Slitting open the plastic wrap on a box of new matching Christmas balls or snowflakes or whatever just seems wrong to me. I don't know what it is. I like my ornaments either handmade, vintage or as gifts. I like being surprised by what I see on someone's Christmas tree. Uniformity (of colour/of ornaments/etc) can be lovely of course....but in a department store tree, not in a family tree.
If I were to go for uniformity (which would mean not hanging up so many sentimental ornaments, a thing my husband would never allow, the big softie), I would go with a woodland theme: acorn garland, pinecones dusted with fake snow or glitter, clusters of holly, little fabric birds nestled on the branches, and toadstools — like the little red and white felt one pictured above. I was inspired by the toadstool rattles and terrariums my friend Holly makes (and will be selling at City of Craft in Toronto next weekend). It was so easy, I barely had to neglect my child to make this one in about 15 minutes. Of course, you can see that my stitches aren't even, but I wasn't aiming for that sort of aesthetic. (Call it a design decision, and you don't have to apologize for your mistakes.)
-scrap of red felt
-scrap of white or off-white felt
-handful of poly batting
-needle and thread (I used brown because I wanted my stitches to show, but white or red would look good too)
-6-inch piece of string for hanging the ornament
Cut out the following:
-3-inch diameter circle of red felt
-2 1/2-inch diameter circle of white or off-white felt
-Approx. 2-inch square (for stem) you can see in the picture mine's a bit bigger.
-3/4-inch diameter circle of white or off-white felt
-a few small circles of white or off-white felt for the spots on the top
You don't have to follow the instructions in this exact order. But this is what I did. First, I pinned the white circle to the red circle (the red circle is bigger, so it will gather as you sew. This will give you a nice, round top when you stuff it. Pin one side together, and then the other. Then pin between those two, so the excess on the bigger red piece is distributed evenly). Then stitch together. Don't worry about being perfect. Stop stitching when you have just a 1 1/2-inch opening left, like this:
Next, grab your square of white felt, and make a tube, overlapping a little. Stitch together along that seam, like this:
Take the stem and the top and stitch together like this:
I think it would be easier to stitch your spots on first, but I did it this way so they would follow the curve of the toadstool top. It may not really matter. Either way, stitch your spots on, like so: (I put on three, but you could do more)
I used a short piece of hemp to make the string for the ornament, but you could use embroidery floss, string, or whatever you have. I tied a knot in one end and then sewed it onto the toadstool top using a couple loops with my needle and thread. Done!