DIY Advent Calendar Keepsake (under $20)


Ok we all have awesome memories of those cardboard choc advent calendars right? Choosing the coolest one of whatever cartoon character you are most interested in, and that cheap, but oh so familiar good feeling Christmas choc taste! I bought these for my kids, but I thought that maybe I could do something a little more fun… so I searched for Advent calendars that were larger, and boxes that I could put other little treats in that weren’t always choc leading up to Christmas Day. I couldn’t find any that were big enough to fit more than a sticker or a little choc, so I decided I would make my own, in my own style (big, bright, fun and quirky – if you know me by now I’m not into traditional Christmas colours).

I made this last year, really cutting it close to Dec 1, so I really didn’t have time to take tutorial pics or write about it. This year I was a little slow on getting it down from storage. But honestly it is super easy, and uses extremely basic sewing skills, and if you are a terrible terrible sewer, you could do it all with a good hot glue gun, as it is just felt!

So I am going to give you the measurements, and where I bought everything, and ideas on what to put in it.

Lil M remembered it as was sooooooo excited when she saw me pull it out again yesterday!

Ok so I’m going very basic about it all.


I bought everything from Spotlight – I bought the felt off the roll (its like $8- 9 a meter) and I doubled it over to make the back stronger to hold up. Lying flat it measures at 85cm in height and 49cm in width. So make sure you get at least 170cm in felt length ways so you can double it over!

The felt squares, numbers and icons, I used off cuts I already had, plus some coloured squares I also bought from spotlight, including the black and white patterned ones, you can buy them by the square or in a pack of all the patterns.You will need a long piece of black felt for across the top which is larger than a square, you will need it to be at least 49cm across. It would be best to buy your black felt for the top and numbers from the roll, 8-10cm in width (for the top bit) so get about 30cm-40cm for the numbers too (remember it will depend on the width of your felt from the roll, how much you will get for the numbers, keep that in mind) if you are not great at hand cutting numbers I would suggest buying transfers to iron on – again you can find these at spotlight!

The twine is cotton rope from the finishings section, get one thick enough to hold up on a hook, get 1 meter to be safe, the dowel I also bought from spotlight, I cut mine to 60cm.


Each pocket is 10cm x 10cm, I did 4 across, and 6 down. As you can see its not exact, its very rough haha.

I cut the black top first, it needs to be 49cm across and 8cm in length and fold it over the top of your white felt (so it is 4cm on front & back), and sew the edges so that you create like a pocket for you to slide the dowel in later. from the edge of that black I started the squares about 6cm down, about 4cm in from the sides and 2.5cm in between each pocket. But as it is felt lie it all out first and make sure it all sits even, then pin it all and sew (or hot glue gun it) Just sew the edges and bottom.

Hand cut the numbers and any icons you would like (I went for an Aussie summer Christmas theme), and hot glue these down  (as you can see I need to just do a few touch ups on ours before it goes up again with the hot glue gun hahaha)

Once it is all done, then slide your dowel in the top and attached the rope, I attached some homemade pom poms to the edges to decorate.

What you put in yours is up to you! Last year I had sticker and choc, and every 5 days or so there was something a little big bigger… (such as a pack of glow in the dark stickers, some Lyra coloured pencils, wind up Christmas toys). This year I have choices, tattoos, pencil erasers, hot wheels cars, hair clips. You could also add little lego figures, shopkins, stickers, or activities for them to do! Just have fun with it!!!!






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