Two years ago, I spotted this advent calendar and was inspired to create one for our family. Well, it didn't happen that year, or last Christmas, so I was determined to make it this year. Then I saw that Jill was hosting a handmade advent calendar sew along (based on the same Inchmark project) and it gave me the motivation I needed to get started! I also found lots of inspiration in the Homemade by You Flickr group (especially Katie's gorgeous ornament! And oh, her plush nativity!! Next year...).
I decided that as long as I was making one for us, I would make another for our nephews to enjoy. I set out in early November making all the little felt ornament pairs. I used wool felt (instead of the standard poly felt), which was definitely worth the extra expense since I was making something that I want to keep and use for many years. I also ended up sewing a back layer of felt on each ornament, which made them much sturdier and covered up my stitches.
I embroidered the numbers 1-24 on felt squares, then machine-stitched those squares to the white fabric base. I also sewed the tree and 24 buttons to the white fabric.
For the finishing, I cut a patterned fabric backing and sewed a little label to it that says "made with love by mama, Christmas 2010". Then I sewed the two layers back to back with a red binding around the edge.
I finally finished both calendars earlier this week, so we missed the first week of December, but we will enjoy it until Christmas and for many years to come. I hung it in our great room, right at Lachlan's level, so that he can add another ornament to the tree every morning. I'm so glad that I took the time to complete this project (even though I feel quite behind on the rest of my Christmas preparations!).