30 November 2008

Last minute evening craftacularness

Since 2005 (when V was born), I have these intense, crazy nostalgia-filled waves around the holidays. I could go on and on about this (lord knows...) but today I'm going to focus on just one area of nostalgia: The Advent Calendar. At our house, these were store-bought ones with chocolates or other little candies behind each punch-out door. (Apparently, they haven't changed at all in 30 years. Odd). I seem to remember at least one of them hanging on the kitchen door, and in my earliest memories of them, my sister and I took turns opening doors. This happy holiday tradition couldn't last, of course, and soon we each got our own. I remember one year, I was maybe 8, and the chocolate was sooooo good...that I ate about a week ahead in my calendar. Not a solid week, of course, but two days here, two days there...When my mom found out, she didn't get mad, but just said "How sad for you, Jenny. Now you won't have a chocolate today." I was more horrified at that reaction than if she'd been furious.

But enough about my chocolate-based disobediences of yesteryear. With V being fully excited this year about the holidays, I wanted her to have her own advent calendar. We're hoping to slightly limit her choclate intake, so the old-school paper calendar was out. I looked at this, and this, and this, and wound up just making my own, as usual. I went for simple, lovingly made, and not-too-time consuming. The numbers are hand-embroidered, the wool felt is just what I had in the house (I know the mix of colors is not traditional, and most people would not put burnt orange with dusty purple and rose, but I am not traditional nor most people), the ribbon is brown satin from a JoAnns grabbag, and the stockings themselves are machine stitched and machine-sewn to the ribbon. I cut all the stockings out Friday, sewed the numbers yesterday, and machine stitched it all together this evening. Here's the finished shot of the whole she-bang.

And because I can't bear it when people comment on how cute something I've made is if I have just given a wide-angled shot, here are two of the most wonky stockings:
The silver-y thread did not show up well enough on a couple of the colors, so some of the earlier stockings got re-stitched like on #8. And #7? Yeah, I'm not sure what happened to old #7. If we had a dog, I'd blame the dog. But the truth is? As my sister puts it, I'm "not so much into the fine details."

So, ta-da! Our advent calendar. Now I have to think of something to put in for tomorrow. Any suggestions? And, um, please don't say chocolate, because I think I ate it all.


Megan said...

As time passes, and people forget that you took credit/blame for the stockings, you could always pass the credit/blame onto V. Unsuspecting, innocent, sweet girl that she is...I'll bet she wouldn't mind one bit. And rather than critique your method, everyone would be genuinely impressed with her efforts!

Ok...so maybe I'm evil and should be magically poofed into a skunk or some such thing for my wicked mind. I'll work on my conniving ways, I promise.

J. Beyer said...

for stocking:

marshmallows? (around #20, you'll have an opportunity for a science lesson).
itty-bitty photos of family members?
Parts to a doll that can be assembled at the end? :) What can I say, I'm a stickler for the chocolate. Luckily, she's too young to know what she's missing!