Saturday, 13 November 2010

Advent Calender Tutorial

Introducing the Titchables advent calender tutorial! I've been working really hard on this for the past month - designing, making and writing it up and I'm so excited to share it with you. So without any further delay, here it is!

- 2 x White Felt Sheets (9"x9")
- 6 x Coloured Felt Sheets (9"x9") - I used Red, Leaf, Turquoise, Electric Blue, Pistachio and Hot Pink from my range.
- Interfacing
- Ribbon
- Ruler
- Scissors
- 6 x Coloured Embroidery Threads (I used similar colours to the felt)
- Craft Glue
- Sewing Needle
- Embroidery Pins

Step One
- Cut 24 2inch squares. 4 per colour. You then want to arrange your squares - 4 across, 3 down. This is just so you can sort out what colours you want your numbers.

Step Two
- Cut out your numbers! I did the colours at random, but tried to give as much contrast as possible. I cut all the numbers freehand, but if you don't feel confident to do that here's a tip: Go into any word processing program, pick a nice thick font and put the font size up to 72 (you may need to adjust this depending on the font). Type out numbers 0-9, print and there you have your number pattern!

Step Three
- Grab your craft glue and stick all your numbers on to the squares. This is a bit of a cheating way of doing it, so if you do want to sew them on, go for it!

Step Four
- Now you want to arrange your squares properly on your white felt. There was nothing technical to this, just get them as level as possible and centred. When your happy with your positions, get your embroidery pins and pin them to the white felt sheets.

Step Five
- Time to sew. I used a back stitch, which is a bit time consuming so make sure you get yourself comfy with a cup of tea (or whatever your favourite drink is!). And a bit silly pointing this out, but remember to leave to top edge. Whichever way you sew your squares on, make sure it's a nice secure stitch so nothing can fall through.

Step Six
- Now's the time to attach your two big felt sheets! You'll need to put your lower white sheet just below the bottom coloured squares on your top white sheet. Pin in place. I used a sewing machine to attach, but if you don't have one, hand sewing will work just as well!

Step Seven
- Get your interfacing and place your calender on top. Cut around the edge, but leave about an inch extra around all sides. Turn your calender over so the back is on top, place the interfacing over the top (the rougher edge should be facing down) and iron over well until firmly attached to the felt. You then need to cut around the edge so it's nice and neat. (The interfacing is for giving the calender a bit more strength and shape).

Step Eight
- You're now going to attach the ribbon so you can hang your calender up! Cut 2 bits about 6" long. Important bit! When attaching the ribbon, make sure both sides are level. I attached the ribbon by putting in a running stitch, but as long as you make it secure any way is fine. Now you just need something to hold the whole thing up! I used a long wooden dowel, but you could use anything you have to hand.

And your done! All you need to do now is put something lovely in your pockets. Sadly the chocolate I bought is a smidge too big so I'm going to have to go out and get something else (which is just terrible - extra chocolate, yuck!!...) but you can put whatever you fancy in there - messages, sewing bits, activity cards (great for the kids!) - the possibilities are endless!

I really hope you enjoyed this tutorial and if you do give it a go, I would love to see the results! I have set up a flickr group for you to share your final pieces, or you can even share your in progress shots! If you need any help or any encouragement feel free to post something in the discussion section!


Erika Price said...

Thank you for this fun tutorial! I'm no needlewoman, but I can't wait to have a go at this! Mine will definitely be filled with chocolate :)

Dotty said...

This is lovely and so clearly presented. I'd definitely fill it with chocolate too!