Holiday tutorials

Chris is a web designer and stay at home Dad of two preschool children. He is the publisher of Themeaparty.com, a site filled with birthday party and entertaining tips, including craft activities for children. Chris lives in the middle of the Prairies in Winnipeg, Canada, and no, he doesn’t play hockey. However, he loves his Tim Horton’s coffee and can whip up a fun party with some string, two paper clips, some stickers and a slice of pizza!

These snowflake patterns would be great to use on lots of different sorts of projects too…

Felt Christmas Stocking Tutorial

Hello, everybody. I’m just getting into fabric crafts, mainly because my eldest daughter, who is in kindergarten, brought home a cute felt candy cane she had made at her winter wonderland party, and asked if we could make something else. As we had just put up the Christmas tree, my wife and I thought of creating something special for the holidays that she can showcase. Christmas Stockings! After all, they delight kids of all ages with the surprises they hold inside.

This craft is certain to please, even before it’s filled with Christmas goodies. Though it’ll be too advanced for younger children (such as ours), we let her trace the stocking and the snowflake tracings. For her own stocking, we let her doodle on the fabric with glitter glue before sewing it together.

Materials:

  • Red felt (12″ X 16″)
  • Green felt, or other contrasting color (12″ X 3″)
  • Pins
  • Scissors
  • Carbon paper
  • Thread
  • Needle
  • Seed beads and bugle beads (white, silver, gold)
  • 12″ piece of ribbon

Two templates to download and print:

Instructions:

  1. Print out the template for the stocking and cut around the lines. You will have two pieces: the main part of the stocking and the top brim.
  2. Pin the pieces of paper onto a double layer of felt (use the red felt for the main part and the green felt for the brim).
  3. With sharp scissors, cut around the paper template. You will have two red stockings and two green brims.
  4. Print out the snowflake patterns and choose which ones you wish to embroider on your stocking. You can choose to make just one snowflake, or you can change the size of your snowflakes.
  5. Using carbon paper, trace the snowflakes onto the felt.
  6. Secure the thread on the reverse side of the felt. Bring the needle to the front, and thread the number of beads you need, to create each small line of your snowflake. Bring the needle to the back and then, bring it back to the front at the point where your next small line is. Continue this way until you have decorated your Christmas Stocking.
  7. Glue the green brim to the red stocking (both front and back).
  8. If you intend to fill your stocking, then it is best to sew the two pieces together either by hand or using a sewing machine. If you plan to use it just to decorate, you can just glue the front and back together around the edges.
  9. Make a loop with the ribbon and attach it to the top of the stocking where you wish to hang it from.

You’re done! Our daughter decorated a bunch of them her own 5-year old way, so we’re thinking of making several of these in minature as a cute garland for our fireplace.

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The holidays are almost here – school is out soon – and we go camping for a few days on our way to spend Christmas with my brother and his family.

We got into the Christmas spirit early this year because we were having so much fun putting together the Celebration issue of Action Pack - we created a silvery christmas tree and decorated it with handmade baubles. We also made a nature wreath, did some pavlova taste testing and have been baking ginger snaps as gifts (the recipes and tutorials for these projects appear in the Action Pack along with 20 other projects – it’s a whopper! find out more here).

Getting into all of these projects really kick started our summer of fun (yes it’s summer here) and my son is obsessed with making wire ornaments, while my daughter is hell bent on using up all my embroidery floss to make friendship bands for everyone.

  • This past weekend as well as baking up a storm by making more ginger snaps, I also made Pfeffernüsse for the first time – and they were delicious – I used Martha’s recipe (pictured above).
  • I moved around some furniture and did a bit of spring clean in the mud room and the children’s reading space – I have a big box of things to donate to charity – and I will be adding more coming up to Christmas – its a great time for a clean out – getting ready to start the next year fresh and organised.
  • I read slow love* (a book about finding yourself – I liked it – thoughtful and meditative – this memoir is about a woman who finds solace in her creativity – gardening and cooking and writing after a busy career ends).
  • I made a few lists – we did a flow chart – so we feel more organised and less chaotic – and can plan and prepare towards our goals.
  • I researched more bauble and decoration tutorials – because the kids are so into it that we need to make something new next weekend.
  • We harvested half of the garlic.
  • I spent some time on etsy.
  • Enjoying How to dress for success** – some of the fashion advice from when this book was first published in the 60s is surprisingly still valid today (other advice is so out of date that it provides a really good chuckle)
  • We went to a party - drank a bit of jungle punch and danced to some golden oldies.
  • The boy kicked it at futsal.
  • I refashioned some clothing for the kiddos, bought some new duds at the op-shop (thrift store) and cleared out my closet of the dust gathering garments.
  • Thats about it really – what did you get up to?
Now here are some of those ornaments tutorials I have been researching … get making!
More holiday crafting

*slow love by Dominique Browning (published by Plume 2011) was sent to me by the publisher – the link to Amazon is an affiliate link.

**How to dress for success by Edith head, (was originally published in 1967, this reprint is published by Abrams 2011) was provided by Allen and Unwin Australia. Links are Amazon affiliate links.

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