Thursday, 18 December 2014

Christmas Stocking for your favourite dog

Picturing the fire place with the hanging personalized stockings over always gives me a warm Christmas feeling. We do not have a fire place, nor a dog, but what better way to say thank you to a someone special, but to make a small stocking for his pet. Everyone with a pet adores his friend. To make present for the pet is a wonderful way to touch someone's heart. 

This stocking was my little daughter's idea. She is in love with dogs and desperately begs me to have a puppy. She decided to sew a small stoking for her teacher's dog. So this is her project and most of the work was done by her. 

you will need:

paper template for the stocking
paper template for the paw
a sheet of red felt fabric for the stocking
a piece of black felt fabric for the paw
cotton fabric for the lining
personalized label
decorative ribbon for the bow

1. Draw the stocking on a sheet of paper - the size you would prefer. Cut it out.
2. Draw a paw on a sheet of paper. Cut all the elements - toes are tricky small but for the small children's fingers are perfect :)
3. Stitch the name of the dog on a small piece of Aida fabric (14 ct).
4. Tie the ribbon, forming the front bow. 
5. Fold the red felt sheet in two. With a washable pencil, trace the stocking template onto the felt. Trace the paw template on the black felt. Cut out the elements of the paw.
6. With a washable pencil, trace the stocking template onto the wrong side of a cotton fabric. Do not cut the stockings.
7. Sew the paw onto the drawn stocking, using backstitch (again, the toes, especially for this size stocking, are tricky, but... it is worth every effort, when the kid's eyes sparkle in happiness...)

8. Attach the name.
9. Fold the red felt, right side down.
10. Fold the cotton lining right side down. 
11. Position the two parts opposite to each other, following the picture's diagram.

12. Optional: You could use a different decorative fabric for the top of the stocking. If that is the case, draw the stocking on the lining few centimetres longer (as much as you want it to be visible on the finished product). 
13. Sew all three fabrics together on the wrong side. Starting from the felt, sew around the drawn line all along, finishing at the end of the cotton lining drawn stocking. Make sure you leave about 6-8 cm unsewn space at the lining.
14. Turn the stocking right side up through the unsewn seam. Press with an iron to straighten the edges. 
15. Attach the bow.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Cross-stitched Tag for Christmas

Making a tag for a Christmas present is very exciting and sometimes even more appreciated, than the present itself. This season, the things we make with our hands are precious. While making presents, we put our heart into it, and that is what Christmas is about.

Make a tag for a nice biscuit box, or a bar of chocolate (who does not love chocolate ?! ... ). The tag will be an emblem, representing love, friendship and respect. 

you will need:

tag template
Christmas pattern for cross stitching
28 ct linen fabric
embroidery floss
fabric of choice for the back of the tag

I used a pattern from the loved by me French magazine "Création Point de Croix:

1. Draw your template on a sheet of paper.
2. Cut a piece of fabric as big as the stitched pattern.
3. Cut the batting with the size of the tag template.
4. Secure the batting to the fabric with pins and stitch with a contrasting thread, so you will be able to quilt stitch easily.

5. My back fabric choice is with patterns and it is easy to make uniformed quilt stitches. If you chose plain fabric, you would need to draw some lines diagonally and follow them while stitching.

Make small stitches - it looks neat and gentle and the stitches do not scream for attention:

The black thread, used for securing the batting to the fabric is visible here. Now it would be the time to remove it.

6. Pin both pieces together, facing each other. 
7. Sew along the edges of the batting, leaving a unsewn part of one of the side seams for turning the tag inside out. 
8. Cut along the seam, leaving 5 mm seam allowance. Clip the two down corners at 45°.
9. Turn the tag inside out, pressing the seams with an iron.

10. Make the eyelet. I used a tool for cutting the fabric, but instead of putting the metal ring for the eyelet, I decided to sew it:

This is how my sewn eyelet looks like - I like it better than the metal one, because it is more naturally looking and matches nicely the cross stitching.