Just because us adults are now grown up, why should we miss out on all the fun? Us adults enjoy the count down to the big day too. And age is just a number, right? I am sure I am not alone in saying we are all big kid’s at heart.
Making the countdown fun and personal…
Christmas can be expensive enough so why not help keep the cost down where we can. Advent calendars are a brilliant way to help us count down to the big day, and the lead up to the big day is half the fun right? there is no reason we can’t go and purchase another advent calendar from the shops, but this year I thought why have the same store-bought ones each year?
This year I got my craft on…
This year I have decided to make us a family advent calendar and make it personal to my family. A calendar we can re-use for many years to come. One that will help us make the Christmas season even more special. Advent calendars are becoming even more themed like, with so many choices ranging from, alcohol, beauty, toys, chocolate and so on. Another reason to make a family one, why be stuck with just the one theme?
Adding a little fun into the advent calendar…
The advent calendar I have made will involve us all as a family taking part, by adding a little thought and love into it. You can buy a pre-made empty advent calendar in a choice of many different designs for those not feeling very creative, but I thought I would have a go at making my own. So here goes……
Secret Santa advent…
There are six of us living in our house, our advent calendar will have 25 pockets to it. 24 pockets shared between the 6 of us will mean we will all get 4 pockets each. Pocket 25 will be shared between all of us. In pocket 25 we will all add a family game or something we could all do together over the festive period, so the fun lives on beyond the big countdown. We will all write down that activity on paper and add it to pocket 25.
The aim of the calendar…
We all wrote our own names and one of our chosen advent numbers/pockets on a piece of paper four times (one for each of our pockets) and put our four pieces of paper into a dish. We then all took four different pieces of paper containing a persons name and number/pocket which we wasn’t allowed to inform others of who we had. If we pulled our own name out we had to put it back to change it for someone else’s name. We then had until the end of November to purchase an advent gift for that persons number/pocket on the advent calendar. As we work our way through December we can all excitedly see what our secret Santa has placed in our advent pockets on those days. I thought this would be a much more fun way to enjoy the big countdown to the big day.
What I used:
- A mixture of different Christmas fabric. To use for the pockets and bunting.
- Calico cotton fabric to use as the backing.
- Fusible Iron On Interfacing fabric. To use in the middle.
- Light Hessian fabric. To use as the front.
- Mixture of Christmas themed ribbons. For decoration and the bunting.
- Mixture of mixed designs 3D flat back Cabochons. For decoration.
- Self adhesive felt. Used for the numbers.
- Lace fabric. To use for decoration.
- Fabric glue.
- Flower head pins. Used to support the fabric when cutting and sewing.
- Fabric Scissors.
- Tape measure.
- Sewing machine.
- Glitter stars for decoration.
How I made the advent calendar:
- The first thing I did was decide on the location I would like to hang the calendar.
- I then went on to measure the space I had and then worked out my measurements.
- Pockets were then made in a mixture of sizes. I done this by using a variety of different Christmas fabrics. Cutting them all to a variety of different sizes, making sure not to make them to big and to stay within my measurements. The pockets were then pinned and sewn. Leaving the top section open, giving us somewhere to place our advent gifts.
- The 25 pockets were then decorated, using ribbon, lace, cabochons and off cuts of fabrics. All being glued with the fabric glue.
- All 3 of the calendar fabrics were then measured and marked for cutting. The front piece of fabric will be 1″ bigger than the middle piece of fabric. The middle piece of fabric will then be 1″ to what is going to be the backing fabric. This then allows for the edging fold/overlapping.
- Then came the nerve wracking bit…It was then time to cut the fabrics to size. This part always makes me nervous.
- The fabrics were then ironed.
- The fabrics were folded by laying what is to be the front fabric down first, then what is the middle piece on top of the front piece. The fabric that will be the back was then laid on top.
- All 3 fabrics were then pinned and sewn together.
- The calendar was then decorated with lace, the pockets and ribbon.
Bunting to finish…
The bunting was then made and added to the calendar. I made this by re-measuring the width of the calendar and then cutting some fabric to size and the triangle shape I wanted. I then cut some ribbon to size, allowing extra to tuck round the back to finish. I used fabric glue to glue it all in place. Glitter stars were then added with glue to the calendar to finish. Followed by the pockets being filled with secret Santa gifts. We were then ready for the countdown to begin!
This was my first ever handmade project of this size. I have always wanted to make things myself but have never really had the time to do so. Now I am no longer working due to ill health I am now able to put the time and effort into different projects. Since finishing this advent calendar I have made both of our dogs a Christmas stocking each and I am currently working on an interior project with Ian. All of which I will be sharing with you later this week.
Are you doing anything different this year for Christmas?