Christmas 2017 Advent Wreath Explosion Box

Hi Everyone!

Today’s post is a special one for me.  It shares a tradition that my family does every year during Advent.  That is the Advent Wreath.  For each of the four Sundays before Christmas, a candle is lit and prayers are said to help prepare our hearts for the birth of Our Savior.  It creates special and peaceful family moments, as we ponder the miracle that we celebrate on Christmas Day.  So this project is especially joy-filled for me, because it shares a very precious tradition.

Scroll down for the video tutorial.

Let’s start with the box.  Take an 8″ x 8″ piece of card stock, and score at 2″ on all four sides.  Using a ruler, make a score line from where the 2″ lines intersect straight out the the corresponding corner.  Then, cut the corner off by cutting from score line to score line across one corner.  Repeat for all four corners, then fold and burnish the score lines.

In the corners between the “candle clusters”, I cut the three leaves off of the leaf punch, and stuck them on with glue dots careful not to cross any of the fold lines.  Using a 1/4″ punch and cherry cobbler card stock, I punched a couple of “berries” to glue on as well.  This filled out the “wreath” and made it appear to go all the way around.  I arranged the leaves and berries different in each corner, but always took care not to cross the folds so the box would still fold up properly.

For each “cluster” under the candle, I used two old olive pine branches, two cherry cobbler branches, and two leaf punchies.  The “clusters” were glued on with Tombow liquid glue, lots of it, and given enough time to dry.  I did not want them to come off, and was relying on them to hold the candles on.  I also used one banner from the Bunch of Banners in whisper white.  Each banner was stamped with the appropriate prayer, and in the appropriate color,and then the edges were sponged with the same ink.

  1. 1st week is HOPE in Fresh Fig
  2. 2nd week is PEACE in Fresh Fig
  3. 3rd week is JOY in Powder Pink
  4. 4th week is LOVE in Fresh Fig

Purple is a color of repentance and preparation, so during those weeks we focus on preparing our hearts.  Pink is a color of celebration and rejoicing, because we are more than half-way through our Advent, and we will soon celebrate the birth of Our Savior.

The candles are from IKEA, but any candle ~1 1/2″ diameter will do.  These are ~5/8″ high.  Three candles were wrapped with a purple ribbon for the first, second and fourth weeks (Fresh Fig Finely Woven Ribbon); and one candle was wrapper with pink for the third week (Powder Pink Finely Woven Ribbon) using tear and tape.  When the “clusters” had a chance to dry for around 20 minutes, I used a ring of dimensionals (6 on the bottom of each candle) to stick the candle to the center of the “cluster” on the corresponding side.  If the dimensionals don’t readily stick, use some rubbing alcohol to wipe the bottom of the candle, let dry, and they should stick like champs.  If the candle slides out of the votive, just stick a couple of glue dots on the bottom, and stick it back in.  I only had one that slid out, but the glue dots kept it in place.

For the top, I used a “shim” of two layers of card stock, and butted the Year of Cheer DSP to it on the left side of the score board.  Then, I scored at 1″ on all four sides, careful not to let the top slide under the shim.  Cut up each score line, then miter slightly into each side of the square tab. Using a strong adhesive, glue the four tabs into a box.  Decorate with die cuts as shown, or as you desire, and adhere stitched circle sentiment to scalloped layering circle using fast fuse, and to box using dimensionals.  The Year of Cheer DSP makes everything made with it quite beautiful.

I hope your enjoy this project as much as I enjoyed share it with you.

Until we meet again, may our days be blessed.  ~Darby

  • Supplies are Stampin’ Up! unless stated
  • Stamps: Carols of Christmas, Christmas Pines, Labeler Alphabet
  • Dies:  Stitched Shapes, Layering Circles, Bunch of Banners, Pretty Pines
  • Ink: cherry cobbler, fresh fig, powder pink
  • Card Stock: old olive, cherry cobbler, early espresso, chocolate chip
  • Ribbon:  finely woven ribbon in fresh fig and powder pink
  • Leaf punch, 1/4 circle punch

Advent Calendar Book with Scripture and a treat!

Hi Everyone!

I have a fun and inspirational Christmas tradition to share with you today.  A book-style Advent Calendar with treats!

Scroll down for video tutorial

The one on the left, made with the Quilted Christmas papers and Christmas Quilt stamp set, was the prototype.  But I realized it would cut into three pieces of card stock, and I didn’t need that much room inside the boxes.  So, I reconfigured it and created the one on the right.  You can get the three pieces of card stock you need from one 12×12 sheet.  Much better use of resources.

Take a 12×12″ sheet of card stock, make a cut at 6 3/4″.  Take that piece, turn the 12″ side up, and cut it at 6″.  This will give you two pieces that are 6″ by 6 3/4″.  Score both pieces at 1/2″ and 1″ on all four sides.  This will create two reinforced boxes.

The leftover piece is 5 1/4″ wide, cut the length to 9 3/4″ for the cover.  With the 9 3/4″ side up, score at 4 3/8″, 4 7/8″ and 5 3/8″.  Fold and burnish the outer two score lines, the middle score line is to help line up the boxes.  I decorated the front and back with patterned paper and seasonal images, and then rounded all the corners to finish it.

On the inside, adhere a 32″ piece of ribbon across the center horizontally, and glue each of the boxes to their respective side, butting the inner edge against the corresponding score line.  I used Tombow Liquid glue, it seems to hold quite well.

Here are the front and back of the Quilted Christmas Advent Calendar.  The picture below shows the inside.

The daily boxes were made on the envelope punch board.  Take a 3×3″ piece of designer series paper, punch and score at 1 1/8″ and 1 3/4″ on the first side and turn the paper.  Then, punch and score by lining up the “nib” on the previous score lines.  Do this all the way around.  Round the corners in the top of the punch.  On two opposite sides, cut next to the tab to the first score line to create tabs.  I used glue dots on the tabs and formed it into a box.  Make 24 of these.  To speed things up, I punched two squares at the same time, careful to make sure they stayed lined up throughout the process.  Don’t worry if they are not all exact, it will work.

Here are the front and back of the Wood Textures Advent Calendar book.  I had some of the Wood Textures paper left, and though it would make a beautiful, natural, woodsy, more masculine version of the Advent Calendar.  I used the Smitten Mittens stamp set, and cherry cobbler and old olive.  Here is the inside.

Doesn’t it feel so earthy and natural?  The little boxes hold a Starburst, an individually wrapped Lifesaver candy, or a Brach’s Starlight mint or other disc candy.  Included in each box, is a scripture verse for Advent on a paper punched with the Classic Label Punch:  for the Quilted Christmas, I used printer paper; for the Wood Textures, I found a light colored piece of paper in the stack and punched the labels out of that.  The scripture verses were hand-written one each paper, it was folded in half, and then placed on the candy in the box.  If you wish to use scripture, you can look online for “Bible verses for Advent”, and you can find different lists.  Or, you can write activities to do, or inspirational and encouraging words.

After filling, I closed each box in this order:  The side flaps first, the bottom flap second, and the top flap last.  I used a mini-dimensional on the point of the top flap, but before I closed it, I stuck my finger on it a few times to make it less tacky.  This way, the top flap will hold, but the user can still peel it open without tearing the paper.  The last things to add were the labels.  I punched 24 x 1″ circles from whisper white card stock, and stamped the appropriate numbers on each using the Labeler Alphabet and Early Espresso ink.  Then, I just went through my Christmas stamp sets to find small images to stamp on each circle.  In order to see the numbers, most images were offset, and I stamped off ink that was very dark.  Then, each circle was glued onto the top flap of the corresponding day.  I did them in order from left to right, top to bottom.  But, my daughter mentioned I should do them in random order, so the recipient would have to search for each day to open it.  Either way, it gives them a fun and tasty way to countdown to and prepare for Christmas.

I hope you try this project, it is a little more time consuming, but well worth the effort.  And, until we meet again, I hope your days are blessed.  ~Darby

  • Supplies are Stampin’ Up!
  • Card stock:  Whisper White, Early Espresso, Old Olive
  • Paper: Quilted Christmas, Wood Texture
  • Stamps: Christmas Quilt, Smitten Mittens, Santa’s Sleigh (bow)
  • Dies:  Lots of Labels, Many Mittens
  • Ribbon: Garden Green Striped Satin, Old Olive Mini-Chevron
  • Ink: Early Espresso, Cherry Cobbler, Old Olive, Soft Sky, Blushing Bride, Lemon-Lime Twist, Crumb Cake.

Christmas 2017 #10 Christmas Card with pocket

For Christmas 2017, I am going to create TWO projects every week.  And, they will be created in the order that I usually create during the Christmas countdown.  So, I start with Christmas cards.  Often, Christmas cards do double-duty, and carry newsletters, pictures, gift certificates, or even money.  So, for my second project, I created a card that will carry all those and so much more!

The card measures 9 1/4″ by 3 7/8″, and will fit just right into a #10 business size envelope.  You can make them, or you can purchase them in multitudes of colors at the local office supply store.  Or, if you have Amazon Prime, just order a few from Amazon and you won’t even have to leave the house!  Might be beneficial for those up North who are starting to get that cold, fluffy-white stuff!

The pocket is 8 3/4″ long, so you can fit a standard letter sized paper, carefully folder into thirds, right into the pocket.  You can also fit 3 1/2″ by 5″ pictures, gift certificates, and even money! Because it fits in a #10 envelope, it only needs one first-class stamp to mail in the United States.

Use 1/4″ tear and tape on top and bottom of pocket to give you the most room in the pocket.

Thank you for visiting!  Until we meet again, I hope your days are blessed!  ~Darby

  • Supplies
  • Santa’s Sleigh stamp set and matching framelits.
  • Inks: Soft sky and cherry cobbler pads, soft suede marker
  • Card base:  Old Olive 9 1/4″ by 8 1/2″ (8 1/4″ works, too)  Score with the short side up at 3 7/8″ and 7 3/4″.
  • Card front:  Mat: Soft Sky 9″ by 3 1/2″, Hills: whisper white 3 1/2″ by 6, hand cut into “hills”, Deer: soft suede; Trees: old olive and whisper white.  Banner:  Soft sky 3/8″ by 3 1/2″, whisper white 4″ by 1/2″.  Stamped using
  • Inside Pocket:  Soft Sky 9 1/4″ by 2 1/2″; whisper white 2 1/2″ by 3″ cut into “hills”.