Celebrating the feast of St Nicholas

Sew a Christmas stocking this year for a family member

The feast of St Nicholas is next week on December 6. St Nicholas was born in the 3rd Century and devoted his life to help the sick and needy, particularly children. He was venerated throughout Europe and died on December 6. From the 13th Century onwards, it became customary for bishops to give out small gifts to children who on the feast of St Nicholas had served the Church in his honour. In some countries, presents are still exchanged on this date instead of Christmas Day.

Sew a Christmas stocking this year for a family member and fill it with their favourite sweets or homemade mince pies and gingerbread. You can give this on December 6 to honour St Nicholas or you can wait until Christmas Day.

You will need

You will need one sheet of A2 card, patterned fabric, red and white felt, scissors, sewing needles, pins, measuring tape, thread and embroidery thread.


Cut the template for your stocking out from the sheet of card. It should measure at least 23cm wide and 50cm long. Fold your fabric in half, pin the template to it and cut out.

Use the stocking template as a guide for making the reindeer and letter templates so that you donít make them too big to fit onto the stocking. When you sew your stocking together, youíll use a 1cm seam allowance. Draw a 1cm border inside the stocking template and draw the reindeer and letter templates inside this.

Pin the templates to the felt and cut out. Position the felt shapes onto one stocking half where you want to sew them and pin in place.

Use white embroidery thread and a running stitch for the reindeer and green embroidery thread for the letters and the snowflake.

Place the other stocking half over your design and pin together, using a 1cm seam allowance. Leave an opening at the top and tack together, removing the pins as you do so. Make a loop with some ribbon and sew this onto the corner at the top of the stocking.

Stitch it together by hand or if you have experience with a sewing machine you can use this. Remove the tacking thread.

Take a piece of fabric – with a different pattern – measuring 9cm wide and 46cm long and pin it around the top of the stocking. Sew it on along the sides. Turn your stocking inside out and fold down the top so the green material shows.