That Winter Afternoon . . .

comments: 136

. . . when I left the library, it was already snowing.

. . . . The sky was the color of a pewter cup.

. . . . . I buttoned my coat all the way up.

. . . . . . I warmed my hands in my woolen mittens.

. . . . . . . I walked through the city until the city faded away behind me.

I could've sworn that my old friend P.B. was watching me from behind the trees. . . .


Introducing my 2010 handmade felt ornament-making kit: SNOW DAY.


It includes a Red Wool Coat, to keep you warm and dry . . . 


A traditional Norwegian Selbu mitten, to keep your hands toasty . . . 


And a Polar Bear, far from the Arctic Circle, peeking out from behind the trees. 

Each Snow Day Felt Holiday Ornament Craft Kit contains materials to make one of each of the three ornaments, including:

6 pieces of wool blend felt in assorted colors
5 skeins coordinating DMC cotton embroidery floss
1/2 yd imported French gingham ribbon (for hangers)
1/4 yd imported French eyelet lace (for hanger)
15 yd hand-dyed wool lace-weight yarn (for neckwarmer)
Beads, buttons, and sequins
Waste canvas
Stitching instructions
Pattern templates
Cross-stitch charts
Illustrated embroidery tutorial

You will need to have your own:

Wool batting or Polyester Fiber-fill
Sharp embroidery needle
Dressmaker's chalk pencil or fabric marker
Dressmaker's chalk carbon paper
Iron-on transfer pencil
Sharp fabric scissors and paper scissors
Size US1 (2.25mm) knitting needles
A knowledge of basic knitting (knitting and purling), or someone willing to teach you (or someone willing to knit a weensy polar-bear-sized moss-stitch neckwarmer for you)
DVD player to watch the first season of White Collar without commercials

We are also going to put together a limited edition re-release of 2009's handmade felt ornament-making kit, WALK IN THE WOODS:


It includes the Cozy Cottage, with the wood fires burning:


The Snowy Tree, sparkling with ice crystals:


And my favorite, the Little Deer, who watches shyly from the trees:


And for those of you who missed 2008's kit, you are in luck! We will ALSO be offering a limited edition re-release of ICE-SKATING AFTERNOON, as well!


There's the Hot Cocoa Cup, to warm you up:


The Ice Skate, with pom-pon for good measure:


And the Gingerbread Girl, the sweetest of all:


I'm sorry, but are you as psyched as I am right now??? That new kit is stinkin' cute, no? [Curtsies proudly.]

Please click on the links for each of the kits above to take to you the web shop pages, which list what's included in each and what you will need to have. All ornament kits cost $25 each. I put a Paypal shopping cart feature on the web shop pages so that you can add more than one to the cart. (I've never done that before but I think it will work — let me know if you have problems.) I have one major request: Please [begging begging], please update your shipping address correctly in your Paypal preferences so that there is no confusion when we go to ship. We have a bit of a complicated system for making sure that everyone gets what they ordered on time, and post-ordering emails requesting address changes really mess with that, so if you can get it all straight before or while placing your order, I would be very, very grateful.

My awesome dynamic duo — once again I couldn't do it without these two. I'll see if I can get Andy to write a post detailing his work process like last year — I think he was seriously hopped up on M&Ms — that man can inhale a bag of M&Ms faster than anyone on earth. We are planning to ship everything by late-October. That will give you plenty of time to finish them for the holidays. I do ship overseas — just click on the "Add to Cart" button and enter your country as the destination as you go through the process to see how much the postage is before completing the order.

About the skill level needed to complete these: In previous years I said that, while I don't think of these kits necessarily as a children's or a beginner's project, if you have some experience working some basic stitches, these ornaments take more time and patience than skill. I will include directions on transferring the designs to the felt, and basic diagrams for completing the types of classic embroidery stitches you will need to know — backstitch, lazy-daisy stitch, satin stitch, French knot, and blanket stitch — but once you are comfortable working those stitches, if you just take your time and settle in, you will be fine.

The Snow Day kit is a little different, in that it will call upon some new skills: basic knitting, to complete the Polar Bear's neckwarmer (in moss stitch, which is k1 p1, repeated — very simple); and cross-stitch from a chart using waste canvas (which is included in the kit). This not difficult: Essentially, you will baste the waste canvas to the felt, stitch over it, then moisten the waste canvas and remove it's fibers, leaving the cross-stitches behind. This is one of my very favorite things to do (if you've gotten yourself a copy of Embroidery Companion then you'll be familiar with how much I love waste canvas) and will open a world of cross-stitching possibilities (oh joy!) for you if you've never done it before.

I think that's it. If you are interested in ordering these, the best advice I can give you is do not wait to place your order. These have sold out every year long before Christmas, and once they are gone, they are absolutely gone until next year (and even then, there are no guarantees that we will continue to do them, of course). Putting these kits together is, quite frankly, a massive operation that Andy and I do together and entirely ourselves — from cutting the felt, to assembling packs of embroidery floss, to winding yarn, to scooping beads and sequins. This activity completely takes over our household for the six weeks it takes to assemble and ship these (from now until the end of October). But we absolutely LOVE this whole process (while it lasts, and then we both fall over with exhaustion) and we love these kits, so I appreciate every single one of you who say you love them, too. Any questions, let me know, and thank you again for your yearly enthusiasm for these! I really appreciate that so much. Thank you!

*Update: Yes, I will be offering all three patterns as downloadable PDFs — they will be available sometime in late September, but I will let you know exactly when they are ready. THANK YOU everyone! You guys are seriously rad!!!


Katie Christian says: September 15, 2010 at 11:53 AM

YES!!! New kits AND last year's kit! I've been kicking myself for not ordering last year's Walk in the Woods! HUZZAH!!

I just ordered my kit! I'm ready for some hot chocolate drinking, cold morning walks with my puppers, and ornament crafting! This is becoming an annual tradition for me! Yay!

Susie Sears Taylor says: September 15, 2010 at 12:01 PM

Christmas is closer than we think! This gets the juices flowing.

Your ornaments are all so darling, Alicia. Such a joy to look at. Your talents and creativity never cease to amaze me. LOVE the polar bear's neckwarmer. :)

That red coat is my favorite. SO sweet! Especially with the attached mittens. The whole collection is just darling!

Troy Louise says: September 15, 2010 at 12:07 PM

Oh wow! These are adorable & thanks for rereleasing the old kits. I missed the first one & may have to have that too! I really appreciate all of the hard work you & Andy put in to these - they are superb.

the ornaments keep getting better and better every year! thank you for making the previous years kits available.
can't wait to get them!! :)

I cannot get over how amazing that red coat is. I want.. no I need one in full grown up size. It's stunning!

Cynthia Holzhauer says: September 15, 2010 at 12:10 PM

These are just adorable! Do you think you'll offer the patterns separately for those of us who have embarassingly massive stashes of craft goodies overwhelming our homes and don't really need the materials?

Love these! And love the new banner! Just gorgeous!

Oh oh oh!!! If only I had better sewing and embroidery skills! Maybe I'll get this, just in case I feel like tackling something with a sewing needle and not a knitting needle.

The red coat reminds the book, 'A New Coat for Anna'. Which is my favorite not only because my first name is Anna, but I love the illustrations of the entire process of gathering and dyeing the wool, all the way up to the finished coat. Yum.

Okay, I just convinced myself. I NEED THIS KIT!

Alicia, these are just lovely. I think I would go mad if I had to put together the kits!! (I must say everything I've ordered from you has been such a treat-- so nicely presented and packaged), Thank goodness you have such great helpers. Looking forward to a guest blog by Andy!!

Oh! I think these might be my favorites!! I absolutely adore your kits and I cannot wait to begin working on these--I don't know what I would do if you got tired of putting these together every year!

Oh, I get it... P.B. is Polar Bear. Alicia, you crack me up! I love how you've painted a word picture to go with each set...

I LOVE the coat!

Such an adorable kit! I just ordered one, and it makes the coming cold weather so much more inviting. I love, love, love the red coat, and the mittens are the perfect chance for me to try cross-stitch, which I have been wanting to do for eons. Thank you, Alicia!

LOVE! Any chance of releasing just the patterns on their own instead of as kits?? :-)

These are adorable. I LOVE the mitten. Can't wait to break out the Christmas music and drink a chai latte!

These are lovely Alicia. Hopefully I can get my hands on a set or two!
Me: "Umm... Cutie, do you think I could get these super adorable Christmas ornament kits to make?" (batting eyes and looking really cute!)

Well these are just gorgeous! Your new studio has not disappointed! These will go perfectly with this year's handmade Christmas.

Didn't see the finished sizes of these mentioned anywhere. Is there an approximate inch height?

Whoohoo!! I've been absent from your wonderful blog for about a month - I spent the last two nights catching up! And just in time to get my hands on the new ornament kits. YAY!! I already placed my order and I can't wait to get my kit!

Oh, and I also wanted to say "Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!" for sharing your new studio on your blog. I'm in the midst of revamping my own crafting space and found the perfect inspiration here once again.
Thanks so much Alicia!

I'm so glad you are doing these this year! I wanted to order so bad last year but didn't have the extra cash, so I'm hoping I can get a set this year. These are so special, real treasures that I would want to pass down to my daughter and then her kids later on, etc. Thank you so much for all your hard work -- the rest of us certainly appreciate it!!

These are just the most gorgeous things I think I've ever seen! Each one got a "Wow" as I scrolled down!

Yay! i have bee so excited to see this year's kit -it's a beauty!!
i CANNOT wait to get started making these -will you be offering the pdf pattern for sale like last time?
pretty please?? xxx

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at