Sometimes your Christmas knitting list becomes a bit too long. This happened to me last Christmas when I broke my collar bone right before Thanksgiving. I had hopes of knitting my sons each a Christmas stocking but it just wasn't going to happen. I whipped these up on Christmas Eve. My husband and I like them so much I probably won't be knitting stockings anytime soon. Here is an easy tutorial to make your own from a wool sweater. They would be great if you need Christmas Stockings for your family or they are so simple you could use them to wrap Christmas gifts for friends in or...the possibilities are endless when you can make one in hour or less and several from one sweater.
In my haste to make the stockings last year I didn't take pictures as I went so I am recreating them here for you. You can felt the sweater and skip some of the sewing that holds the knit stitches together. I wanted to see what the fabric would look like felted so I sewed a two seams across the shoulder (to keep both the sweater and the sleeve from unraveling) and cut in between the seams then felted the sleeve in the washing machine. I didn't like the felted fabric as well as the knitted fabric. So here are my steps for a non-felted Christmas stocking.
Sweater (wool if you are going to felt it)
Needle and thread
Step 1: Place another stocking on the sweater, lining up the long heel side with the side of the sweater. Trace a stocking shape on the sweater about an inch outside the stocking template, except along the sweater side seam. I used a sharpie to trace so that it was visible.
Step 2: Sew a seam half an inch inside your traced line and half an inch outside your traced line. This is to keep both the stocking and the rest of the sweater from unraveling.
Step 3: Cut out the stocking on the traced line.
At this point your sweater should look like these photos with your seam holding it all together waiting for your next upcycled project. You can see on my sweater how I fit two stockings on the bottom part of the sweater.
Step 4: Turn the stocking inside out. Sew a half inch seam, enclosing the previous seam inside this second one. This leaves no raw edges inside your stocking. Your stocking should look like this one on the inside. Remember this does not apply to the long heel side of the stocking as that seam is typically finished with a serger when the sweater was made so you don't have to do anything on that side.
Step 5: Cut a strip of felt about 4 inches by 1/2 inch. Fold in half and sew on to the inside seam (the side seam you didn't sew) of the sweater. I hand sewed this on but I suppose you could use your sewing machine.
Step 6: If desired, cut out a letter (or other design) out of the felt and sew onto the front of the stocking. I hand sewed the letters too because it was simpler and quicker for me. One interesting thing I realized was that on all of my handmade stockings the toes point to the right. But on the store bought stockings we have, the toes point to the left. Not sure if mine going to the right has something to do with me being left handed or not. There probably is not a right or wrong way but pay attention to which one you want when sewing on the letter.
That is it. Two new Christmas stockings made with what I had in the house. Love that. Hopefully all the instructions make sense. Feel free to ask for clarification if they do not. I co-oped in my daughter's school this week for literacy and writer's workshop. I was helping the students write "How to" speeches. Maeve was writing hers about how to make a fabric/paper doll. I was reminded as I helped the students how challenging it is to write clear instructions for others to follow. So if I failed with this post, let me know. :)
Only 20 more days for Christmas knitting...I am headed back to my knitting needles in the rocking chair by the fire. That sentence makes me sound really old. I am not. I will be breaking up sibling arguments and having a few lightsaber fights as I try to knit I am sure.
Joining with Tami, Andrea, and Natalie.
Labels: sewing, sweater, sweaters, Tutorial