I mentioned in my last post about including a new Christmas tree ornament for both the girls in their Christmas Eve box. Back in 2014, I made a "First Christmas" ornament for Mia. I wanted to make one for Jess, and for my new nephew, Henry, this year. And of course, Mia would need one too.
I started off with an idea in my head of snowflakes embroidered on felt and made into baubles. Having unsuccessfully hunted for snowflake designs on Pinterest (ones I liked anyway), I designed my own. I think it was the first time I had used a protractor since I was at school! I designed four snowflakes with an idea of a cushion - I can't share the cushion. It isn't finished yet!
The first ornament I made was for Henry, my nephew.
We met him for the first time at the start of December when we celebrated Christmas with my brother and sister-in-law.
I also used the snowflakes patterns to make Jessica's ornament. It's made up slightly differently to Henry's. I'm not sure which I prefer.
I had a rummage in my sewing supplies and found some hand-dyed felt and seed beads which I've had in my stash for years and years. So Jessica's bauble is backed in a marbled blue hand-dyed felt and I added seed beads to the front which really catch the light as it hangs on the tree.
Having prepared snowflakes for everyone I was scrolling through Instagram and came across a picture from @cathyeliot - she had shared an absolutely beautiful Christmas tree ornament. I messaged her and asked if it was available as a pattern. It wasn't, but she was so kind and sent me the pattern that evening. If you have a moment, please go an check out her stunning embroidery on Instagram!
I made up this ornament for Mia.
Again I used the handy-dyed felt to back it and added seed beads to the front. I think this was my favourite ornament of the year!
And then, this final Christmas tree ornament was for Alison, who is our fabulous childminder.
I really, really enjoyed doing this embroidery on felt. Because you can't see through felt to trace a pattern, and as I yet I haven't found anything that reliably marks felt without damaging the surface, I use a product called Golden Threads paper. I originally bought it for foundation piecing, but moved over to freezer paper for that a few years ago, so I have a huge roll of the paper left over. I trace the design onto it - it's very thin, like tissue paper, then tack it onto the front of the felt. I embroidered the main elements through the paper, thn removed the paper. I added the beads and lazy daisy stitches after I'd removed the paper. I used Finca #16 perle thread for all the embroidery and the beads are from Mill Hill. Each ornament is filled with just a little bit of toy stuffing and finished round the edge with blanket stitch.