Designer Carolyn Letten’s intricately detailed storage box is a festive winner – we can practically smell the freshly baked gingerbread off the page! With a dusting of snow over the roof and a warm glow coming through the windows, this is the perfect crafty make to get you in the mood for the upcoming season. Stitch yours, then remove the lid and fill it up with sweets or sewing treats as a thoughtful gift for a special someone.
- Fabric: fat quarters, patterned; oddments
- Felt, six assorted colours
- Trim: lace, candy cane piping
- Ribbon: silver, gingham, metallic scraps
- Acid-free glue
- Mount board or thick card
- Iron-on interfacing
- Water erasable pen
Download and print the templates from sewmag.co.uk and cut out. Snip a rectangle, 16.5cm x 27cm, from fabric. Cut three rectangles, 7.5cm x 12.5cm, from mount board. With the fabric right side up and landscape, lay the three card rectangles portrait across the middle, with a 1mm gap in between each and a fabric border of 1.5cm. Carefully remove the middle card and use a water erasable pen to trace around the two outer pieces. Set the card aside.
Turn the fabric 90 degrees to work on the top rectangle first for one of the house sides. Cut silver ribbon, 16cm, and glue so the bottom edge sits on the pen line. Trap a length of candy cane piping under the top edge of the ribbon, then machinesew across the top edge and bottom to secure.
Cut out two window frames and window glass pieces from oddments. Back the light colours with interfacing. Assemble and stick the windows in place, centrally along the top of the candy cane trim and 2cm apart, using the photos as a guide.
Stitch around the frame with contrast thread and the windows with a matching colour. Sew a scallop pattern around the window frames in white, stitching over it twice. Turn the main fabric around so that you can mirror the process on the other rectangle. Iron on the reverse.
To assemble the sides, lay the fabric wrong side up and glue the three card pieces in place with a 1mm gap in between. Make sure the two outer cards line up with the pen marks exactly. Fold the excess border over to the back of the card and secure with glue.
Use the template to cut two house ends from the mount board, then two from the fabric, 1.5cm bigger all around. Lay a template centrally onto the right side of a fabric piece and transfer the shape. Repeat, then set one end aside.
Sew a 12cm length of silver ribbon across the bottom of a fabric house end. Using the templates, and the photos as guides, cut out the tree, trunk, door and heart from coloured felts.
Begin assembling the remaining house end in the same way, but add candy cane trim along the top of the silver ribbon. Sew on one lollipop tree from a 6cm piece of gingham ribbon and one from a 3.5cm piece. Complete with small felt circles and a bright lace flower. Assemble the tree as before, but lay it on its side, checking placement is within the pen lines. Iron on the reverse.
Assemble both ends, sticking the mount board in place on the wrong side of the fabric. Check the edges line up with the pen lines, then fold the excess fabric onto the back of the card and glue.
To assemble the house, fold up a house side and place a house end onto it. Hand-sew together using ladder stitch down the side of the end, across the bottom and back up the other side of the end. Repeat for the other end. Alternatively, use a hot glue gun down the inside joins.
Stick white trim all around the bottom and top edges of the house. To line the house with fabric, use the original templates to cut pieces from felt, 3mm smaller all around. Secure each with glue, and set aside.
For the roof, cut two pieces of mount board, 10.5cm x 14cm. Glue onto the wrong side of a piece of the main fabric, with a gap of 3mm between the long sides. Cut the fabric so it is 1.5cm bigger than the mount board all the way around. Fold the excess fabric over onto the other side of the card and glue.
Cut a piece of the light-coloured roof felt, 15.5cm x 32cm, then use the template to trim the scallop shape at both short ends. Snip out six more scallop-edged strips, two from light and four from dark roof felt. Alternate one light and two dark pieces at each end of the roof, 1.5cm apart. Stitch along all the scalloped edges in light thread.
Cut 1cm wide ribbon, 16cm, to hold the roof sides in position. Use the template to cut the snow from felt. Lay it across the middle of the roof and sew around the edges. Apply glue to the wrong side of the fabriccovered roof board and stick it to the wrong side of the felted roof, sandwiching centrally 1cm of each end of the ribbon at both sides, between the card and felt.