Friday, December 16, 2011

My First Sewing Project

After I finished painting the wall, I was still in the painting mode and so I cleaned up and painted this shelf.
I use a table for a desk, so this is for my desk storage.  I'm really happy with it.  I guess seeing all my craft things so nicely organized inspires creativity, because I took my new sewing machine down yesterday and took it on its maiden voyage.
I made Christmas stockings with the help of my friend Camilla, seamstress extraordinaire.  I had been thrifting sweaters with some vague notion that they would make great sweaters, when my friend Amy posted on her beautiful blog a sweater stocking pattern!  My printer is unreliable, so I sketched a pattern on some cardboard.
Here are some things I learned:
  • How to thread my sewing machine
  • My sewing machine (a craigslist win!) is actually a pretty good machine and can sew through some pretty thick sweaters
  • Use existing hems whenever possible
  • I can use my sewing machine!  
This sweater really buttons open!  Andrew already claimed it.

I'm sorry I didn't take any process pictures, but it was really easy (with an expert helping me).  Here's the breakdown:
  • Draw a pattern on cardboard
  • Cut it out
  • Flip the sweater inside-out 
  • Trace the pattern on the inverted sweater, with the top of the stocking lining up with the bottom hem, or the neck (a turtleneck would be really cute on a stocking)
  • Without cutting out the stocking, sew along your line.  When you come to the curly toe, read Amy's instructions (where it says "download stocking 2")
  • Cut out your beautiful stocking!
  • Flip it right-side-out
  • Adorn it with pretty ribbon, bells, or whatever you want!
I also had to sew part of the curly toe to the side of the stocking so it hung better.  If you follow Amy's pattern, you'd probably not have to do that.

It was a really fun project!  Today I'm going to trace the boy's hands on some of the sweater scraps and make them mittens!  Happy sewing, if I can do it, anyone can! 


  1. Yay, you made the stockings! They're so cute:) I think I might have posted about felted mittens too, though they're easy enough not to need a tutorial:) Some of the curly parts of my stockings dip over too, I actually stuffed the toes of some and added a pipe cleaner to make them keep their shape, but stitching it to the main part is clever; I didn't even think of that!

  2. These look GREAT! I love how crafty you are, Ariel. I used to have a sewing machine, but my Dad's dog ate part of it while I was on my mission. Maybe someday I'll win one from Craigslist... Thanks for this inspiration!!

  3. Ariel these are darling! Well done!

  4. I love these! I wanted to make them too, but never found time to go search out some sweaters. I did make Amy's stocking garland that she posted earlier in the season, which was fun. I planned to do a post on that, but couldn't get to it. Maybe next year!