I’ve had a few big projects lately (one you’ve still to see) and I’m feeling like I need a little bit more ‘simple’ in my life. Today’s magnetic advent calendar is just that – simple.
I’ve had these metal sheets from M-D Building Products since the Haven Conference last July. I didn’t know what to do with them, but I didn’t want to throw them out “just in case” an idea suddenly popped up.
Like if you were surfing Pottery Barn for example?
click image to go to PotteryBarn.com
I could be wrong, but this seems to be a square cookie sheet with a paper insert and a fridge magnet.
Totally worth $99 US! (not)
But it is adorable and it just so happens my sheet metal is magnetic…
At the conference I also picked up a metal punch and a corner punch from M-D Building Products, so I finally put them to use:
punching holes in the metal so I could thread a ribbon through,
and rounding the corners so that there were no sharp edges.
The next part of my DIY magnetic advent calendar gave me a bit of stress – the boxes and numbering.
I used my Silhouette Cameo and played around with a couple of different layouts.
That wasn’t the hard part. The hard part was after the adhesive vinyl was cut.
Normally you’d use sticky paper to take the vinyl numbers from the cutting sheet to the surface you want them adhered to.
It works perfectly… except for if the surface you want to adhere them to is paper. Then the sticky paper AND the adhesive vinyl stick to your paper and it’s a mess.
If you are transferring your adhesive numbers onto paper, you’ll have to do it by hand – one at a time.
I stuck mine onto scrapbook paper that had a subtle Christmas pattern on it, then I attached the scrapbook paper to the metal sheet with Mod Podge. Smooth out any wrinkles and bubbles and let dry for about 15 minutes.
While it was drying I glued a little star ornament I found at the dollar store onto a fridge magnet – also from the dollar store.
By the time you’re done that, your magnetic advent calendar will be ready for its top coat of Mod Podge.
A few wrinkles, but as the Mod Podge dried I was able to press them out and you don’t really notice them in the finished magnetic advent calendar.
The Mod Podge is sort of like a varnish – protecting the paper from dirt, tears and peeling, plus it gives it a bit of a shine.
I placed mine on a plate stand in our landing so the girls can move the magnet each day. I did thread the magnetic advent calendar with thread as well, so if we decide to hang it next year it’s ready to go.
The little ornament magnet is so cute.
Did you notice something different about my magnetic advent calendar and the Pottery Barn one I was imitating?
My countdown goes backwards from 24.
I’ve always disliked Christmas advent calendars that count upwards – like any kid wants to be reminded that they are on day 2 of 25. Not me, I want to know how many days left until the big man arrives. You can’t count the 25th as a day either because that’s THE day – the day you are counting down to reach, not another day that you have to wait through to get to the good stuff.
Less math, more anticipation.
Perhaps you can gauge my maturity level with that single paragraph disclosure? lol
I’m so glad I held on to that metal for the past 4 months! The temporary clutter was worth it for this easy Pottery Barn knock-off.
You can find the 12″ x 12″ metal sheeting at Home Depot (not the aluminum, you want the magnetic stuff) for about $6 per sheet. Scrapbook paper is around $1 per sheet and you can use adhesive vinyl for the letters and numbers or you can paint, use marker or buy thin stickers from the dollar store to make your magnetic advent calendar.
All totalled this easy Christmas DIY costs about $10 – a far cry from the $99 Pottery Barn magnetic advent calendar.
This would make a great keepsake if you let the kids draw Christmas pictures in the squares before you apply the Mod Podge – then you’d have their little drawings for years to come!
As a side note, Madison saw me photographing the advent calendar and said “I won’t say anything to Chloë, but you know that I know Santa isn’t real right?”
(Waaaaaaa-haaa-haaa – insert sound of heart breaking here)