Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas sachet decorations - first one done

My intention was to do all the stitching first, then assemble all the decorations at once. Unfortunately, I haven't been working on them daily, as I should be, and I'm very far behind. My daughter is wanting to get together with a friend this weekend. One of these is for her family, and I don't know that I'll get another chance before Christmas, so I got my daughter to choose one of the pieces I'd finished stitching, and I completed it last night.

If you want to see the photos at full size, they are available here.

First off, the pattern my daughter chose. Her friend really likes green, so she picked the one with the most green in it. :-D

The pattern details in the background are for a different design I'm currently working on.

It took me a while, but I eventually figured out that I didn't have to do the embroidery on both sides of the decorations, since only one side will be visible. I'm a bit slow sometimes, but I do catch on. ;-)

Closing up the sachet. I used some ordinary embroidery thread that fairly closely matched the fabric colour and, with 2 threads on the needle, closed up the sides using a running stitch. I started at the bottom and made sure to catch the "hem" at the top. It probably would've been easier to stitch the fold over first, but I didn't want a row of stitching visible when it was done. It probably wouldn't have made a difference, though.

Flipping it right side out was a bit of a challenge. I was a touch concerned that I'd pull the sides right out. For the smaller ones, I'm going to close them up differently, so that I won't have to flip them.

For the filling, I grabbed about a tablespoon of cloves and two short cinnamon sticks. I put a bit of polyester fibre fill into the bottom of the sachet, added the cloves, added a bit more polyfill, then put in the cinnamon sticks. More polyfill went around the sticks to hold them in the middle.

As I was stuffing around the cinnamon sticks, I brought out the vanilla oil. I couldn't find potpourrie type oil in vanilla, but I did find aromatherapy oil. The eye dropper is just something from out medicine cabinet. *L* I added a drop to some of the polyfill, then wrapped it with more polyfill before tucking it behind the cinnamon sticks.

I quickly realized that polyester fibre fill does NOT hold the oil in place. You'll see more on that later.

Once I was satisfied with how much I'd stuffed it, I used the same embroidery thread as earlier to close up the top. Against, I used 2 threads on the needle, and used a button hole stitch to give a base for the crochet to come. I closed up the front and back until I got to the sticks, then did just the front for a while, then caught up the back again when I was past them.

Next, I broke out the crochet hook. I went with a 2.35mm hook and worked with the full 6 strands of embroidery thread. I started with a row of sc all along the button hole stitch edge. When I got to the end, I made a chain long enough to hang it, then slip stitched it into the beginning, making sure to get rid of any twists that happened along the way.

The next row was made up of 2 dc in each sc to get the ruffle effect. At the end I finished it off, leaving a long tail of thread behind.

Oops! Remember the issue with the oil I mentioned? It looks like the cinnamon sticks had an accident. *L*

In fastening the crochet, I worked the long thread end into the back of the crochet and button hole stitch base until the front and back diverged. Then I whip stitched behind the cinnamon sticks, adding a stitch to the front in between the sticks to close it up a bit more tightly. To finish, I worked the end into the final bit of crochet and button hole stitch to anchor it before trimming what was left.

This next bit falls thoroughly into the "I'm a flippin' idiot" category. I'd mentioned before that the metallic thread is a real pain to work with. So what do I do? Crochet with it!

I used the full 6 strands and the same size hook as before, putting 2 sc into each dc in the previous row. What a pain in the patookah!! I worked the loose end into the crochet as I went along, too. In the full size photo, you can see the ends sticking out of the crochet. They unraveled and splayed all over the place as I was working. As for the working thread, not all the strands would catch on the hook, so I'd have to undo it a bit to try again. Believe me, you don't want to be undoing more than a stitch or two with this!

It sure does look nice, though!

Of course, I had to get a picture with it in the tree. It'll wait there until my daughter takes it with her for her friend.

I like it. :-D


The Travelers Journal said...

It turned out great! It is so beautiful and I bet it smells great too!

Anna said...


The vanilla scent is pretty much the only one I can smell - but then, I have a notoriously poor sense of smell. *L*