Saturday, November 26, 2011

DIY holiday project :: advent activity calendar

Several weeks ago I was inspired by this lovely advent project on Pinterest:

And it became the visual springboard for my own:

full advent

Begin with two 12x12 cardboard inserts from scrapbooking paper packs as your base. And pick up an 8x8 pad of miscellaneous Christmas papers from a local craft store to use for the pockets.

Create 24 pockets using the holiday paper. Cut the paper into 2-3/4x3-3/4-inch rectangles. Cut an additional 24 rectangles in the same size out of white paper as well, to use as backing for your individual pockets.


Arrange the Christmas paper rectangles on your 12x12 boards. Decorate and number them. I used a Cricket to cut out numbers in varying sizes and colors but you could also use stickers or type them up on your computer as well.

close number

Assemble the pockets using adhesive, brads, staples, and/or stitching around the edges - using Christmas paper for the front and white for the back. Use your favorite scrapbooking adhesive to mount your pockets to the 12x12 boards.

For the final touches, connect the two 12x12 boards together using coordinating ribbon strips and add a ribbon hanger to the top.


Then create 24 inserts for your pockets by cutting down manilla folders to a size that is slightly smaller than the pockets. Use a corner rounder on the edges to help the inserts slide more easily into the pocket.


Use a pen in a coordinating color to write assorted activities on the inserts. Some ideas might include:

1. Visiting the 39th Annual Folkways of the Holidays. Click HERE for details. (It is especially beautiful in the evening.)
2. Christmas in the Village at Dakota City. Click HERE for details.
3. Breakfast with Santa or A Day in the Life of an Elf at Macy's. Click HERE for more information.
4. Watch a holiday movie and eat popcorn.
5. Fill a holiday stocking with treats and deliver it to someone you don't know.
6. Write a Christmas letter far off loved ones.
7. Make hot chocolate and stir with candy canes.
8. Attend The Story at a location near you. Click HERE for tour dates and locations.
9. Make a donation to a local food shelf.
10. Bake treats and deliver them to a neighbor.

Hang your advent activity calendar in a spot that is easily accessible.


advent door

The activities can be changed from year-to-year to suit your family's needs and can include already established family traditions. If you have any questions about the process, let me know! (Too, I'd love to hear your holiday activity ideas as well; to share, just add them as a comment to this post.)

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Heather said...

Thanks for the step by step instructions. I tried to find them on pinterest when you posted earlier, but couldn't find where or how to get at them!! LOVE your end result and will check back for other activity ideas. How did you fasten the ribbon to the boards to connect them?? Glue?
Have a good day!

Tina Vega said...

I used photo tape from Creative Memories which is really sticky double-sided tape. The trickiest part was the top ribbon... with the weight of both boards hanging on it has failed me twice. I added packing tape to the back and it appears to be holding. A hot glue gun might work as well.

Heather said...

Thanks Tina!