Planning to hang stockings by the fireplace at Christmastime? This year, start a new tradition for you and your kids by creating your own Christmas stockings. Best of all, if you make them yourself, you don’t have to stick with the standard red stocking format. You can personalize them to reflect each family member’s interests, from ice skates to flip-flops. To begin, start with a simple undecorated stocking from the store, or make your own by following these basic directions:
Traditional Christmas Stockings
Ages 6 to 12 Skill level: Medium Materials needed: Paper, red fuzzy fabric or whatever color or fabric you choose for your stocking, white fuzzy fabric for a cuff, pins, scissors, thread, sewing machine.
Fold the stocking fabric in half with the right side facing in. Draw a stocking pattern onto a sheet of lightweight paper, then pin the pattern onto the folded stocking fabric. Carefully cut out the shape of the stocking (you should have two pieces). Cut two pieces of cuff fabric that are approximately 12 inches tall and one inch wider than the top of your stocking. Fold over the cuff pieces – with the right side facing out – so that the cuff pieces are about 6 inches tall. Pin the cuff pieces to the top of the right side of your stocking pieces so that the cut edges line up straight. Sew a straight line across the top to attach the cuff to the stocking. Then fold up the cuffs and line up the two stocking pieces with the right side of the stocking fabric facing in. Sew a 1/2-inch seam all around. Turn the stocking right-side out and you have a Christmas stocking ready to decorate and fill.
Decorations for Traditional Christmas Stockings
Christmas Shapes: Cut out Christmas shapes like bells or holly leaves from festive material or felt and appliqué the pieces to the stocking.
Glitter names: Write each person’s name in glue on the cuff of the stocking, then sprinkle glitter over the glue. Allow the glue to dry and then shake off the excess glitter.
Cuff trim: Stitch a row of pom-poms, lace, ric-rack, bells, or other decorative edging to the bottom of the cuff. Embroidered names: Embroider names or initials on to the cuff.
Personalized Christmas Stockings
Ice Skate: Make a white stocking with a red cuff. Cut a blade shape out of grey felt and sew it to the bottom of the stocking. Stitch a shoelace in a criss-cross pattern up the front; add bells to the end of the lace.
Flip-Flop or Sandal: Make a stocking in a flesh color without a cuff. Attach felt cut-outs (either by sewing or gluing) to the front of the stocking in the shape of the sole of a sandal and add flip-flop or sandal straps. Add a beaded anklet for decoration.
Ballet Slipper: Make a white stocking without a cuff. Attach a slipper shape made out of pink felt to the bottom of the foot. Stitch a pink ribbon in a criss-cross pattern up the length of the stocking and tie it in a bow on top.
Old-Fashioned Boot: Make a green boot-shaped stocking with a black cuff. Attach a heel shape made out of black felt to the bottom of the foot. Stitch a row of black buttons up the front. Add a sprig of holly at the top.
Cowboy Boot: Make a boot-shaped stocking with tan or brown felt. Attach a heel and toe with black felt. Stitch a ring of black felt around the ankle and loop a large silver buckle through it.
Fireman Boot: Make a boot-shaped stocking with black or dark green felt. Stitch a heel, toe, and cuff to the boot in a bright yellow felt.
Sneaker: Make a shoe-shaped stocking in white. Attach a blue sneaker shape to the foot – adding brightly colored stripes if desired – and add shoelaces to the top of the foot. Add brightly colored stripes along the leg for tube socks.