I chose wine red and moss green with ivory and gold - a slightly muted take on the traditional red, white and green Christmas colours. To add a twist to the design I decided to use a few LED lights as well (they may not be traditional but by sticking to white and red I avoided making them too garish).
Step 1: You Will Need...
For the Stocking:
Base fabric (I used green velvet)
Scrap fabrics for decoration (deep red, ivory, bottle green, gold)
Brown felt (for the reindeer)
Strong ribbon or cord (for hanging)
Decorative button or similar
Beads, braid, small brass bell, gold yarn, white merino fleece or white polyester stuffing (for the mistletoe berries)
Needle and thread
Sewing Machine if available
For the Lights:
White sewable LEDs
Red sewable LED
Step 2: Decorating the Stocking...
Cut out your reindeer and sew it onto the foot of the stocking - if you aren't a confident artist, print or trace a suitable reindeer shape, not too complicated, and use a paper template pinned to the felt to get it just how you want it. I left the antlers off and embroidered them separately in gold yarn. One nice effect of using felt over velvet is that, if you use a straight machine stitch around the edges, the pile of the velvet gives the shape a slightly raised, quilted appearance. If you liked you could even pad it further with stuffing to make the reindeer slightly three dimensional.
Work over the decorative bands with gold thread and fancy machine stitching, and add braid to cover the joins between colours.
The LED consists of a small flat board with a ring-shaped terminal on either side, one positive, one negative, and a tiny raised square in the middle - this is the bulb, and although it looks nothing like a normal bulb, it's astonishing how bright a light it can produce! The rest of the kit comprises a battery and battery holder, and some conductive thread, which resembles silky grey sewing thread but will carry an electric current. I should point out that the power involved is so low that you can't feel it when you touch the thread, and it doesn't produce any heat when the bulbs are lit, so it's perfectly safe.
The LED boards are small enough that you could mount them on the front of an item and if the pattern behind them was busy enough they wouldn't show up very much, however, for Rudolph's nose I chose to make a small hole for the bulb to peep through and sew the LED onto the back of the fabric where it would be completely hidden.
So, make a small hole where the reindeer's nose will be, and, on the reverse side, making sure the board is facing the hole, stitch it in place using one strand of the conductive thread around the positive terminal and one around the negative, being sure to wrap the thread firmly through the ring several times to make a good connection. Leave enough length on each thread to reach the battery holder when it is in place, up near the top of the stocking.
I found the simplest way was to connect both threads of the red light to the battery holder, and then make a separate circuit for the two white lights on the mistletoe, making sure the positive and negative threads didn't cross or touch anywhere. Another way would be to connect the positive thread to the battery holder, and the negative to the first mistletoe berry, that berry to the next, and then back to the negative terminal on the battery holder, thus creating one circuit with three lights in a row (ie. connected in series).
For the mistletoe lights I used a slightly different technique - I sewed the LED boards on the front of the stocking, and then covered them with a soft disc of white merino fleece to make a mistletoe berry. Take a shred of fleece or stuffing, roll it between your fingers into a loosely packed ball so the light can shine through clearly, but enough to hide the board, and stitch it in place.
Where there was only a single thickness of fabric I used stitches that would not be visible from the front, but where it was layered I was able to mostly run the thread between the layers both to hide it and protect it, taking care not to let the positive and negative threads touch or overlap anywhere. Before doing the final stitching, insert the battery and touch the threads to the terminals to check that you've got everything laid out correctly and that the circuit will work properly.
Use a strong satin ribbon and sew it firmly in place - remember that it will have to take the weight of a filled stocking! I used a red button to hide the place where the ribbon was sewn on. Normally the ribbon would be stitched into the seam to hide the ends, but I preferred to leave the ends long, with a v cut in the end to prevent fraying, like parcel ribbons.