November 29, 2011

Our Advent Calendar ♥

You know, there is something to be said for creative inspiration born of necessity. And I have wanted to make an advent calendar but I was unsure how or where to put it.  But my criteria was to make it, find a place for it, and use what I have but still try to make an impact.
So this is what I came up with. I love that it ended up looking like diorama but instead of a shoe box...I use an entire bookcase. To be more specific, I used a Billy Bookcase from IKEA. And the fact that I use the word "DIORAMA" further proves the geek girl that I am. At first,  I felt a little crazy starting this project but now...
I am IN COMPLETE LOVE WITH IT!
Each numbered box is a take out box leftover from my Fortune Cookie Thanksgiving Favors.
To decorate the shelves I basically "shopped my house."  I chose a red and white theme as my only criteria and just kind of threw things together from all over the house to make a sort of "scene" on each shelf to create the diorama look for the advent calendar.

The boxes contain an assortment of Christmas goodies like little chocolates, ornaments, stickers, or activities which I coordinated with my calendar.  Those activities could be baking cookies, doing a Christmas craft, or our family tradition of getting in our pj's, and driving in our car to look at Christmas lights while drinking hot chocolate and eating popcorn.  The girls literally talk about that one all year long. :o)
Within each box is also a little paper circle with an attribute of Jesus with a coordinating verse to read after we open each one. I got that amazing idea from  Milk and Cookies and you can find a printable included with it which is what I used inside my boxes. I am really excited to do this with the girls!
You probably recognize some things I have done on the blog already this season.  It gets kind of challenging incorporating a red and white theme so I literally pulled things out of nowhere if it fit the color scheme. Thread, buttons, doilies, little pots, yarn, etc.

Those little snowflakes back there are popped in a random bottle with sugar.
I am all for an "anything goes" mentality with free decor. :)
 BOX #17 DOWN!  BOX #17 DOWN!!!!!!
Whew.  Box #17 made it back up. ;)
Some takeout boxes and ornaments bravely lost their lives during this project.
I think I love the randomness of it best of all. Like using ordinary objects such as spools of twine or a mitten gift card holder to make the color scheme work.
 I'm also rather smitten with how some boxes are hung high, attached to the back of the bookcase or elevated by a candlestick or something.  The varying heights make it look interesting and fun although I think I should have backed the bookcase with a red fabric or wrapping paper or something. It looks too washed out up close but as a whole I do think it looks very pretty.  It is simple and fresh with the red and white.
I was going to do a separate post on these white trees but I wondered if y'all might be "treed" out by now.  But if you are interested, I used felt, yarn, and paper flowers for those and used straight pins for all of them so I could reuse the cones at the end of the season.
 Oooh...the final box.  Are you supposed to do Christmas Day on an advent?  
I see it both ways so I just went for it.
Are any of you weird like me and can actually SPARE a bookshelf for a project like this? I think it is a fun idea but I am sure I will do something new and different next year. And as we use each box, I will just decorate each shelf until we are done.  Yippee!  I get to keep decorating a little each week!
Merry, Merry & Fa La La 

37 comments:

  1. What a great idea!! I was just thinking the other day about how I could make an advent calendar & where I could display it & thought to myself "I bet Jessica has a cute advent calendar up her sleeve!" And VOILA, I log onto blogger tonight & you are the first post in my Google reader!! It looks gorgeous my friend!!

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  2. Jessica that is Beautiful.. I love the Fresh and Crisp feel it has.. I am afraid I would have a VERY hard time holding myself back from peeking inside those adorable little boxes.. :)

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  3. This is stunning! I love this look. You have some serious talent, thanks for the inspiration!

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  4. I just adore this. It's stunning and so much fun. I was thinking of making an advent calendar this year, but ummm... December's sneaking up on me. Maybe next year!

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  5. The geek in me wonders how and why I might have an excuse to make a diorama ever again. So far I've come up with nothing. But I'm not giving up. LOVE what you've done here. I wish I had a free bookcase.

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  6. Wow this is the best advent calendar I have seen. Very creative! All your pictures are so perfect. Please share your photography tips. Btw, thank you for stopping by Space 46 and following. Best, My

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  7. Your so funny! You always bring a smile to my face! Love your crafts, your a genius!!! xoxo

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  8. GORGEOUS! This is the prettiest advent calendar i have ever seen! Love it!!!

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  9. Sooooooo adorable!!!! I really LOVE LOVE LOVE IT! I can imagine all the memories you are making! What fun all month long!!! & the way you set it up is ADORABLE!!! I love that Christ is a big part of it too!!! You continue to amaze me everyday!

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  10. is there no end to your creative genius?! freakin' sweet. dude, i'd buy a billy bookcase just to make this! well, maybe. love it!

    we do the lights drive, too, but without refreshments. maybe next year when i trust them with hot beverages...

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  11. Oh my word...ADORABLE. Hands down fabulousness. Seriously, you are so incredible Jessica. Love love love love L.O.V.E. Every. Single. Detail. You are amazing Jessica. Amazing.

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  12. JAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAW DROPPING!!!!!!! there is NO END to your creative genius! there isn't!!!!! i don't have the words -- if i did this would go on and on and on!!!!! AMAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAZING!!!!!!! now if i could have one of those advent calendars TO GO : ) LOL!!! couldn't resist! now -- if you could have a hot chinese meal in each one of those containers for the next 25 days !!!! hey -- i can dream can't it! i just love love love this!!!!! applause and apaws coming your way my friend! hugs...

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  13. OMG: I love, love this advent idea. Love the color scheme and how you used your entire bookshelf for it. This is one of the most adorable things I have seen in a long, long time.
    And while we are on adorable, your silver ball wreath is also on my bookmarked sites. It is so dang cute. Great job. So glad I found your blog.
    Marian H

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  14. When viewing your advent calendar I was totally thinking...wow I wish I had the room for that. It's stunning...I love the white and red and just the whole thing! Thanks for sharing! Oh and I am having a day 25 in my advent calendar but that is where the greatest gift of all will be (baby Jesus for our Nativity scene!). Visiting from The Creative Spark

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  15. Ok, seriously, no lie....I made a trip to Walmart at 9:00pm last night to get stuff to make my own Advent Calendar! You inspired me!! It's up on the blog now....not nearly as cute as yours, but I did make one!! Isn't that what counts?!

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  16. I love how this looks! What a great idea.

    I'd love for you to link up and share:
    http://tutusandteaparties.blogspot.com/2011/11/pinteresting-linky-party-week-fifteen.html

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  17. Jessica sweet love... I am featuring you tomorrow during STICKER TIME! Thank you so much for sharing!

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  18. I love, love, love it!! My goodness I adore your creativity!!
    Thanks for sharing at Show & Share!

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  19. Wow! This is just amazing! I've linked to your post from my Facebook page :)

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  20. I love this idea! I know my husband would love it too since he is big into the advent calendar! lol.

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  21. Okay! I love this idea! What an adorable way to create an advent calendar... using an entire bookshelf! And I'm loving those cute little chinese boxes!! Thanks for linking up to Sassy Sites today!

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  22. what an amazing project. Love the takeout boxes...I'm always looking for ways to use them.

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  23. Wow, Jessica - that is truly amazing! You sure have done a lovely job with your advent bookcase. I've posted about advent calendars too today and I've got this linked, for inspiration!

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  24. Oh, I love it! So clean and crisp! And you can never have too much baker's twine! I love that you "shopped your house" for stuff! I do that too sometimes when I'm looking for photo props. =) I bet your sweet girls are gonna have a blast with this! My sister and I used to use several different advent calendars where every morning we'd open little doors or pin a stuffed bear somewhere. Oh, the memories! =)

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  25. I have wanted to do an advent calendar for years, but nothing seemed quite to my style until I ran across this. It is gorgeous! Thank you for sharing!

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  26. Beautiful!!!! New fans from Spain :)

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  27. This is just SO beautiful and creative! Thanks so much for linking up to The Creative Spark. I always LOVE having you! I'll be featuring it today. Enjoy your Sunday!
    Jenn :)

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  28. CUTE! LOVE it! I just posted my advent calendar too BUT I love your idea of adding the bible verse!

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  29. I found your blog this weekend and just could not get enough of it. Love your post and all your decorations. The hanging wreath is beautiful. I was so intrigued by it.
    Thanks for sharing your ideas. I am looking forward to reading some more post.

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  30. By the way I'm featuring this tomorrow in this week's Show & Share! :)

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  31. This is so unique and beyond cute!! I love it!! Would love for you to please share it via my Pin'Inspirational Thursday linky party please...LOVE LOVE :)) http://theartsygirlconnection.blogspot.com/2011/12/pininspirational-thursday-11-linky.html?m=1 *Thanks so much :)) Wishing you a happy Thursday..~Marilyn*

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  32. This looks amazing! Kinda makes me feel a little corny for my very uncreative advent thingy (scrapbook paper, chain of links, remove one each day, etc.) but this gives me something BIG and awesome to strive for next year, right?! You are always an inspiration, friend! I LOVE it!

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  33. Would love love love for yout to share this at our party going on now http://space46.blogspot.com/2011/12/co-hosting-pinteresting-link-party-week.html. Happy holiday! My

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  34. Thank you so much for the mention. Your shelves are GORGEOUS! I truly dream about Christmas all year long.

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