Unique Advent Calendar

The concept is simple- starting December 1st, open one small gift a day up until Christmas Eve.  The vessel used to be simple too- a thin cardboard box that held one piece of chocolate behind 24 perforated doors.  These timeless calendars can still be found in most grocery stores, but many companies have started to raise the bar.   Nowadays you can find adult advents that hold a small bottle of alcohol for each day, pet advents that hold sweet potato treats for your 4-legged kids, and so on.  These are all fabulous choices, but how about a fully customizable advent calendar that you can make once and use year after year?  ArtFire will show you how!


  • 8- ½ yd pieces of various fabric
  • 3- spools of ribbon
  • Scissors 
  • Cutting mat
  • Rotary cutter
  • Straight pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread 

This is a super fun project for anyone who has access to a sewing machine.  The idea is to make 24 fabric bags of various sizes.  Once you are done, you fill each bag with a treat of your choice.  You can hang your bags from a garland, put them in a basket, or leave one out on the kitchen table each day.  However you decide to display your advent, it is sure to be a hit with the lucky recipient.

Step 1 is heading to your favorite fabric store to gather the fabric and ribbon you will be using.  I purchased ½ yard of 8 different prints and 4 spools of ribbon/twine.  I have two kiddos so I made 48 bags using these items.

The fun thing about this project is that there really isn’t a set way to do it!  My smallest bag is 2”x2” and my largest is 4”x6”.  I did not plan out the sizes, I just laid the fabric out on my cutting mat and cut the sizes that I thought looked “about right”.  Some of my bags are tall and thin (perfect to conceal a soda bottle), others are short and squatty (great for a pack of gum).

After cutting 24 various size pieces of fabric, turn them wrong side facing out and fold it in half (the colorful sides of the fabric will be touching and the dull sides will be showing on the outside).  Pin the sides of your fabric to keep them from shifting while you sew them.  Using your sewing machine (I used a zig-zag stitch), sew the sides together. 

While still inside out, fold the top over about 1” and sew around the top of the fabric, starting at the side seam and going around the top of the fabric until you reach where you started.  Turn your bag right-side out and take a look at your creation! 

Next, cut a piece of ribbon that you feel is the correct length to secure the top of your bag.  I cut my ribbon pieces about 8” long.  Find the center of your ribbon and tack it to the side of your bag along the seam.  Ta-da, your first bag is done!

Once you are done making all of your bags, run to the local dollar store and grab some of your favorite items to fill the bags.  Some of my favorite items are: gum, chocolate, PopRocks, soda, bath bombs, magic towels, craft supplies, socks …  

If you don’t have time to craft your own advent calendar, be sure to check out these ones that our ArtFire merchants have in their shops!

Happy Crafting!

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