Gifts I've made, pressies, Stitching Santa
Comments 29

Stitching Santa 2016 – The Reveal

3 years ago Sheila from Sewchet thought up the fantastic idea for us crafty folk to have a Secret Santa, and called it Stitching Santa!  I didn’t join in the first year, I was a little shy as I’d not been blogging very long, but jumped in feet first when it was announced the year after.

Up until I joined in for the first time in 2015 (read about my reveal here) I never dreamt that I’d have anything under my tree that would make me proper excited just like when I was a child.  But Stitching Santa did just that!  It was like believing in Father Christmas all over again!

My parcel arrived and took pride of place under the tree.  It came from Kim who blogs at The Material Lady.

On Christmas morning H had set his alarm for 6am, and I leapt out of bed too at this time to open my special pressies when I heard him getting up!

The first gift I found as I opened my parcel was a pattern magazine.  It was a burda style, but in Spanish, with lots of patterns inside.  Lots of tracing…..she must have read about my crazy love of tracing….I’ve one or 2 patterns traced off that I’ve not even cut out yet.   I just find it really therapeutic!


There’s some very stylish makes, and very on trend, I think sometimes the Europeans are quite a bit more ahead of us in the fashion stakes.

I’ll need to learn fabric types, especially needing to know if a stretch or woven is required, one of the first things I might make is this dress…..  You can’t see properly but there’s a peplum that stops short of the front, and it’s more fitted that it looked in the line drawing.  I think the detail at the bottom would draw the eye away from my not so narrow waist!


Then there was a toiletries bag filled with goodies…… Kim used a free pattern from Rhonda’s Creative Life.  I’m not going to use it for toiletries as I don’t want to spoil it, instead I’m going to use if to take my ‘to-do’ stuff to work – that’ll be my iPad, it’s charger and whatever crochet or hand sewing I have on the go.  It drives me mad if we have a quiet spell and i’ve nothing with me to do.  It’s usually just on the seat next to me in a carrier bag and it all ends up all over the place when I brake hard – which happens quite a lot when some plonker doesn’t hear the sirens or see the blue lights!



Not only had Kim been busy sewing, she’d been crocheting too.  She made me these cute face scrubbies too from The Stitchin’ Mommy.  These are just fab!  I thought they were too nice to use too and put them on display in my bathroom but did use them and they’re ace!  Even H thinks so – I’m going to make him some blue ones so he doesn’t pinch mine!


And she’s been doing some sticking and gluing too!  She made me this fabric covered notebook – she must have seen my comment admiring Sheila’s on her blog when she wrote a tutorial how to make one.  I’m going to use it for my sewing plans and aspirations for 2017.


As well as been busy making, Kim also managed to spend the £10 wisely definitely got value for money – there must be a bit of a Yorkshire lass in there somewhere!

Snippers!!  These are fab!  I’ve always wanted some off these as I’ve seen other sewers wearing them round their neck.  So a couple of years ago i bought some, but they just wouldn’t snip properly.  These certainly do and have been put to good use already!


A cow tape measure!  I must admit I wondered what it was at first, until I pulled one of it’s ears!  How cute!  This will be handy for in my handbag.  I usually keep a normal one but it gets tangled.

A bobbin and thread matcher upper!  What a good idea, I’ve seen these on blogs but not in real life!


A bias maker, this can also be used to add fusible iron on bias onto fabric, I’ve seen this online too and will investigate further!


Thank you so much Kim for your presents and all the thought that’s gone into them!  And thankyou to the management for wrapping them up and posting them off.   I feel very lucky considering how poorly you’ve been, you must have gotten started in good time to get all the handmade gifts made in time.

Now onto what I made/bought and collected to send off to my Stitching Santa recipient who was Rita from Rita’s Design.

She’s Hungarian but now lives in Germany with her husband and 2 young boys.  I already follow Rita but reread some of her older blog posts and did quite a bit of stalking and rummaging around her blog to get a feel for what I thought I could made and buy her to go in her special parcel.

I started acquiring a few bits and pieces to go in the parcel even before Stitching Santa had been announced and before knowing who I’d be playing Santa for.  Stitchy sorts of things that would suit anyone into sewing. I then added some more after stalking Rita’s blog.

The animal fabric is left from the quilt I made for a new member of the family.  There was a decent fat quarter ish size left and I thought maybe it would come in useful for making something for her boys.

The reusable swatch kit was a spare one from a giveaway I’d previously organised.

And then the 2 patterns were freebies from magazines – with Rita not being from England I thought it would be unlikely that she would have them, and reading her  blog I learnt  she’s venturing into the world of sewing with jersey.

And my copy of Love Sewing Magazine – I wouldn’t normally part with this so easily but as it was late being despatched they sent subscribers an e version, so I was happy for Rita to have my hard copy.


And just a few more freebies….!  A Yorkshire tea bag!  Hopefully Rita will enjoy this whilst sat sewing at her machine.

A heart shaped squishy tree decoration – this was from Cyber mom – it could also double up as a pin cushion.

8 pieces of fabric that came free with a magazine.

A tunisian crochet hook.  I’ve no idea if Rita can do tunisian crochet, but she’s very crafty so I imagine she can turn her hand to anything!

And finally a couple of embroidery threads which have been added to my stash from someone elses so also count as ‘free’!



Now onto to how I spent my £10.  I was very mindful that I couldn’t buy anything too heavy as I was posting my parcel abroad.

When I went to the Knitting and Stitching show back in November I spent all the money there (except the spool) and got lots for my money!!

The first thing I bought was these cute jeans/pants pattern which would be perfect for her boys!  Only £1.50!! The lady said “you do know it’s in German?”.  Of course I did – and Rita’s learning German so no problem!  Hopefully they’ll be straight forward!


This was the biggest purchase – it’s ones of those things that flips onto your wrist and has a magnetic pin holder attached!


Some embroidery scissors.  Last year Sheila gave me some with a needle keeper attached.  I pinched the idea and used one of the squares that I’d made when I went to Raggedy Annie’s class at the Fabbadashery.


And finally this spool of gorgeous tape that I picked up from TKMAX very cheaply!  I did by too so I can sew them in things I make too!


And a made a few things too…..

I didn’t have a lot of time in front of my machine so set about early in December to crochet  a scarf for Rita.  I had just one ball of this yarn in my stash so it was never going to be very big, and I couldn’t go out and buy another!  So it’s quite thick and just long enough to tuck under a coat.


And a zipper pouch in some Liberty cotton I had left from making my PJs….. I used the cover stitch in an attempt to do some fancy quilting, and also to insert the zip.


So that’s my round up of Stitch Santa 2016!

I have loved taking part, have loved reading all the reveals and seeing what everyone else has sent and received and made,  and really really can’t thank Sheila enough for organising.

Fingers crossed we can do it all again in 2017!!


  1. What a brilliant post of all things given and received – so glad you enjoyed it again and pleased to hear that you’re up for it again next year 😀👏🏻

  2. Wow that post just went on and on… what a lot of fabulous gifts!! I don’t know who was more lucky, you or your giftee! 🙂
    I have some similar snips but orange, LOVE them. It hard to get your head around using them at first when you’re used to little scissors, but I can’t use anything else now. So easy to grab!
    I have been tempted to buy some face scrubbies like that on etsy… you may have persuaded me…

    • Or you could drop hints when stitching santa comes round again, but then it’d be too long to wait. I’ve never seen crocheted ones before, at first glance I thought they were coasters that weren’t quite flat! 🙂

  3. Wonderful gifts received and given.
    I reckon I might be up to it next year! Sounds like I should start collecting and making little bits and pieces soon, otherwise my fine ideas will go the same way as they did this year.

    • I think that’s a good idea Anne, there’s so much happening in the run up to Christmas it’ll take some of the pressure off. I’m going to start keep more of an eye out in Charity Shops for patterns and sewing related books, I’ve seen some proper bargains out there on other peoples blogs. 🙂

  4. Amazing gifts given and received! Loved reading how you put your parcel together for your recipient. Such a fun challenge, isn’t it, combining a tiny budget with unlimited found freebies? You did so well on both ends of the exchange.

    • I really did, it’s more special because you know whoever has put your pressies together has put a lot of thought into it. Rita contacted me today to say her parcel should be arriving today or tomorrow – she didn’t end up going to Hungary for Christmas so has to wait for her parcel to go to Germany! This is gonna be a well travelled package! 🙂

  5. Great stuff! I know Kim was unwell leading up to Christmas but I think she put together a great parcel for you (with the help of the Management /Wrapping Dept. 😉 ) and you obviously put tons of thought into the gifts for your recipient too. I’m in for next year again if Sheila feels up to it – I think we are all making everybody very envious so her list of participants is going to keep growing.

    • Her list will be huge! She may have to enlist helpers, it can’t be an easy task co-ordinating it all. I think she did mention that she may have to put a cap on it so we’d best get our names down quick! 🙂

  6. You lucky ducky! I’m inspired to do something next year, I’d never heard of it before. I think you had a very thoughtful lady sending your present and her present was fab too!

    • I really did, I was so lucky! Reading all the other reveals there’s some very thoughtful and generous Stitching Santas out there! 😃

  7. I’m so glad you enjoyed your parcel. I was sad not to get a trip into Birmingham for a bit of madness in the parcel but I just didn’t have the energy. Feeble woman 😞.
    You identified the frugal northern lass in me! I chose things I either had and used constantly (the snips and binding maker) or would choose for myself so I’m relieved they went down well.
    I’m sure your parcel will be well received – you packed some real treasure!

  8. Hey Ali, I finally received my parcel a couple of hours ago and I love it all! I wanted to let you know right away. Thank you so much! You and the presents are amazing! I’ll try to post about it on the weekend if the boys let me! 🙂

    • Aw, thanks Rita, I’m blushing here! So glad it’s finally with you and you’re happy with it. It’s a good job you do otherwise it would have been a right anti climax! ☺

  9. What a splendid post for goodness’ sake given and got – so happy you delighted in it again and satisfied to hear that you’re available again one year from now

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