advent insanity

I’ve been very hung-ho with holiday decorating this year.  my goal has been to slowly but surely make a handmade Christmas home.  that way I don’t feel the need to make EVERYTHING in one feel swoop. by making a few things every year I can get closer and closer to the homespun goodness this holiday deserves.  this year I’ve tackled advent-ing with fervor.  this was one of those ideas that grew really organically…drawing inspiration from a few places and then working its way into something that was its very own idea. a kind of a  mod advent hanging:

     {sorry for the sloppy, cloudy picture}

I loved the idea of little mittens.  our house is full of them…scattered everywhere…they never, ever match. so, mismatched mittens litter this advent…each one is its own pocket. I didn’t go in with a plan for these pockets and it turned out they are too small for toys and would only comfortably fit kitkats or candy canes.  neither are my favorite thing to get the kids on as a steady diet all December long.  so, I decided to go with something new and made little slips of paper with an activity on it. that way the boys can take turns pulling out the ‘advent’ but can both participate in the activity.  I had so much fun making these little tags. some of pretty generic and some are specific to things I know we are planning on doing.  lots of the tags involve making things (of course!) and I was aiming for a mix of giving acts for others and fun things to make it a magical month. I also mixed big activities with simple ones that can be easily accomplished on a weekday so it doesn’t become an addition to an overwhelming  ‘to-do’ list….one of them is ‘hug a friend’  or ‘pet the cat’, for example.


the mittens themselves are made of red felt with lime-green accent sewn onto white fleece backing. I used lots of stitches as part of the decorative effect.  the mittens are ‘hung’ on single-fold bias tape and the dates are marked with regular stamps using fabric paint. I kept the number pretty subtle because I like it like that.  a simple ribbon frames the bottom and makes a tube for hanging at the top.


and, oh yes, there is more!

I went a little head over heels for the whole advent things and made a second one as a gift my guy, Kevin, who built this website (he did a good job, no?). he has, prepare yourself (breath), four young girls. so, I made really big pockets on this one.  lord only knows how you manage ‘fairness’ with numbers that big. each pocket has a number on it. I was going for a patchwork quilt effect with this.  the fabrics are from here.


{don’t worry, I didn’t give him nasty old paintbrushes, just used that to illustrate the pocket-ness}

7 Comments on advent insanity

  1. Anne
    November 29, 2011 at 9:20 am (6 years ago)

    Gorgeous (both, but particularly the mittens)!!

    • ahappystitch
      November 29, 2011 at 11:16 am (6 years ago)

      thanks Anne!

  2. Pat
    November 29, 2011 at 9:54 pm (6 years ago)

    I love the advent calendars, but even more love the activities. What a great idea!! Very cute and very connected to the true meaning of Christmas. Love, togetherness, joy, and peace.

    • ahappystitch
      December 6, 2011 at 10:59 pm (6 years ago)

      thanks mom! the best part is the the boys are LOVING IT! they can’t wait to pull out the advent every day.

  3. Michelle
    December 3, 2011 at 9:24 am (6 years ago)

    Really love the way that fabric stamping looks on the gift-ed advent calendar. Very homespun vs. home-made, you know what I mean?

    • ahappystitch
      December 6, 2011 at 10:58 pm (6 years ago)

      thank you! what a sweet detail you noticed. I love homespun…such a great word.


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