Tis’ the advent season! Instead of sending all of our customers a little chocolate each day we have decided to give you all to something we know you will love.
This year we wanted to treat our SewandSo customers with a cross stitch advent calendar. From the 1st December to the 24th December you will receive a free cross stitch chart, straight to the downloads section in your account, to stitch onto your advent calendar.
There are candy canes, elves, gingerbread and baubles. Come Christmas eve you will have your very own advent calendar that you can use year after year.
Once you have stitched all your designs onto the Aida Bands you will be able to make up your finished advent calendar.
To make the wall hanging calendar you will need:
- Six lengths of white gold-edged 14 count Aida bands
- Two pieces of felt 38 x 76cm
- Iron on interfacing
- Two ‘D’ rings
- 3 strands of contrasting stranded cotton for the blanket stitch edging (optional)
Stitching the pockets
1. Mark the bands on the Aida with the positions of the pockets. Each motif is centred in a space of 31 stitches and there are four to each band. Count the spaces carefully and mark with a pin. You will need to leave about seven stitches at each end for hems. Check the spacing, then tack (baste) along the dividing lines.
2 To avoid confusion stitch all the numbers first in backstitch, referring to the chart below. You could stitch the numbers in order or mix them up, the choice is yours! The image shows two strands of 838 for these to give definition.
3. When all the bands are complete, iron the interfacing to the back and press small hems under. This will strengthen your work and give a neat and professional fi nish. Do not remove your tacking (basting) at this stage. It is useful when attaching the pockets to the wall hanging.
Making the wall hanging
1. Measure 7.5cm (3in) from the top of the felt and position the first row of pockets centrally. The long edge of the band can be lined up with the lower border of the picture. Now lay out the remaining strips, leaving about 12mm (1/2 in) between each band. Take your time getting this right and adjust as necessary. Finally, place the lower picture below the pockets. Pin everything in position.
2. Now attach the bands. It is easier to stitch the vertical lines on the pockets first and then the horizontal line at the bottom. Use contrasting cotton for defi nition and follow your original tacking lines.
3. Lay the two felt pieces together, right sides out, and topstitch all round about 1cm (.⁄8in) away from the edge. If desired, work a decorative border of blanket stitch around the edge, using the line of topstitching as a guide. This is optional because the felt will never fray.
4. Attach two ‘D’ rings to the back, fill the pockets with chocolate coins or other small goodies and your advent calendar is ready to use. After use, roll up the calendar and store it in a pillowcase. The felt ensures a robust construction that will allow many years of enjoyment for generations of children.
Now all you have to do is decide what to put in your advent calendar for next year! Maybe treat yourself to a new skein of thread each day or a chocolate. Whatever you choose, this advent calendar can be bought our year after year.
Head to your account on the store and check your downloads to get your free chart from the 1st – 24th December. Show us your finished calendars by tagging us on social media using #SewandSo