Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Stocking fun

I was inspired when I watched this video from the Missouri Star Quilting Company. 

I had bought this mini charm pack from the Missouri Star Quilting Company back in February/March of last year in thoughts that I would make a stocking for my new baby that was born December 15th, 2014. Welcome baby Blake!

Well, because it was Thanksgiving and I had time off after I finished his quilt I decided to go for it. Sadly, I searched all over my house for the mini charm pack. I couldn't find it anywhere. 

So, I went to Jo Anne's hoping to find a Christmas themed precut--I was very disappointed. They has tons of beautiful fabric, but the clock was ticking and I didn't have time to go through and pick out coordinating fabrics. So, on my way home I stopped in at Hobby Lobby and found a cute far quarter bundle. I had some red felt in my stash from a remnant I gobbled up at Jo Anne's years ago when I lived in Cleveland, OH. 

The hardest part of this whole project was cutting 2.5" squares. I took a bunch of pictures of the construction and the promptly deleted them--because you know that what you do with the perfect photos (trying to remain calm while remembering the tragedy). So to make the squares I cut 2.5" strips the length of my fabric. I folded the fat quarter in half and half again so I didn't have to cut too long. Then, I lined up two or three strips (folded in half) and cut 2.5" squares after trimming the selvage. I repeated until I had enough squares for the stocking (42 as Jenny did it, 46 the way I did it). 

I did everything just like Jenny did in the video except I added another row because I wanted my stocking to be a little bitter. So I had 9 rows or four across for the body of the stocking and 3 rows of 2 for the toe. Also, I made my stocking a backwards "L" shape, I think she made it the other way. And I added a hook. To make the hook I cut a piece of felt 2.5 inches by 8 inches and folded it in half and pressed and then opened it up and folded the sides in to the middle and pressed. Then I folded that back in half again with the short edges inside the fold and sewed down both sides in a contrasting thread  with a slightly longer stitch length. Then when I was attaching the cuff at the top I inserted the hook. I recommend pinning the hook in between your cuff and stocking and mock folding it all back the way it's going to go to make sure you have the hook in the right place before you sew. I didn't make that mistake this time, but I have learned that lesson the hard way several times. Now I always pin it and make sure it's in the right spot.

After I hung this stocking up with my other stockings I never realized there isn't a "standard" way for stockings. I have a bunch that were made for me and some that I purchased they don't all go to one direction. I could have sworn stocking were always backward's "L's."

The funnest part was doing the straight line stitching. I recommend pulling out your walking foot even though the project is small. Also, I would recommend going back and forth on the fabric as Jenny does in her video to keep your squares as square as can be. I didn't use my walking foot on the second one I did, and the squares got a little warped. 

Really, you should watch Jenny's video tutorial it's fantastic. I was able to whip this bad boy out in a few hours. Had I not spent so much time repressing my seams I am sure I could have gotten it done even faster.

Because I truly believe you have replace the thing you lost to find the thing you lost. The day after I finished this stocking I found the charm pack I had lost. I have completed part of it and will post more pictures as I complete that when I have time again. The early weeks with a newborn is constant nursing. Not really easy to sit a sewing machine when you have a baby eating from you. 

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