Quilted Christmas Stocking

I like to make things for my parents, I think they enjoy being able to say that I made whatever it is. Or I hope that’s the case and they’re not just being nice!

I find making for men harder, they don’t seem to need pouches or bags, although I’ll admit there’s only so many small sewn storage solutions that anyone really needs… So this year I made my Dad a stocking – and then got carried away putting little things in it but that’s a separate problem!

I did a quick search and found an idea for a stocking with a quilted star here. I just took the idea from the pictures. I learnt how to make stars whilst working on my quilt, and they’re a quick pattern to add festive detail. I made my stocking 15m/ 8″ across the top then drew a stocking shape to add to the star block on each side. 

I used 3 festive fat quarters – a red and a white snowflake pattern and a red Christmas text pattern.

I have nowhere good to hang a stocking so here it is on a door handle 🙂

I used the great selvage to make the hanging loop. There’s often wonderful little details next to the manufacturer and fabric details.

I’m really pleased with how it turned out. Now there’s only one day left before I hand it over!

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Nearly Christmas advent calendar update

I’ve been busy opening my many Swap-bot advent calendars this month 🙂 It still feels surreal that Christmas is so close, so it’s been a regular surprise that there’s little gifts everyday, which is nice but also serves as a reminder of my terrible memory and inability to adjust to new activities… I took a few quick pictures before heading to my parents place for Christmas. I brought the final few days with me, and now there’s only one day left to open!

UK stationery advent calendar:

Stickers, pencils, sticky notes, a note book and little stamping set. There’s also more stickers and a stripy washi tape which somehow escaped my picture taking. I might take some fun pencils to work 🙂 

European flat items advent calendar:

Stickers, cards, lots of envelopes, a magnet from Prague, gift bag, ribbons and a couple of tags and charms. There’s been a big mix of stuff in this calendar…

International advent calendar:

I’ve been enjoying this calendar. I had one particularly generous partner who sent fabric, socks, a baggage tag, Japanese bowls and a soap and wash puff set 🙂 I’ve also received fun paperclips, tags, a key light and some scrapbooking style stickers.

It’s really nice to have little surprises every day to cheer me up when I’m tired. I suppose a calendar for every month would be a bit too much! It would be fun to keep going to New Year or when the weather improves 🙂

Chatsworth at Christmas

I’d heard about the beautiful Christmas decorations at Chatsworth House, but until recently I’d only visited in the summer. This years theme is ‘The Nutcracker’ – cue ballerinas and nutcracker soldiers, along with all the trees, light and baubles necessary for an amazing Christmas event! Chatsworth is a beautiful place normally, but the Christmas decorations made the visit extra special. Only part of the house is open in the winter (some rooms are already closed for cleaning and renovation) but there’s still plenty of festive rooms to admire. I might have found a new festive tradition 🙂

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Advent calendars update

Almost halfway through advent! Last year I don’t think I ever posted the advent calendar I received – I took the last few gifts home for Christmas meaning to take photos of the whole 24 items later on and it just never happened… As today I have time, motivation and some brain power (a rare combination at the moment!) I’ll do an about halfway update on my 3 advent calendars 🙂

The stationery advent calendar:

Lots of nice goodies here! Stickers, sticky notes, lots of great tapes, pens and a candy cane pencil! I’ve already started using some of the tapes and stickers 🙂 A pegasus is the closest thing I had to a unicorn!

The European flat items calendar:

More lovely tapes, including a Moomin tape, a couple of bookmarks, a little notebook, nautical themed ribbon, candle, note cards, and a fountain pen. I’m finding this one a bit mixed…I love the gold leaf bookmark and the patterned tapes, but the dark tape and the pen appear already used – I think I’d mind it less if it wasn’t so obvious!

The international calendar:

Even more mixed in this one so far, but I have hopes for improvement – I’ve tried to open the more obvious or boring looking ones first 🙂 I understand people don’t want to spend much at all on swaps (or so it feels like) but getting clearly used items or part of a stack of sticky notes etc. does bother me, especially when I’ve thought of these as gifts rather than just a few little bits to throw in an envelope. So, in this selection we have: Tapes (possibly not full rolls? turning them into samples might be better if that’s what you’re sending…), sticky notes, scrapbooking stickers, Halloween stickers (?!), candles, confetti, twine and charms, a decoration, and the big surprise – sparklers! I just checked the Royal Mail ‘do not ever post this’ list and as I thought all fireworks are on there. Maybe the restrictions in the Netherlands are looser? I can actually trace all the weird stuff in this calendar to one swapper…

Also in this calendar, selfie cards. I’d never heard of them before, not being a big selfie taker or social media user, but I believe this is what they’re for:

Slightly dissapointed they’re double sided and not postcards. Maybe I could take them if I ever get invited to a party…

Roll on Christmas! Holiday time to sleep in and hopefully get some energy back 🙂