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Stunning Santa stocking.

YOU will need: Large piece of woollen blanket Contrasting vintage fabric (or felted woollen fabric for appliques) Embroidery threads Embroidery needle Sewing machine (optional) Tailor''s chalk Pins Length of ribbon Little bits of sparkle, buttons or pom-poms (if desired) Step one: Start by making a template. Draw one freehand on newspaper or draw around the largest pair of Wellington boots that you have in the house and then add quite a few centimetres all around. Cut out the shape.

Step two: Blankets are perfect for this project as they have a helpful finished edge already. If the blanket is different on the front and the back, place it right-side down. Pin the top of the stocking template along the fringed or finished edge of blanket and chalk around it to make the sewing line.

Remove the template and cut out the stocking shape about 2cm outside that line. Turn the template over, chalk a mirror image of the shape on the blanket and cut it out the same way.

Step three: If you want to add applique decorations to the stockings, now is the time to sew them on. Simplicity is best, so choose strong Christmas shapes such as baubles or gifts, or the recipient''s name or initials, and cut them from vintage fabrics or felted wool. Or cut pocket shapes from more of the blanket and sew them on to the stocking to hold special little presents.

Step four: Pin the appliques in place, ensuring they don''t stray over the sewing line or they will disappear into the seam. Either hand-sew all around the edges with blanket stitch, or machine-sew them on using the zigzag setting.

Step five: When you''ve finished the applique, place the stocking shapes right-side together, making sure the fringed or ribbon-edged tops are level with each other. Pin the stockings together and then sew all around the chalk sewing line using backstitch.

Step six: Turn the stocking right side out and trim off any excess seam allowance. You need to add a loop of ribbon to the top so it can be hung up. Press open the back seam at the top of the stocking with a warm iron. Pin the ends of the ribbon loop across the seam allowances and sew them in place using backstitch on the machine or some good, strong handstitches.

Step seven: You can sew a pom-pom to the tip of the stocking toe, and sequins, buttons and trims to the top edge if you have used fabric without a finished border, or just want to add a bit more sparkle.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Dec 10, 2011
Words:431
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