Monday, November 29, 2010

A Little bit of Holiday DIY

Well, we made it through another holiday. I hope yours was wonderful and yummy! Ours was very nice. It was great to see family and just relax for a couple of days. Rory and I were a little under the weather so it was helpful to have a few extra hands around to take care of the both of us.

We extended our holiday visit with family an extra day to hold a craft day together. It was a nice break from all of the birthday crafting maddness I have been surrounded by lately. So I will extend the birthday interuption to you and share a little holiday diy project we worked on. I tried taking pictures as we went along but it was nighttime and they just didn't come out. So I will explain the process the best I can. It was very simple and very affordable.

Semi-Homemade Advent Calendar

(please excuse the poor quality of the photos)

What you will need:

-1 1/4 yard of wool felt for the backing
-2 - 1/4 yards of wool felt in two different colors for the pockets
-felt decals to decorate each pocket
-glitter fabric paint (i used two different colors)
-embroidery thread
-1/2 inch thick wooden dowel
-2 yards of fabric cord of your liking
-glue gun
-sewing machine

Please keep in mind that the measurements I provide are rather large, many that I found online have much smaller pockets. It was sized this way so that we can fit gifts big enough for a baby in each pocket. Feel free to adjust measurments as you see fit.

Step 1

Cut the large piece of felt to size, 46 inches long by 28 inches wide (I did not cut the width but simply folded the yardage in half so that it was stronger once gifts were inserted). Sew a 1/4 inch seem around the entire rectangle. Fold the top 3 - 4 inches over to the back and sew to create a sleeve for the wooden dowel to slide through.

Step 2

Cut 24 - 5 x 5 inch squares. 12 in one color and 12 in the other. I chose blue and green cause I don't really like red all that much and snowflakes can be blue right!?

After cutting your squares go ahead and decorate them. I thought about sewing them on first but then i was worried that I would make a mistake while decorating and have to rip it off, so do what you please but I decorated first.

This is the semi-homemade part. We found these felt decorations in the $1 bin at JoAnn Fabrics. We grabbed 4 bags of them (we still have a ton left over) and I glued them on to each pocket. You can use fabric glue for this part or just use the glue gun since you already have that out. I used the glitter fabric paint (also got these in the $1 bin) to write on the numbers and add a little sparkle to each of the felt cutouts.

Step 3

Sew the pockets on to your backing. Don't forget to leave the top of each pocket open! hehe!

Step 4

This step is totally optional. I used embroidery thread to add a lovely stitch along the border of the calendar. I think it looks nice with or without it.

Step 5

Before you add your dowel make sure that it isn't too long. Mine is, I forgot to shorten it while I was at my family's and I don't own a saw. Take your cord and glue it to the dowel. I wrapped it around the dowel twice and then sprialed it up the loose peice of cord for a little prettiness.

Slip the dowel through the sleeve in the calendar and glue the cord to the other end the same way you did the first one.

Step 6

Add all of the presents and surprise a special little person (or a big person, adults can have advent calendars too!!).

I think we spent less than $30 on this project and we have enough supplies leftover to make another one when our family grows again.

Happy crafting!

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