January 10, 2014

A Christmas Decoration Story

Background Story  
Several years ago when I first bought my sewing machine (and I had never sewn anything in my life) I decided to make Christmas stockings.  (see original stockings here)
They were super cute stockings but not very functional due to the fact that I was VERY inexperienced sewing.  Although the pattern was probably plenty big the stockings kept "shrinking" because I wasn't getting all the layers in my seams and kept having to re sew and re sew seams.  Please keep in mind that I was self / blog / online tutorial taught to sew.  I had a little instruction at the store where I bought my machine but it was more of a "how to turn your machine on and make it go" than a class of how to make items.  I have a great friend Kathy that I email with questions and send pictures of all my sewing projects because she KNOWS how far I have really come in my sewing skills.      
The Christmas Tree Skirt and Stocking Story
Once upon a time on a day very close to Christmas 2013, the hubby and I visited the local craft / fabric store to look for fabric for stockings and a tree skirt because it was on sale (one of my favorite words).  Our fake tree had bit the dust this year and I wasn't motivated to start or finish this project because the tree that we had up was about a foot and a half tall and had a total of 10 ornaments on it. I was waiting for the after Christmas sale (there's that word again - I got my $359.00 tree for $97.00!) to get the tree that I really wanted.  So making a tree skirt for a tiny tree was NOT high on my priority list.  We got the fabric that we liked(on sale!!!) and when I got home it was just laid to the side.  
Too many other fun Christmas things to be doing...like opening gifts with these three cutie pies.
The story continues on cold night in Tennessee weeks later.  I was putting away stuff (you know - the stuff that you just lay down when you come in a room) and picked up my Christmas fabric to take it to my sewing area.  I picked up the retiring tree skirt because for some reason it didn't make it into the Christmas boxes that had been put away.  I knew that I was eventually going to make the tree skirt and I wanted to get the diameter from my old tree skirt before putting it away.  I went ahead and started measuring then just decided to make a tree skirt. 
I've never made a tree skirt. I don't have a pattern for a tree skirt.  I did know what I wanted so I jumped in feet first.   
     Things I wanted in a tree skirt:  double sided, a ruffle, & ribbon closures.
I used my old tree skirt for the size estimates.  Cut my circles. Made my ruffle. Made my quilt sandwich with a layer batting, ruffle, and ties included.  Then I started sewing.  I think the end product turned out quite nicely.     

The next day it was time for new stockings because if I don't finish them now they may never get done. 
I went back and used the same tutorial that I had on my original stockings.  I only made two changes.  1. I put the stocking pattern onto a piece of card board and made my pattern an inch wider ALL the way around.  This allowed for bigger stockings which we find more user friendly. 
2. Then I matched a cute little green ruffle from my tree skirt onto my stocking.
Here's the result. 

    And they all loved happily ever after.
The End

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