I’m beginning to think about Christmas!
My local quilt shop, Meissner’s in Folsom, recently began to stock Radiance fabric . Radiance is a Robert Kaufman fabric that is 55% cotton and 45% silk. I love the sheen of Radiance and use it frequently in my work. But it was languishing on their shelves and I began to think that customers just didn’t know what to do with it, thinking that it might be fussy. Well it’s not fussy at all, it just requires a few accommodations.
So I thought I’d whip up a sample Christmas stocking out of Radiance. While I was at it, I added some Texture Magic and FusiKnit, two products that they carry and I also use. It was a fun little romp of a project and for once in my life, I kept it simple!
I’m pretty happy with how it turned out-elegant and edited. I almost always stabilize Radiance when I work with it since it has a very soft hand. In this case I chose FusiKnit. FusiKnit does have a bit of a woven texture to it and, in a happy surprise, it added texture that gave the Radiance a Shantung kind of look-very subtle but nice. And it gave it good body which you want for a stocking.
I haven’t used Texture Magic a lot, but I do like the interesting results I get with it. In this case I just did a simple grid over the Radiance and the Texture Magic. Apparently when I have used Texture Magic previously, I must have overheated it because it left a pretty rigid feel afterwards. This time I read the directions, what a concept, and kept my heat a bit lower for the steaming and it left a much softer hand.
If you’re not familiar with Texture Magic, it is a steam-activated shrinking fabric made of polyester. When steam is applied, the fabric shrinks 30% in all directions, giving delightful texture to your piece.
Once I had steamed the cuff, I decided it needed just a bit of bling so I added green seed beads. I think it is just the right touch for the cuff.
I thought that a Christmas stocking just begged for my curve motif-especially in metallic thread! That motif requires two passes so that each curve is stitched twice-no more, no less. I took a photo as I was stitching to show that you don’t want to fill in every single space as you go through on the first pass. It’s good to leave some open space to fill on the second pass through-it gives a more elegant and well-spaced look.
Once I had all those curves in, I knew it needed a grid for balance. I love the look of this modified grid I learned from my Quilting Hero, Diane Gaudynski who calls this “Dianeshiko”. And of course, the intersections needed beads.
I finished the inside with Radiance lining. I love a luxurious lining in my garments-why not do the same for a stocking? If you are local, drop by the Folsom Meissner’s to see the stocking. If I had time I would get more Radiance and make a table runner and a tree skirt, sigh.