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the various and sundry creations of sylvus tarn
Holly Stocking,
traditional topic with traditional colors even...

As I mentioned previously, some of the more modern stockings are for people a little further out of my original family orbit. This stocking was made for a thoroughly amiable young man of my acquaintance whom I don't know especially well; so I wasn't able to come up with any iconography specific for him.

stocking, completed Jan 2007. Felt, cotton, wool, sequins, beads (mostly glass, at least one malachite;) Techniques: tassel making, machine and hand embroidery, cord making

So, since the poinsetta stocking was at that time my fave, I decided to make another with similar theme and color scheme: hence holly. And since this one was made entirely with that good quality, deep rich red felt I got at Habermann's, I like the way the colors came out very much. The tiny sections of red and green fabric on the holly leaves are bits of silk scraps from my summer ao dai, which I had made for me when I went to Viet Nam. Look closely at the lower holly leaf, and you can see a small malachite bead as well. The holly leaves themselves are outlined with some beautiful hand painted wool yarn in blues and greens.

Since the poinsetta stocking wasn't sullied by cheapo jingle bells, this one wasn't either. I used hand painted cotton to make the hanging cord; and discovered the irritating fact of life that if the cotton pieces are not exactly the same thickness, length and twist-tightness, getting disparate types to wind evenly into a cord is a major headache—normally of course, one uses one piece of solid colored thread, allowed to run free amongst the 8 hooks that stretch it (4 on each end) while the machine winds. But, in order to get the colors to work the way I wanted them to, I had to cut the fibers, assort fibers, and just generally curse the fact that like so many things in life, my grand plans never work out as simply as I think they ought.

Given that all the stockings without names have proven to be somewhat more flexible family treasures, (also the fact that I was horrendously late, since this xmas present went out approximately around the beginning of February) not to mention the one it was based on had no name, I just put a pattern on the flap, using some of my favorite shiny red-and-green thread and the diamond cam. I thought that part turned out reasonably well. Alas, the same cannot be said of my efforts to stitch the thing together. Ah well.

file started 6jan08, completed 7jan. Photography 1/22/2007.