Sunday, November 4, 2012

DIY no sew burlap stockings

Here's the thing about me... I'm an engineer. That roughly translates to no artistic ability whatsoever. It also translates to minimal patience for tricky apparatuses such as sewing machines. However, now that we're homeowners and have a little person, I would really like to make the holidays magical for him the way they were for me. My mom is a professional artist and my dad a professional photographer (I have no idea how I inherited 0 of those abilities but own at science) and growing up they decked the house out for Christmas. Inside and out I felt like I was living in a satellite campus of the North Pole and I couldn't have been more joyful about this season because of it.

But now that we're homeowners and have a little person, we also have minimal expendable income. We already have a tree from previous years, so that's in the bag. I'm probably not going to decorate much outside the house with regard to lights because Jon and I are both afraid of heights and have a single outlet located in the garage but nowhere else outside, but I intend on hanging the Christmas lights we already own in our giant picture window in the living room. But what about inside the house beyond that? Stockings were definitely in order because filled stockings were most definitely a gift Santa bestowed upon us growing up. I resolved myself to make cheap no sew burlap stockings for each of us this year. All I needed was some burlap, no sew tape (I used Stitch Witchery), white fabric, adhesive paper, hot glue, stamps/ink, some fun things to stick on them, and cord to hang them with.

To make these, create a template (I used white paper) of how you want your stocking to look. Fold burlap in half (so there are 2 layers to it) and pin the pattern to it. Then cut it out. Remove the pattern and unpin for the purpose of using the no sew tape.
You are left with 2 symmetrical stocking templates:

 Little by little, place the no sew tape on the edges (but not the top!) of your stocking and heat with the iron. You may need to put little slits in the tape as you move around the curved portion of the stocking:
Cut slits on the two edges of the top of the stocking and apply the tape there as well to get a nice, smooth opening. When you are done, turn it right side out (so your seams are inside):
To attach a name, apply iron-on adhesive to some light colored fabric. Using stamps and ink pads, stamp your family members' names onto the white fabric.
Use patterned scissors to get a fun edge for the names. Disregard the bicycles in this picture--we had an idea that I ultimately ended up not using.
Iron on the adhesive names. Using a hot glue gun, decorate however you would please. Also use hot glue to attach a cord by which to hang the stockings. I actually cheated a tad here and had my mom sew the cords on because I have a feeling these will be heavy stockings and hot glue would just be a temporary solution.
I love my stocking and the bow tie on Jon's stocking (my friend Tessa came up with that idea). I'm not sold on the decorations on Jon's or Elden's though. When I originally bought the flowers for mine we were in a hurry at Hobby Lobby and Jon was noncommittal about picking his decorations in such a short amount of time, so those are more of a temporary placeholder. The nice thing about using hot glue is that they should peel off relatively easily for replacement decorations. Since my mom had leftover burlap from our baby shower and stamps, various decorations, fabric, ink, the scissors, and hot glue, this entire project ultimately only cost me around $7 for the stitch witchery, cord, and flowers I used on mine. Not to mention the sentimental value of knowing I created these (with LOTS of help). Now that I conquered this beast I can't wait to figure out my next holiday decor DIY project!


  1. Those look beautiful!

  2. VERY nice Dani. BTW, you did inherit the "not super skilled at art requiring use of your hands" gene from me. I may be creative with a camera, but I'm horrible with drawing, painting, coloring, etc. You, however, seem to be overcoming your artistic challenges. Great job.

  3. Hello! Just found this tutorial for burlap stockings, and I'm gonna give it a go tomorrow. Thanks for the help, and I'm one of your new followers on Bloglovin :)
    XO/Kelly @ Our Cone Zone