Monday, November 18, 2013

Xyron's 30 days of Holiday Projects: Countdown Calendar
Confession time... I've been listening to Christmas Music for over a week now. Some of you may not think that you have to wait until Christmas, but I never followed that rule. And today's project just needs a little Christmas song to make it just right.
Today's project is super fun, and super easy. Everything is modifiable for both people with and without die cut machines, or die cuts.
To start, I grabbed a Tolsby frame from Ikea. The reason that I really like this frame is that it is double sided and comes with a stand that won't get knocked over by little (or big) hands. And at 99 cents... Can't beat that! I started by taking out the thin plexiglass that is in the frame.
I used both my Silhouette and hand cut (because of course I forgot to count the cover page...) the pages. Each page is 3.25 x 5.25" and has two hole punches on the top. For the Silhouette cuts, I just made rectangles to the correct size, and double checked that the holes would work. All of the paper is from Studio Calico's Magical line, and the embellishments are from American Crafts.
I used a couple of rings that I had lying around. Most craft stores have them for under a dollar apiece. I think I just eyeballed where the ring and the paper would go, but if you are going to machine cut, I would practice with scrap paper before running your nice cardstock through, just in case you have to change the placement of the holes.
I then cut out all of my numbers, 1-25. If you don't have access to a manual or electric die cutting machine, you could easily draw each number, print on white paper, or use stickers.
I then ran all of my numbers through my Xyron 9" Creative Station. Once they were turned into stickers, it was super easy to attach them to each page.
The white paper that I used to mount all of the numbers on was cut to 2.75 x 4.25". I used my Xyron Mega Runner to attach them all to each of the patterned paper pages.
Once the white cardstock was attached, I placed all of the numbers next. The trick with this, is that if you are completely perfect it looks great, and if you are a little haphazard (like me) and don't try to force it, it also looks great.
Once all of the numbers were placed, I used my white Signo Uniball pen to add some faux stitching, which makes the dark kraft paper look similar to gingerbread now.
Lastly, use stickers (these are American Crafts Peppermint Express Remarks), dimensional adhesive, some great gems and other patterned papers to decorate the cover and important days. I wanted this to be a perpetual calendar, so I'm not going to specify any days other than Christmas and Christmas Eve.
Now, my kiddos have a non-candy advent calendar that is self-contained (important with a toddler and pre-K kiddo!), and can teach the little one her numbers as she gets older.
See, it turns just easy!!

Supplies Used:

Xyron: 9" Creative Station, Xyron Mega Runner, American Crafts Imaginisce (Colors of Christmas Collection) Bling, Studio Calico patterned papers (Magical: Christmas Eve, Seasonal Sights, Candy Cane Lanes, Holiday Joy, Chalking it Twice, Making a List), American Crafts Peppermint Express Remarks, American Crafts/Imaginisce bling, American Crafts dark kraft, TOLBSY Ikea frame, rings, Signo pen, Neenah cover stock
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  1. Love this great idea. Wish we had an Ikea store. It's 3 hours away and not available on-line. Is there any other place to get this frame?

    1. This particular one, I don't think so... But any frame that has a two-sided opening should work just as easily. If you didn't have a frame like this, I'm sure you could also use a stand or hanging mini album.

    2. I just ordered 2 frames from Amazon. $5.44

  2. What a great idea! Wish I had an IKEA closer (mine is 6 hours in one direction, 10 in the other...). I've asked my daughter to shop for me, but I'm guessing someon mush have something else that would work.

  3. Do you have the Silhouette cutting file that you would be willing to share?

  4. what a great idea, thanks.

    greetings from germany, hippe

  5. what size rings did you use?

  6. I know this was posted years ago, but just in case anyone is looking at it now for Christmas 2017, Michaels sells these frames, too! Absolutely love this countdown calendar. Will definitely be making one soon!