February 9, 2008

My niece’s Christmas stocking

Posted in Cross Stitching tagged , , , , at 6:06 pm by Lauren

I’m under the impression that if I think more about cross stitch, I will be motivated to do more. In that spirit, I’m posting pictures of my niece’s Christmas stocking. I completed the stitching in February 2007, too late for her first Christmas (not that she’d notice). This fall, Cate did the finishing, which looks quite professional. I presented the stocking to Stephanie (my sister-in-law, Katherine’s mom) in December. And yesterday, I received pictures of the stocking for my (and Cate’s) stitching portfolio. So here they are:

Katie Stocking

Katie Stocking 2

The pattern is Shepherd’s Bush “Elizabeth” stocking. Shepherd’s Bush has adorable designs – however, because adorable is not usually what I want for my walls and because their colors are often very pale, I don’t often do Shepherd’s Bush patterns. But I love their stockings.

My mom stitched a Shepherd’s Bush stocking each for Allen and I (“Peter” and “Christian” – yes, I demanded a boy’s stocking, with apologies and thanks to my mother, who’d planned to make me a girl’s one). I plan to continue that if we have kids. Despite my waffling about having children, I have purchased and “reserved” my favorite new Shepherd’s Bush stockings for my hypothetical children (“Reed” and “Jillian”). Stitching is a sickness, sometimes.

I made several changes from the pattern to Katie’s stocking. The Shepherd’s Bush stocking charts don’t include a placement guide for the buttons and charms. (Shepherd’s Bush, if you’re reading, that is rather annoying.) So I moved the charms around as it suited me. A small star charm found a new home as the dot on the I. The two golden trees now serve as bookends to my “signature.” After I failed to initial or sign Katherine’s birth piece, Stephanie said I should sign this one. I chose the light yellow from the piece and stitched a message to Katie, “With love from Aunt Lauren.” I liked the choice of light yellow because you can read the message when close to the stocking, but from afar it looks like some neutral design around the feet of the angel. It’s unimposing.

Cate created her own pattern to finish the stocking, which is quite impressive. (Again, Shepherd’s Bush, this would be a useful supplemental chart to include or sell.) I chose a dusty blue corduroy for the backing. Inside (for those lucky enough to look!) is a lining of light yellow fabric covered with stars. Cate stitched it all together and did the cording. I think she did a fantastic job!

This isn’t really a project to undertake lightly, from a financial standpoint anyway. I may have spent $75-100 on the materials (linen, DMC perle cotton, chart ($6), charms ($20), and finishing materials ($15)). Costs for finishing in a cross stitch shop run from $75-100 as well. (Yay for Cate!) But the stitching itself is far easier than it looks to the uninitiated. In fact, it was one of the easiest projects I’ve done. The high count on the linen is the stitching equivalent of a large-print book. Because of that, the piece worked up very quickly, though I had to cut shorter lengths of the perle cotton because the more you pull it through the linen, the more it frazzles. I completed the piece in about three months. Knowing that Katherine will have this stocking for a long time makes it all worth it.

Now I’m wondering – between Allen’s sister and my three brothers – how many nieces and nephews am I going to have?



  1. Sara said,

    Lauren, This is LOVELY! I loved it when you showed me back in August, I think. Wow. I’m jealous of your neice and all future neices and nephews and even your children. You’ve also inspired me to get back to my stiching. I have two scarves to finish up and then I’ll be on to stitching. Thank you! Again, gorgeous work from both you and Cate.

  2. […] it – to show my tardiness for posterity and confuse people about her birth year, I suppose. I stitched Elizabeth’s Stocking from Shepherd’s Bush for Katie, with some tweaks in charm placement and the addition of a personal message in very light […]

  3. Karen said,

    I didn’t discover that there actually IS a charm placement guide till after I had inadvertently flipped open the charm packet piece of what I’ll card cardboard that is stapled to the plastic charm packet after I had probably done 7 of the stockings!!. Would be nice if SB did mention that on their charts. I just finished Elisabeth’s stocking and my problem is I have 14 yellow beads left over and can’t figure out where they go, the placement directions only mention the use of 6.

    • Lauren said,

      Karen, thanks! I had no idea!

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