Christmas is coming! Find out how to make a DIY fabric advent calendar to count down to the big day!
1. Advent calendar – 1 – 2 yards in a light color fabric
2. Pouches – Scrap fabric or fat quarters in mixture of colors
3. VELCRO® Brand Stick On Tape
4. Fusible web – small piece to appliqué star
5. Rotary cutter, cutting mat and ruler
6. Sewing machine and sewing materials
7. Iron and ironing board
8. Dowel, hooks and string
9. X-Acto knife and cutting mat
10. Paper and pen
11. Freezer paper, fabric ink, cardboard and sponges
Let’s get started:
Step 1: Sew the advent calendar backing – Cut 2 large rectangles measuring 38″L x 28″W. Place right sides together and sew all 4 sides together. Leave an opening along the bottom edge approximately 4″ – 5″. Press seams. Trim each corner. Pull right side out through the opening, wiggle corners into place. Turn under bottom opening edge, press and pin closed. Create the dowel holder at the top edge – Turn and fold the top edge under approximately 2″. Insert dowel inside to make sure it slides in ok. From one side to the other, trace a straight line with a marking pen, pin. Place into sewing machine and stitch following the line. Topstitch around the outside edge.
Step 2: Cut 100 squares measuring 4″ x 4″. Cut squares in a variety of colors for a fun look – mix & match front, back and lining pieces.
Step 3: Print numbers 1-25. Font size is approximately 1-1/4″. Place freezer paper onto work surface, shiny side down. Trace the numbers onto freezer paper. Make sure to leave room between numbers. Cut out all numbers with the X-Acto knife. Cut around each number, make sure to leave enough room on the sides [extra room for sponge and fabric ink]. Iron numbers 1-25 on each little square. Note – Remember the seam allowances when finding number placement.
Step 4: Squeeze a small amount of fabric ink into a small dish. Place fabric square onto the piece of cardboard. Use sponge and dip into fabric ink. Gently dab onto the open areas of the freezer paper. Do not goop the fabric ink or it will run. Wait a few seconds until just slightly tacky. Pull off freezer paper. Repeat for all numbers.
Step 5: Sew the squares – Place 2 squares right sides together and place 2 lining squares right sides together. Pin if needed. Place into your sewing machine and stitch 3 sides together with a 1/4″ seam allowance. Press. Sew all squares together and make 50 little pouches. Trim bottom corners. Press.
Step 6: Turn one pouch right facing side out and leave the other pouch right side facing in. Place one pouch inside the other. Wiggle into place. Place back into your sewing machine and stitch each pouch together around the top edge. Leave a small opening to pull right side out. Press.
Step 7: Pull one pouch right side out through the small opening. Wiggle everything into place. Press with an iron. Fold under seam allowance for the opening. Place into sewing machine and topstitch around the top edge. Backstitch.
Step 8: Create the star appliqué – Iron red fabric onto fusible web. Draw star on back of fusible web, cut out. Peel back of fusible web from the star. Find center of the advent calendar and press down. Stitch around the star.
Step 9: Create the tree design on the advent calendar – Cut the VELCRO® Brand Sticky Back for Fabrics Tape into small square pieces. Peel the backing from each square and stick 4 hook pieces on one pouch. Repeat for each pouch. Lay the 25 pouches on the advent calendar in a tree design. Peel the backing from the alternating/ loop pieces and press in place under each pouch.