If you’ve never made an advent calendar, try it this year! Advents are a fun tradition because they give your family something to look forward to each day. My friends with small children tend toward candies and small toys on their advent. This year for Jeremy and me, we decided to fill each day with a fun activity. Each envelope holds something like a new recipe to try together, a cheerful spot to visit, or a special album from our childhoods to listen to while we eat dinner. There are endless ways to fill your advent calendar, so choose what best fits your family and routines. The purpose of an advent is to pause each day and appreciate this season that flies by way too fast. We are working again with our longtime supporters at Canon USA to bring this project to life.
Here’s a video of how I put together our advent tree! (It’s super easy!)
The video shows the basics of how to make everything. This isn’t a super technical project and most of you could probably figure out how to make it just by looking at it. I did, however, want to back up and explain a few extra tips… especially printing on envelopes!
I use this technique to print on any small paper, tags, envelopes, or special paper for my scrapbooks. This is one of those techniques that you’ll use all the time after you try it the first time! We’re using my go-to printer in the office, the PIXMA iP8720 printer, because (1) I LOVE the color accuracy, and (2) the wide format makes it possible to get more numbers on one page.
1. Print whatever you’ll eventually print on your envelopes to just a regular piece of photo paper. These will become your markers for where to tape your envelopes! At this stage you can make sure your spacing works and there is no overlapping. Mark the top of your paper, and note whether you need to send the top through first like I did (so your numbers don’t print backwards). 2-3. Tape envelopes over every number. Be sure the number is completely covered because your new numbers will print in the exact same spots. 4. Send the envelope-covered sheet back through your printer and you’ll have beautiful printed envelopes!
Here’s what the back of the wood looks like. It’s about 2′ x 3′. If you are comfortable with hammer and nails, you could make one out of 3-foot planks from any hardware store. Or you could just buy a larger piece of plywood that’s already the size you need.
One last thing! This sketch shows how I did the nails for the string art. I nailed the pink nails first and then just filled in straight(ish) lines of nails between each point. I added three extra nails into the middle just to give more places to wrap the string for a fuller look.
And here are some photos of the finished project!
Credits: Author: Elsie Larson, Project Assistant: Laura Gummerman, Photography: Sarah Rhodes and Elsie Larson. Photos edited with Suzette from The Lightroom Collection. Video and Music: Jeremy Larson.