Tag Archives: gifts

A homemade fabric pocket advent calendar

17 Nov

I always liked the idea of having an advent calendar that wasn’t a cardboard one, or a chocolate one (much as I like chocolate advent calendars), but one with pockets or drawers that you can fill yourself, and would perhaps become a family heirloom.

So last year I decided to make one of these advent calendars, and fill it for Marcus. I had a look around online for inspiration, and decided on a simple design with rows of pockets.

IMG_3753

This was shortly after I’d received the batch of fabric I got from freecycle, and I managed to make the entire thing out of the freecycle fabric, other than a couple of pieces of felt that I bought to make some red and green pockets, and some Merry Christmas ribbon to go along the top and bottom. Included in my freecycle stash was a small strip of squares that spelled out Noel – absolutely perfect for the job!

IMG_3688

IMG_2797

I made this fairly early on in my sewing days, and probably didn’t do as good a job as I could have done. I essentially just cut out each of the squares, folded under the edges and stitched them down (except for the felt, which didn’t need it), making a bit more of a proper hem on the top edge, and then sewed each pocket onto my backing fabric. The Noel squares were a bit smaller than I made the rest of the pockets, and they also didn’t have enough leeway to turn in the top and the bottom edges. Instead, I sewed a strip of red ribbon along the edges on these squares.

IMG_2798

I did also have plans to knit a couple of the squares, but I only managed to get halfway through one before I ran out of time, so had to give up on that idea!

IMG_3751

Some of the pockets I made a bit more of an effort with, and embroidered (I use that term loosely!) some Christmassy designs onto. These are some of my favourite pockets, particularly the baubles one. I used some sparkly thread for some of them, which worked really well. I sewed over the designs two or three times, which made the colours stand out more, but I think also gives them a really nice ‘sketchy’ look.

IMG_2794

IMG_2795

IMG_2796

IMG_3754

The backing fabric was a loose weave fabric, sort of like a light hessian, and it was perfect for the job. I folded over the top edge to make a tube, which I then threaded some spare tent poles through, so that I could tie ribbon onto the ends, and hang it from an over door hook. I also hemmed the bottom edge, and left the sides unhemmed, and I sewed Merry Christmas ribbon along the top and bottom.

IMG_2800

IMG_3755

If I recall correctly, I cut it a bit fine time-wise and struggled to get it all finished before the 1st December, but just about managed it. I also only just got it finished before my previous sewing machine decided to die on me.

IMG_3752

This year we are going to share the filling of the advent calendar, so I get to open some too – yay! When I suggested that we do half each this year, Marcus said that he had been planning on filling it for me, so we could take it in turns – how sweet is he?! :) But sharing makes it easier as well – I have to admit, it was hard work finding 24 things to fill it with that were small enough to fit in the pockets!

Although it only gets used once a year, it’s nice knowing that we will hopefully use this for years to come.

Advertisements

Some sewing-related birthday goodies!

7 Nov

It was my birthday last week, and I got given a few lovely sewing-related goodies, which I thought I’d share with you.

First let me show you this beautiful handmade bag that my lovely friend Marion made me. It’s a little bag for storing your underwear in when you’re travelling – particularly if you’re only taking cabin baggage, so that, if your bag happens to be searched, your underwear doesn’t go flying everywhere on show to the world! What a great idea :)

IMG_2791

IMG_2792

Marion has a just published a post on how she made this bag on her blog, if you want to check it out.

Another beautiful handmade thing in the form of a birthday card from my parents (how awesome is that?!), along with a couple of other sewing-themed cards.

IMG_2784

 

These are so going in frames on the wall when I get my sewing room!

Some new patterns from Marcus to add to my list of things to make:

IMG_2781

Very excited about these, I feel some By Hand London mash-ups coming on!

And my lovely sewing buddy Clare gave me a book all about various crafts, with lots of stuff for home – I plan on using a lot of the ideas from here when we get our house :)

IMG_2786

I particularly like this idea of using a small wooden wine crate as a hidden key box.

IMG_2788

Before I started sewing, when Marcus or my parents or my sister asked me what I wanted for my birthday, I never really knew what to tell them. I think that, once you get to the stage of life where you are earning a decent salary, most of the time, if you want something, often you can just buy it, rather than having to wait until your birthday/Christmas. But since I began sewing, I have no end of patterns and various other sewing bits that I’d like, but can’t quite justify buying all of them myself! And having a hobby like sewing means that people come across things that they think you’d like too :)

I will leave you with this, un-sewing related, but unbelievably awesome present from Marcus, a little sloth necklace!

IMG_2782How cute is that?! It comes from Mark Poulin’s etsy shop, and I first saw it months ago and absolutely fell in love. Although I warn you now, do not click that link if you don’t have good willpower – I could quite easily buy up half the items in that shop!

All in all, a very good birthday. Marcus arranged a sort-of-surprise meal out for me (I knew we were going out, I had a pretty good idea where, but no idea who was coming, which I think is the best way!) to a pub that does the best slow cooked lamb I have ever had in my entire life. Ever. Ever. It was a brilliant evening, so thank you to everyone who came along to help me celebrate.

chinelo bally

Dressmaker| Author| Blogger| Freehand cutter

infectiousstitches

Sewing, quilting and pattern making

Red Hot Rosie

Sewing Vintage for Dummies (that'd be Me)

Laura After Midnight

Behind the seams at Midnight Costume Services!

ZegnaJewelry

ZEGNA ASTON handmade

Sarabwritings's Blog

Life's Musings...being unemployed, starting out as a freelancer, and planning a wedding

stitchnsew

A topnotch WordPress.com site

Feel the fear and sew it anyway

Don't be afraid - it's only fabric!

Dresses & Me

I love to sew

Drama Queen Seams

Where handmade is back in style...

Awesome Åshild

Did You Do A "Something Every Day" Today?

Buzy Day

The adventure of NikkiM

christineshellard9

Late comer to climbing and want to share that experience with others

What Would Nancy Drew Wear?

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.

I want to be a turtle

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.

Molly's Sewing and Garage Sale Adventures

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.

Tea For Two

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.

Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.

Tilly and the Buttons

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.

'So, Zo...'

Adventures in sewing and other crafty endeavours.