Posts Tagged ‘vintage’

Play Date #11 The Stockings Were Hung

October 6, 2014

by the chimney with care in hopes that St. Nicolas soon would be there.

Family Stockings

Family Stockings

“Use it up. Wear it out. Make it do. Or do without.” is a quote I grew-up with in the 50’s. Being the fourth born of five children, I knew what hand-me-downs, cleaning your plate, share with your brother, etc. meant. Therefore, it’s easy to realize the origin of my game of using every little scrap of fabric, taking what someone else has discarded, and making it into something desirable. For Play Date #11, come along with me to make a one-of-a-kind Christmas stocking.

To create a stocking foundation on which to embellish, you can do one of three things:

  • Cut a stocking from an old damaged quilt. You may need to piece sections together to get a piece large enough for your stocking size.
  • Use a quilt top and add batting to the wrong side of the top before embellishing it.
  • Piece fabric scraps onto batting that has been cut into a stocking shape.

The stocking I’m showing you here was made from pieces of a vintage quilt. The ten stockings pictured below were made from the same quilt.

Multiple Stockings from Same Quilt

Stockings from One Quilt

Santa won’t be able to resist filling these vintage-looking stockings. They are fun to make in different sizes and shapes and easier than they look. A unique construction method makes them a cinch to line, sew and turn.

Finished Stocking Measures 7" Across top and 17" tall.

Finished Stocking Measures 7″ across top and 17″ tall.


  • Backing and lining for stocking, 1/2 yard for a stocking approximately 8″ X 18″, much less for small or tiny stockings
  • Assorted small pieces of trim, lace and ribbon
  • Jingle bells and other Christmas trinkets
  • Photo transfer and quote transferred to fabric
  • Vintage quilt or quilt pieces
  • Stocking pattern of choice

Instructions for Stocking front

  1. Piece together vintage quilt scraps or use a piece from a damaged quilt. My sister gave me these scraps she had left-over from one of her projects.
    Scraps from a Vintage Quilt

    Scraps from a Vintage Quilt

    I pieced them together and ironed the piece flat.

    Scraps Pieced and Ironed

    Scraps Pieced and Ironed

  2. Cut stocking pattern from quilt piece.
    Cut Stocking

    Cut Stocking

    There are stocking  patterns to be found on the internet. Or, you may have one in your pattern collection. You could use my pattern pictured here. It is possible to use a copy machine to enlarge or reduce the size of your pattern to get an assortment of sizes.

    Stocking Patterns

    Stocking Patterns in Various Sizes

  3. Embellish seam lines with lace, ribbons, and trims. Sew trims in place by machine whenever possible. Some will require stitching along both edges and others through the center only. If there is a row of visible stitching in the trim design, try to stitch on top of it with matching thread for the most invisible application.

    Embellish Stocking

    Embellish Stocking

  4. Embellish the stocking to your heart’s content.

    More Embellishing

    More Embellishing

Magic Lining

  1. Cut 2 pieces of lining fabric, right sides together, the same shape as the pieced stocking, but 1″ longer at the opening edge. Choose this fabric carefully as it will show at the top edge on the outside of the finished stocking.
  2. Place the finished stocking front face down on top of the backing fabric (the back side of the stocking) and cut the backing piece.

    Cut 2 Lining and 1 Backing Fabric

    Cut 2 Lining and 1 Backing Fabric

  3. Layer the 4 pieces in the following order and pin together:
  • Patchwork stocking, right side up.
  • Backing, face down on right side of stocking
  • Two lining pieces right sides together on top of backing.

4. The two lining pieces will extend above the stocking. Stitch 3/8″ from the raw edges through all layers, leaving the top edge unstitched.

Layers together

Stitch 4 Layers Together

Clip the curves to the stitches being careful not to cut the stitches.

5. Turn the backing piece over the stocking so the backing is on the outside and lining is inside. Use a long, blunt tipped tool to push out the edges for a smooth, rounded finish.

6. Turn the lining down over the top edge of the stocking and turn under at the raw edge. Tuck decorative piping, lace or ribbon under the turned edge, if desired.

Turn Lining to Front

Lining over top

Edge stitch along the fold through all layers using a decorative stitch, if desired. A free-arm sewing machine makes easy work of this on the larger stocking. The smaller stocking you will need to stitch by hand. Press carefully.

7. Attach 4″ to 6″ long piece of trim or ribbon to the top corner edge for hanging. Hot glue or stitch any additional embellishments to the stocking front until you are pleased. Isn’t it darling?

These stockings are so much fun to make! Once you’ve made some for yourself, you’ll want to make them for everyone on your gift list this year. The tiny ones are precious on packages and the medium size ones make great hostess gifts. I’ve used them as place cards for dinner parties with the guests’ names peeking out of the stocking. Your guests will be so delighted when you tell them to take their stockings home.

Tiny Stocking

Tiny Stocking

2" Across Top and 5" Tall

2″ Across Top and 5″ Tall


Great on a Gift Package


Check-out my etsy site for more ideas. Go to

Merry Christmas everyone from the Christmas Angel. Love, Judy



Play Date #7 Chenille Pumpkins

August 13, 2013

It’s been a while since we have had a Play Date.  So, while making chenille pumpkins for my etsy shop, I decided my dear crafty friends might like to know how to make them also. My husband questioned the earliness of working on fall decor when it’s 100 degrees outside in Houston, Texas, but he kindly cut the sticks for the pumpkin stems the same as he does each year. Thank you, husband.

Chenille Pumpkins

Chenille Pumpkins

Supplies You Need

  • Chenille or candlestick bedspread
  • Cotton fringe from bedspread
  • One package or bottle of Rit brand dye in Sunshine Orange or Tangerine and Green found at JoAnn’s, grocery store, or craft store
  • Artificial fall leaves and berries on garland or bush found at Dollar Stores or craft stores
  • Sticks from tree for stems each 3″-4″ long and varying diameters
  • Raffia
  • Button or Carpet thread or other strong, heavy thread
  • Polyester Stuffing
  • Glue gun and glue sticks
  • Foam Core or cardboard box on which to draw templates

Instructions to Follow

1. Remove fringe from bedspread by cutting close to tape edge. Dye fringe in green dye and bedspread in orange dye following manufacturer’s directions.

2. Draw circle sizes listed below on foam core or heavy cardboard box. You want to be able to use a rotary cutter to cut bedspread around this template. Cut out templates.

Size 1          6 1/4″ diameter            9″ circumference

Size 2                9″ diameter           13″ circumference

Size 3              13″ diameter           18″ circumference

Size 4       16 1/2″ diameter            22″ circumference

Size 5       20 1/2″ diameter            30″ circumference

Circle Templates

Circle Templates

3. Place template on bedspread and use rotary cutter to cut around circle. You will be surprised how much bedspread it takes to make Size 4 and 5.

Rotary Cut Circle

Rotary Cut Circle

4. Use heavy thread double and knotted in a large eye needle to stitch around the outside edge of circle. There is no need to turn under the raw edge. Stitch close to the edge.

Gather Circle

Stitch Circle with Heavy Thread

5. Pull-up stitching as tight as possible to gather. Back stitch three times to secure.

Pull-up Gathers

Pull-up Gathers

6. Stuff pumpkin until full. The larger the pumpkin circle the larger the hole that remains. Don’t worry. It will be filled with a stick and covered with fringe.

Stuff Tightly

Stuff Tightly

7. Place stick in middle of stuffing, twisting to make a place for it. Take out stick and put hot glue in center of stuffing. Place stick back in center with a twisting motion until you feel it to the bottom. Glue fringe close to stem and going around the stem.

Insert Stick/Add Fringe

Insert Stick/Add Fringe

8. Glue leaves and berries on top of the fringe and into any space between stem and fringe.

Leaves, Berries, Raffia

Leaves, Berries, Raffia

9. Put a dab of hot glue on stem and close to pumpkin under leaves. Combine several pieces of raffia and wrap around stem starting at the dab of glue. Bring to front and tie a knot and bow with the raffia.

Add Raffia & Leaves

Add Raffia & Leaves

10. Separate and primp the raffia for finishing touch.

Happy Fall

Happy Fall

Make several more in all of the sizes to decorate your house or to give to friends. If I have a small piece of Chenille left  not large enough to cut the 9″ circumference size, I cut it just a little smaller so not to waste the scrap. Therefore, the pumpkin family below has a sixth little size.

Orange Pumpkin Family

Orange Pumpkin Family

You may prefer to make your pumpkins using the bedspread without dying it as I have done with the pumpkins below. Instead of using the dyed fringe from the bedspread I used commercially bought fringes and trims. Some of them have beads hanging from the trim. I think that’s fun. You can also use ribbon instead of raffia for a more fancy look. These white pumpkins also look really nice in a cottage chic setting. You can use them in the fall and enjoy them with your Christmas decorations also.

Neutral Pumpkin Family

White Pumpkin Family

Let me know if you make any pumpkins and send pictures. I’d love to see them. If you like the pumpkins and this looks like too much of a bother, you can purchase them in my etsy shop. I’ll continue to add fall items to my shop. So keep coming back.

Happy Fall preparations to everyone.

Love and stitches, Judy

Play Date #4 Bunnies

March 9, 2012

It’s almost Easter Time and Spring has sprung in Houston, Texas. I want to show you what I’ve been making to bring in the season!

Here they are… funny bunnies and I can’t stop making them. They are multipying like real bunnies. They are made from hand- dyed vintage candlewick and chenille bedspreads and embroidered dresser scarves.

dyed bunnies

Five Friends Who Went Through a Dye Bath

I made a few from a child’s vintage chenille bedspread with its pink and blue chenille, but no dye for this pretty white bunny. She turned out so crisp and clean that I tried a bunny out of a vintage embroidered dresser scarf. Oh, she’s a cutie, too. Hmm…how about using springtime 1940’s fabric patched together for another bunny? Oh, yes. I like that one, too.

chenille bunny, patchwork bunny and embroidered bunny

Embroidered Bunny, Patchwork Bunny and Chenille Bunny

Then it was back to dyeing  vintage embroidered dresser scarves in even more spring time Easter egg colors. Don’t you love the embroidery on his tummy?

dyed bunny

Dyed Embroidered bunny

Before I dyed the vintage bedspread, I cut it into 13″ wide strips the width of the bedspread.  The bunny body pattern is slightly over 12″ tall, and the ears are shorter. By making smaller pieces of the bedspread, I could dye them several different colors. I used dyes made for home use following the instructions on the package for dyeing in a pot. I used very hot tap water, and dyed in a large pot not used for cooking.  My wooden spoon and a measuring cup reserved for dyeing purposes only helped.   I wore rubber gloves and old clothes. I did not wash the fabric after it was dyed, because these bunnies will not be washed  again.

Household dyes

Getting Ready to Dye Chenille

The bunny pattern consists of three pieces…a body, ear, and face.

three pattern pieces

Three Pattern Pieces

I cut the body and ears double from vintage bedspread and also the ears double from a cotton fabric plus iron-on backing for extra crispness. The brand I used is by Pellon and called Decor Bond. I also cut a 3″ square of muslin and a 3″ square of paper- backed fusible web.

Cut and Ready to Start

Pieces Cut and Ready

Then I gathered together matching sewing thread,  pink and brown embroidery floss, size 8 ecru pearl cotton, two round black beads for eyes, two long pearl beads for teeth, narrow ribbon and gathered lace for neck, 2″ pom pom for tail, craft flower for between the ears, red colored pencil for cheeks, extra strength carpet thread, and stuffing. Once all of this was out, can you blame me for making more than one bunny?

supplies gathered

Supplies Gathered

So I proceded with these instructions

1. Using pattern draw circle on muslin square. Trace bunny face in circle. Iron wrong side to paper backed fusible web.


Draw Face on Muslin

2. Cut on circle line. Remove paper. Iron to head of bunny centering about 1″ from top of head. I made the face lower in some of the bunnies to give them different personalities. Machine applique face in place using matching thread. Blush cheeks with colored pencil. Sew bead eyes in place. Use 2 strands brown floss for eyelashes, and make each eyelash a single straight stitch. Use 2 strands of pink floss and an outline stitch for mouth, and satin stitch the nose. Sew teeth (long pearl beads) in place. Use single strand pearl cotton to make the whiskers in a long stitch for each whisker. Don’t worry if you don’t follow the whisker lines exactly.

face embroidered

Face Embroidered

3. Fuse backing to wrong side of each bunny ear lining following manufacturer’s instructions. Place bedspread ear and lining ear right sides together. Stitch all around leaving the bottom of ear open for turning. Make a few clips into seam. Turn right side out. I used a doll turning tool to get turning started. Press ears flat from the lining side first and then the other side. Fold ears in half with bedspread side together. Pin in center of bunny head with ear folds away from center. Pin ear tips to body to keep them out of the way when you stitch the body front to back. Stitch ears across top of head.


Pin Ears to Top of Head

4. Pin and sew bodies right sides together with a 1/4″ seam. Leave bottom open for stuffing.  Pull tip of ear pins out so you can pull on ears to turn body right side out. Use fiberfill to stuff the bunny firmly. Make sure feet are packed tightly with stuffing. Stitch bottom closed.


Stuff through Bottom Opening

5. Starting from bunny back use heavy duty thread doubled to sew a running stitch around the neck. Pull up tightly and knot thread securely

gather neck

Running Stitch to Gather for Neck


6. Add gathered lace around the neck and tack beginning and ending of lace at back. Tie ribbon on top of lace and finish with a bow. Glue a flower between the bunny ears.


In My Easter Finery

7. Glue a pom pom in place on the bunny’s backside.

cotton tail

See My Cotton Tail?

8. Now Miss Pinky is complete and she has joined her friends. Aren’t they all so happy together? I wonder if they hop out of that basket at night and run around and play.


Miss Pinky and Friends

After this little family of bunnies came together I knew I wanted you to see them.  But, I couldn’t show them to you without giving you a way to make them for yourself. So if you like these little guys, I have listed them in my etsy shop. You can order a pattern with instructions or a kit or an actual bunny finished. They will be so adorable in an Easter basket, as a hostess gift, sitting in a chair to welcome guests, as part of the Sunday Easter dinner center piece, etc. The possibilities are endless.

I just had to show you these whimsical bunnies and wish you a super spring and Happy Easter.

Until next time…Hugs, Judy

Play Date #2 Heart Pillow

January 15, 2012

Each of the holidays throughout the year is special to me for one reason or another. I decorate our home for each of these holidays or seasons, and many of the decorations are things I have created over the years. This past week I decorated for Valentine’s Day so my husband and I and any guests or family who visit can enjoy the decorations, too. In a later blog, I will show you little Valentine vignettes, but today I want to show you how to make another kind of Valentine.

The instructions for how to make this Heart Pillow are much the same as those I showed you in Play Date #1 on making Valentine Cards. You will gather some of the same supplies. My studio work table is covered with things to use for making both Valentine Cards and Heart Pillows. The pillow starts with a batting foundation, and the card starts with a paper foundation. Today let’s make the pillow.

Embellished heart

Embellished Hanging Heart

Here’s a list of things you will need: batting (I use Warm and Natural because of its firmness.), stuffing, ribbon, fabric scraps, lace, photos, sayings/quotes, buttons, beads, trinkets, patchwork pieces, mixed media samples, ephemera, glue stick, basic sewing supplies and sewing machine.

Are you ready? Let’s get started:

  1. Make a heart shape pattern. The largest heart pattern I use starts with a 10″ square of paper. Fold a square of paper in half and cut half of a heart. Open. If you are pleased with the shape and size, cut a foundation using this pattern from batting.

    batting foundation

    Cut heart pattern from batting

  2. You can cover the entire foundation with one piece of painted fabric, vintage embroidery, tea towel or quilt piece, etc.  Or, you can use bits and pieces of a combination of fabrics to patchwork the foundation. If you choose the patchwork method, start by pinning a piece of fabric right side up in the center of the heart foundation. With right sides together, stitch and flip fabric pieces out from the center until you have covered the foundation heart shape. Stitch the outside close to the edge and trim fabric even with the foundation heart.
  3. Embellish the patchwork with ribbons and laces or other trim. Add the photo, quote, and any other elements you have gathered to create an interesting and pleasing design. Pin and/or use a tiny amount of glue stick to hold the objects in place until you have stitched them to the covered foundation. When you are pleased with your design, straight stitch and/or zig zag the elements to the fabric covered foundation. Embellish further with machine or hand stitching or trinkets, buttons, beads, etc.

    Covered foundation

    Cover foundation with fabric and embellishments

  4. Cut a backing fabric using the finished heart design as a pattern. It’s possible your original heart may have shrunk slightly with the stitching and embellishing.
  5. Cut a ribbon for hanging the heart approximately 12″ long. Pin right sides together to the very top of the patchwork heart. Pin old or new lace straight edge to the outside edge of the heart, right sides together. Some lace needs to be gathered to hang nicely while other lace, usually hand crochet, needs only a slight amount of gathering to the heart front. Stitch lace and ribbon to the heart.

    lace and ribbon attached

    Pin ribbon and lace right sides together to pillow edge

  6. Pin backing heart shape right sides together with embellished heart. Stitch leaving an opening on one side large enough for you to put your hand in to stuff it. Clip top center and curves to stitching. Turn right side out. Tug gently on ribbon and lace to get the edges out. Fill  heart with stuffing and potpourri, if you like, until firm. Pin and stitch opening closed.
  7. If you want to decorate the pillow further with keys, small bottles, buttons, flowers, stickers, etc. use a glue gun to adhere to outside of heart.

    Be Mine finished

    Be Mine Heart Pillow Complete

  8. Enjoy hanging in your home, or give away to someone special.

You can see other samples of these heart pillows in my etsy shop. Just click the etsy link on the right side of this post to go there. I will have these heart pillows, Valentines and some heart designs on canvas at my nephew’s art party and sale on February 4th. If you are interested in attending, let me know and I’ll email you an invitation.

It’s been fun showing you another way I use lots of my embellishments. I hope you will express your creativity and make some of these memorable, treasured greetings for youself or someone special. Please let me hear from you and send pictures to my email address. I’d love to show them on my blog before the end of February. Happy crafting until we meet again.

Bright heart

Bright Pink Heart from paper and fabric

%d bloggers like this: