangy loop (extremely technical term). Hint: If you insert the loop the way I did, it make the stocking hang at a lovely angle.
Then, slide the cuff over the stocking opening and match pined edge to the opening. Sew around the edge to attach the cuff to the stocking and...voila!...
...You have a broken needle...A LOT of broken needles actually! I had to include this photo purely because I've broken plenty of needles in my day and have never seen one bend in such a fashion before snapping. Amazing.
Anyway, what you REALLY have (besides broken needles) are uber-cute-personalized-trendy-not-too-christmasy Christmas stockings. I added some layers of grosgrain ribbon and little floral button embellishments.
But wait! There's more! I also found these silver monogram pins which made them even MORE personal! I pretty much love how they turned out. Now go make your own. You know you want to. Get it done before the holiday season so you can enjoy that time of year rather than stress it!
Note the cute, personalized bias tape?