Crafts Family

Ho ho ho, how hard can this be?

Before leading you down the winding road that was my way to a Christmas stocking, I believe there should be a little backstory first. When I had my oldest, who is now 4, I was presented with the most gorgeous Christmas stocking at my baby shower. I even knew that it was handmade, making it all the more unique. When I had my second baby, who is now 3, I was again, given a special stocking.
Now let me say, I’ve used them every year, they are proudly displayed in our home. However, I did not at first appreciate their beauty and, I need to say, difficulty.
This past March, my husband and I have been very fortunate in welcoming a third baby, and though he doesn’t understand things yet, being only 8 months old, I want his Christmas to be special too. As you can imagine, this is where my Christmas stocking conundrum started.
After searching tireless hours, I ran across a stocking I believed to be equal parts gorgeous and price-conscious. Imagine my surprise when I receive a stocking kit! Now, I am not one to back down from a challenge, but I have a newfound appreciation for the gifts I’ve been given for my first two babies. This person didn’t give me just a stocking, a decoration to some that just gets hung every year, they gave me countless hours of their time it took to make one of these, whether they used a kit or not. So, I would like to take you on a journey. This journey involves painful fingers from the overuse of scissors, pricks with needles, and cramps from small objects. It involves directions, which though they have been wonderfully written, took time to master for someone who isn’t so inclined in arts and crafts. This journey chronicles many hours of putting together a stocking, one that my 8 months old *may* appreciate at some point in their future. Like when they’re 30, ha! Part I Part I begins with a serious moment of inner reflection which involved many questions such as how did I get myself into this; why am I not more artsy-craftsy; when my baby grows up is he going to hate this? I began to realize that as they say practice makes perfect, even something like arts and crafts which I never particularly gave a chance before. This means that my stocking began with a hard look at the instructions that came with it and that in and of itself was a learning curve. Never before making such a thing, not even really sewing anything besides an occasional button, it took a moment for me to realize what the instructions were saying to me.

After an hour or two of studying the above picture with great scrutiny, I figured out just where to start, setting down to the hard journey ahead, but not before making one more purchase. It hadn’t dawned on me until that moment that in order to make the stocking look more 3-D it needed a filler. Duh! So, with a small detour down the proverbial lanes of an online shopping app, I put a filler into the cart, then sat down for the hard work ahead.
Working another hour or two, then realizing It was close to midnight, I decided it was time to document my progress and call it a night. No doubt the person I was making this for would be up soon because, in our house, sleep is overrated.

Over the next couple of days, I finally had enough experience to pick up the pace. It was slow-going work, but it was going. Day 2 brought me a little closer to my goal. I was proud of the leaves that I made, even if my sequenced border was a little askew. Thankfully, this time the progress took less time than it did on the first day, a sign that everything can be learned.

By Day 3, the Santa on the stocking finally had what started to look like a body. Sure, there was only one leg and no head, but in my eyes, it was coming together. His boot was nicely filled with the filler that I purchased and his shirt had some decorations on it. By then, I even learned that pinning things in place was a good idea and thankful for the pins that were provided in a sewing kit I purchased not long before this project arrived at my doorstep.

Now that I had no doubt I’d spent at least ten hours total on the project, I was only on step 10 of what is proving to be an 80 step process. Keeping my eye on the prize, a beautifully finished stocking, I put my work down for the day so as to decorate the house for Christmas. Even if the stocking would go up late, maybe the 8-month-old wouldn’t care as much as I do.
Stay tuned for Part II…

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