Inked and Quilted mini Christmas Tree Skirt

I've been working on my family Christmas tree skirt over the past few years. Usually I'll pull it out from the Christmas closet in November and add some beading or applique or whatever suits my fancy. This year I had intended to make an additional Christmas tree skirt in October, start embellishing that one, thus I would eventually have two complete skirts ready to pass on to my two children when they were ready for a family Christmas tree of their own some day.

Here are a couple photos of the full-sized skirt. You can read the complete story here.

I like to use a shimmery tablecloth for the under layer.

You can see the tiny bit of sparkle showing through the snowflake.

Well, search and search as I might, I could not find anything suitable. Note to self, buy that tablecloth now while there are lots of subtly shimmery tablecloths out there! Or better yet, when they go on sale just after the Holidays. 

My second option was to make a smaller skirt for my tiny white feather tree.

After working on such a large skirt, this tiny version whipped up in no time flat! It's really quite easy, and I would suggest it for a first time project if you're new at hand stitching in the Alabama Chanin style or just want a quick project.

I made a paper template, a 23 inch round circle. I used Alabama Chanin 100% organic medium weight cotton jersey in the Natural color. I cut two circles, and stencil/painted the top layer with my poppies stencil.

Since I was using the inked and quilted method, I used a grey Sharpie (not an easy color to find, mind you) to outline around each of the painted elements. I found it easier to do the drawing before the layers were quilted together, so I didn't have to worry about accidentally getting Sharpie on the threads. 

I then put the painted layer on top of the bottom layer, both sides facing up, and pinned the layers together. Using white Coats and Clark Button Craft thread I stitched 1/8" inside the lines of each element to quilt the two layers together.

Next, I used a four or five inch wide strip in white jersey to create a very large "pull". I then couched this "pull" on the very edge of the skirt with some sparkly embroidery floss.

Here's a close-up of the couched edging.

And here's the underside of the couched edging.

I appliqued a few areas and added French knots. Then I embellished just a bit more by sewing a smattering of white Alabama eyelets. It needs some blingy bits, but I'll do that down the road as the Holidays are upon us and time is running short.

Now's the time for Christmas tree hunting...

And ornament making......

My mother has started a Thanksgiving tradition of placing a Christmas ornament at each place setting for the guest to take home with them. This year I made these woolen ornaments. I was inspired by Purl Soho's Heirloom wool ornaments; and also the book, Scandinavian Needlecraft by Clare Youngs. I've made some of her sweet projects before, and they're simple yet beautiful.

The woolen bird is now at home on the tiny white feather tree.

I'll leave you with a little winter snow. This is what I saw outside my window as I started this post...

And this is what I saw at the finish .....

P.S. I took a little video where you could see the snow softly fluttering down. Alas, I cannot figure out how to successfully post the video. I tried converting it via Movie Maker. No luck.  If anyone has any suggestions, I would be most delighted to give it a try.


  1. Oh so beautiful....the tree skirt is quiet like snow! Thank you for your inspiration to be creative. I love that came to teach at Makers, please come more.

    1. Thank you. I so enjoy coming up to Makers. It's an inspiration for me as well!

  2. Very lovely. Where do get glittery, sparkly embroidery floss? What brand?
    Vancouver Barbara

  3. Hi Barbara~ I've just checked and the label is gone, but I believe it is DMC metallic pearl cotton, available at Joann's and Michael's in the embroidery floss section. The hank is a little larger than usual and just off to the side of the normal floss. Here's a link: It's not as smooth and easy to work with as normal floss, but it's so pretty, it's worth the extra effort!

  4. What a wonderful gift to pass down.