Wednesday, November 27, 2013

DIY 'Family Friendly' Advent Calendar

Last week in the shop I made my 2013 Family Advent Calendar and can I just say I am pretty happy with it!

I didn't have a final image of what it would look like when I started so the creating stage was quite fun.

I did have some definite pre requisites though – I wanted it to be fun and inclusive of the whole family. I wanted it to be activity based with actual things to do and not all about lollies and the ‘getting/receiving’ mentality. And I wanted it to look ‘nice’ but still kid friendly.

So this is what it turned out like:

Would you like to make one too? Well this is how I did it:

This is what I used:
  • 25 Brown paper bags
  • Variety of coloured and white card stock
  • Stampin up Stamp sets:Joyous Celebrations, Memorable Moments, Wishing you, Merry Little Christmas and Sensational Seasons
  • Ink Pads
  • Washi tape
  • String
  • Snail glue or glue dots
  • 25 Wooden pegs (homebrand)
  • My own printable Advent activities. You can print them too, just click here!

How did I make it?

1. Collect everything and set up your creative station.

2. Cut out about 30 white card stock into squares (7cm x 7cm was a good size)

3. Cut out about 50 coloured card stock squares a bit bigger than the white (8cm x 8cm) I chose 3 colours for this.

4. Print out your Advent activities onto white card stock and cut to size. These will need to fit on the coloured card stock squares.

5. Choose 25 Advent activities (I did a few extra’s for you to choose from) and glue each onto a coloured square. Put to the side.

6. Collect your pegs and cover with washi tape. Trim off the edges so they look nice and neat. (I used 3 colours). Put to the side.

7. Fold over the top of each paper bag and decorate with washi tape. (Make sure you leave room to thread the string through later).

WARNING: Messy part!!

8. Get your stamps and ink out and get ready to do some stamping.

9. Collect your white card stock at set it out in front of you. I chose to do about 6 cards at a time.

10. Stamp all of the numbers first, making sure you leave space for another stamp image on the card.

11. Now add your next stamp image to each card. I used the Sensational Seasons stamp set the most because I wanted to keep it fun and childlike. (You can use any Christmassy design you like though).

I factored in extra card stock to allow for mistakes and smudges.

12. Using the remaining coloured card, paste each stamped square onto a coloured square.

You should now have:
  • 25 Stamped Advent date cards bordered with coloured card stock
  • 25 Advent activities bordered with coloured card stock
  • 25 wooden pegs covered with washi tape
  • 25 Paper bags, folded and decorated with wash tape

13. Stick each stamped card onto the front of the paper bag
14. With your calendar at hand, glue the Advent activities on the back of each paper bag. Ensure you chose the desired date for each activity so you don’t get caught putting the Christmas tree up on a Tuesday morning before school.

15. Now thread each bag (in order) with string and display.

Some variations:
  • Hole punch your date and activity cards and attached to your bag with string instead of sticking them.
  • Stick the activities on the back of the date card and hang on the front of the bag.
  • Place the activity card inside each bag with a little treat on some of the days.
  • Hand write your own Advent activities on the back or bottom of each bag.
  • Place your bags into a basket near the tree instead of hanging them.
  • Hang them in the shape of a tree on the wall.
If you would like to purchase any stampin up products or if you would like me to come to you and run a workshop feel free to email me and I can do this for you. (

Personally, I just love Christmas and Advent. It is my most favourite time of the year.

I have a Pinterest Board dedicated just to Advent. Check it out here!

What ways do you celebrate Advent with your family? Do you make your own Calendars or have traditions?

Please share pictures of your Advent creations on my Facebook page or Pinterest Board.

I'd love to see yours.

Have a fabulous day

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