COUNTING THE DAYS: MAKING AN ADVENT CALENDAR

I think every year for the past 6 years I have told myself that this will be the year I will make an advent calendar. I will not be at the mercy of the cardboard, chocolate, store bought, count down to December 25th. Not that I mind those. In fact, my Opa, without fail provided one every year. I was always drawn to the fact that the advent could provide more than chocolate and candy. You want to know what? This is the year I actually made one. Like all my sewing projects I will give you the disclaimer that I am no seamstress, and sewing is not the craft I feel I exude my highest level of skill. Still I am able to provide a sturdy and robust final product that should stand the test of time. Here is how I went about this advent calendar.

Materials:

  • embroidery needle
  • embroidery thread
  • felt 
  • scissors
  • sewing machine and thread
  • ruler

1. Cutting the felt. I cut 24, 4" x 4" squares of felt of various colors and 24, 3" x 3" squares of felt. Then I made a paired one of the 4" square with the 3" square and stacked them all up based on the color relationships. 

2. One by one hand embroidered numbers onto the the 3" square.

felt advent squares

When you have reached this point, congratulate yourself! It always takes longer than you think it will take.

sewn felt days of advent

3. Then sew the top 3" square on top of the 4" square. I wanted these to be a double pocket. Sew the small pocket on the front with the top open, and then the 4" square being a pocket when sewn to the large felt backdrop.

felt advent to sew

4. Begin placing them on your backdrop of felt. I wanted mine to be able to fit on a door. The dimensions I used was 18"W by 68"H. For the felt I had it is a 3 panel piece to make these dimensions. If you find yourself in this situation too, sew your panels together and have the final size before you place your squares on the backdrop. Leave plenty of room on the top and the bottom in case you find yourself needing that felt to create a hanging system. You can always trim later. Pin the squares where you intend on sewing them. Once everything is pinned and you are ready to hang out with your sewing machine, you can sew the 4" square to the backdrop of felt again leaving an opening on top. This is your second pocket.

December Advent Calendar

5. Once you have done that, trim your extra long threads and test it out for size. For this year we opened an internal door, hung the advent calendar over it, then shut the door. The felt has enough of a texture with the top of the door that it happily stays in place even when the door is opening and closing as needed. This is on a closet door, so we don't need to worry about the flap of blue that is showing on the other side. 

I have intentions of adding some embroidery to it every year. I guess time will tell.

I was able to finish this right before the end of November, and so far this calendar has brought good cheer!