Tawn Hunka is back on the blog today just in time for Christmas with another creative smocked Christmas Ornament. Tawn is the designer behind the Sewing Machine Bobbin and Thread Spool Ornaments, Antique Thimble Ornaments, and Just Another Thread Spool Ornament. Tawn's wonderful ornaments are becoming an annual tradition at Pink Hollybush and I know you are just going to love her latest! So here is Tawn...
Smock a simple design to fit the rectangle of size of ornament you are making. I pleated 8 rows, back smocked 6 rows and smocked 4 using Jerry Stocks “Christmas Trees” smocking plate. After doing a single tree, I decided to do a whole width of fabric (I used Pique Petite Point as I liked the texture). I was able to get 7 trees across the width. The last tree is one extra row of smocking.
My ornaments are 3 and 3/4 inches in diameter with a cut out rectangle that is 1 and 1/4 inches wide by 1 and 3/4 inches height.
I back smocked three extra pleats on each side of the trees.
Trim excess fabric from smocked insert - I had one width of a pleat that was not smocked on each side that I pressed flat.
Trim away the holding rows at the top and bottom. Block the insertion piece ensuring the extra fabric is flat.
Remove pleating threads, here is the trimmed piece all set and ready for insertion.
Cut 2 circles from the wool felt for each ornament. Cut a circle from a light weight batting that is just about 1/4 - 1/2 inches smaller (depending on the depth of your blanket stitch) than the ornament felt circles. You do not want to have to stitch through the batting while hand stitching the blanket stitch.
Draw the rectangle on the wrong side of ornament top wool felt circle. I used a plastic grid template sheet to keep each ornament as uniform as possible. Cut out the rectangle.
Place both wool felt circles together and sew small button holes evenly above rectangle cut out. I measured in about a 1/4 inch from the outer side edges of the rectangle and about 1/4 of an inch from the top edge of the circle, leaving room for the blanket stitch. This is where the ribbon will go in order to hang the ornament.
Lay smocked insert into the opening and pin in place. The rectangle should surround the 3 extra smocked pleats and the smocking should be centered inside the opening. Ensure the side edges of the insert are flat and straight along the sides of the wool felt.
Using a small zig-zag stitch, stitch around the opening just at the cut edge of the wool felt and then into the wool felt on all sides. Be careful to keep the pleats even across the top and bottom and do not catch the edge pleat in the zig-zag. I used a 1.5 width and the length was 1 on my machine.
I used my tuck foot to keep one of the grooves right along the edge of the wool felt.
Trim about 1/2 inch from the top of the light weight batting and insert between the 2 layers of wool felt.
The flat edge of the batting butts up against the button holes.
Using the button hole stitch, hand stitch around the outer edge of the ornament. I used #8 perle cotton thread. Insert ribbon and tie a knot at the top.
I hope you enjoy making this lovely ornament from Tawn. Have a very Merry Christmas!