This is a cool way to create a knit stocking. This can also be used to make a sweater or an ugly sweater if you ever needed to. This is a simple pattern effect, it takes a bit of time to select each shape and fill it with a color but the end effect is quite festive.
Start with a red rectangle.
Duplicate the shape and rotate it so the left edges line up at the same point.
Use the Direct Selection Tool to select the two lower corners of the rotated shape and pull the Corner Widgets in to round the end.
Draw a line over the intersecting point of the shapes. Select both shapes and the line and use the Divide Mode in the Pathfinder Panel
Select the shapes and use the Shape Builder Tool to merge the lower shapes together.
The use the Shape Builder Tool to merge the upper shapes together. Ungroup the lower shape and the upper shapes so they can be selected individually.
To create the knit effect draw a line and add a heavy stroke weight.
Use the Width Profile from the drop down menu to create a line that tapers at the top and bottom.
Rotate the shape 30 degrees.
Duplicate the shape and rotate it 30 degrees in the opposite direction,
Select both shapes and choose Object > Expand Appearance. Then use the Pathfinder Unite mode to make them one shape.
Duplicate the shape to the side using Option/Alt and drag the shape. Once the shape is duplicated, use COMMAND + D to continue to duplicate the shape many times (40-50 times).
Select the row of duplicated shapes and use Option/Alt and drag the row down to duplicate the row. Use COMMAND +D to duplicate the rows several times.
Select the upper part of the stocking and click on the Draw Inside Mode at the bottom of the tool bar. Copy a section of the knit pattern.
Paste it into the shape and click on the Draw Normal mode.
Select the lower part of the stocking and click on the Draw Inside Mode at the bottom of the tool bar. Paste in the knit pattern and rotate it at the same angle as the lower section.
To edit each shape in the knit pattern, double-click on the upper shape to enter into Isolation Mode. A gray bar will appear at the top of the open document. In the Layers panel, the top layer will show Isolation Mode. Click on the triangle (the twirly) to the left of the layer to open the layer up. Lock the Clipping Path layer to make it easier to select each knit object without selecting the shape they are clipped in.
Select the knits shapes and change the fill color to create a pattern. Use different colors and select different pieces to create any pattern look.
This is not a quick process. Select each knit a shape, hold SHIFT to select more knit shapes. Create any pattern you want.
Repeat the last few steps for the lower section.
Add a top rounded rectangle to the stocking. Repeat the Draw Inside process and paste the knit pattern inside. Add a colored rectangle to the lower section below the cap.
Set the opacity to 60% and the blend mode to Multiply to make it look like a drop shadow below the cap.
Duplicate the circle halfway over the first circle. Select both circles.
Use the Pathfinder Intersect mode to leave the overlapping section.
Choose Object > Path > Add Anchor Points. This will add points to the shape halfway between the existing points.
Choose Effect > Transform > Pucker & Bloat. Set the slider toward Pucker.
This will get the lines to pull in from each point. Choose Object > Expand Appearance.
Fill the shape with a color, remove the stroke.
Choose Object > Path > Offset Path and set the offset smaller than the original.
Fill the new shape with a lighter color.
Add a line to the center, hot dog the line ends and make it a lighter color.
Use the Direct Selection Tool to select the shape and pull in the corner widgets slightly to round the ends.
This is the results. Select the shapes and group them together.
Duplicate and rotate the leaves into a set.
Duplicate the first set so they fit together.
Draw a rectangle over the shapes so the rectangle creates a section that will repeat. Make sure the rectangle create a perfect "snap shot" of the section, starting and stopping in the same location so the final brush fit together seamlessly. Set the rectangle to no fill and stroke, send it to the back.
Open the Brushes panel from the Window Menu. Drag the leaves and the rectangle into the Brushes panel. It will ask for the type of Brush to create. Choose Pattern Brush.
Name the brush and click OK.
Create a circle. Apply the Holly to the stroke of the shape. The leaves may be larger than you want.
Double click on the Holly Brush in the Brushes panel, set the Scale to be a smaller value. Or choose Options of Selected Object… from the Brush dropdown menu and set the brush smaller.
This is the result of the smaller applied brush.
Copy the wreath and choose Edit > Paste in Place. Or choose Options of Selected Object… from the Brush dropdown menu and set the brush smaller. Rotate the pasted circle a it to make the wreath look more full.
Create 3 circles for the berries. Add a fill and a stroke. Select the berries and drag them into the Brushes Panel.
Choose Scatter brush from the New Brush dialog box that pops up.
Use the Brush Tool, select the berries from the brush panel and click on the wreath to add them.
Create this chain and sprocket using Brushes. Yes, brushes. This is a lot easier than it looks. The chain links and the sprocket teeth are created and made into a pattern brush. Create the shape, apply the brush and you have a sprocket and chain.
Start a link of the chain with a circle.
Duplicate the circle. Leave less than one circles space between the two.
Add a rectangle between the two circles. Make the height of the rectangle 2/3 of the height of the circles.
Select all three shapes and use the Pathfinder Unite mode to create on shape.
Use the Direct Selection Tool to select the inner 4 corners and pull the corner widgets out from the center.
This will create a smooth inner curves.
Remove the stroke and add a solid fill.
Select the link and choose Object > Path > Offset Path and set the offset to 10 pt to make a bigger shape.
Select the new shape and add a heavy stroke and no fill.
Add circles to the ends of the links to create a chain link.
Duplicate the outer shape.
Use the Direct Selection Tool to select and remove the ends of the shape, leaving just the lines.
Move the lines to the end of the link, so the lines end up with the curves of the link. Duplicate the link and move it to the left to create a link set.
Create a rectangle starting at the exact centers of each link.
Set the stroke to none and send the rectangle to the back of the links. This rectangle will provide the area that the brush will duplicate. Make sure the rectangle is behind the links.
Open the Brushes panel under Window > Brushes. Select the links and rectangle. Click on the Brushes dropdown menu and choose New Brush… Choose Pattern Brush. Name it Chain and click OK.
To create the sprocket brush. create two circles.
Use the Direct Selection Tool to select and remove 3./4 of each circle, leaving just the the curved lines shown.
Select both lines and choose Object > Path >Join to join the tips.
Select the shape, choose New Brush from the brush dropdown menu. Choose Pattern Brush, name it Sprocket and click OK.
To apply a brush, draw a circle and click on the Sprocket in the Brush Panel.
Create two circles for the chain to run over.
To edit the size of the brush (and not effect other places the brush is applied) click on the Brush dropdown menu and choose Options of Selected Object…
The options allow for control of the size of the brush on the select object. Slide the Scale slider to make the brush larger or smaller.
Duplicate the two Sprocket circles. Set the brush to Basic in the Brush panel to remove the Sprocket.
With both circles selected choose Object > Blend Options. Set the Spacing to Specified steps and the number to 125.
Choose Object >Blend > Make to create the Blend.
Choose Object >Blend > Expand.
Click in the Unite mode in the Pathfinder panel to create one shape.
With the shape, add the link brush to the outline.
Adjust the size of the chains on the path by using the Options of Selected Object… and scale the size of the chain.
Move the chain over the sprockets. Add inner circles inside the sprockets.
Select a sprocket and choose Object > Expand Appearance. Choose Object > Join to make all the segments on shape.
Select the sprocket shape and the inner shape. Fill them with gray. Choose Object > Compound Path > Make. This will make the gear one shape and knock out the middle section.
Repeat the last step with the smaller gear to create a knock out sprocket.
Create a circle on the big sprocket.
Select the inner circle and choose the Rotate tool. Move the Rotate tool to the center of the Sprocket, hold Option/Alt and click to open the Rotate dialog box.
Type 360 / how many circles in the sprocket. Click on the COPY button.
Use Command + D to repeat the rotate/copy of the circle around the sprocket.
Nice chain and sprocket. And some fun with brushes as well.