Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cookie Sheet Advent Calendars

Well, I am officially in Christmas mode and to kick it off I thought I'd share a fun and cheap mini tutorial for making a Christmas Countdown Calendar using an old cookie sheet.
I've made a few of these and my kiddos absolutely love them. And because they are so inexpensive to assemble, they make the perfect neighbor and teacher gifts.

Here's what you need for the project:
1 cookie sheet (I found mine at the thrift store for $1.50. They seem to be pretty abundant. One little tip, be sure to take a magnet with you to make sure the cookie sheet is magnetic. I didn't realize that not all cookie sheets are magnetic so double check before you buy.

mod podge

craft paint

glitter glue (this isn't really necessary, but I used it to add a little sparkle to my magnets...I like sparkley things).

scrapbook paper, old sheet music or old book pages plus whatever embellishments you want to use to decorate (I kept it pretty simple. Once you get all of the magnets on the board you don't need a lot of my humble opinion.

paint pen and/or number rub ons

knick knacks for making your magnets i.e. dice, dominoes, miniture playing cards, miniture clothes pins, scrapbook tags, buttons, old drawer knobs etc.

craft magnets


To begin, drill holes in the top left and right hand corners of the cookie sheet (to accomodate the ribbon which you will use to hang the calendar).

After you've drilled your holes, it's time to start decorating the sheet. Make sure to flip your cookie sheet over so that the bottom is facing up. This is going to become the front of your magnet board.
Paint around the edges of the cookie sheet and just slightly onto the front of the board. It isn't necessary to paint the enter cookie sheet, as you will be covering the surface with scrapbook paper/sheet music. You can see here how it should look.

After the paint has dried, cover/decoupage the surface with paper using mod podge. I like to cover the entire surface with the "podge" then one by one place the paper. After each piece I paint a coat of "podge" over it.
Once you have the entire surface covered go over it with one more coat of "podge" and allow to dry.
Once dry apply embellishments and decorations. I kept my design pretty simple by adding only a border and page topper. This part is totally up to your discretion.
Here's how my sheet looked after paint, "podge" and embellishments.

Next, assemble your magnets. I used a combination of housefold items...dice, paper clamp, drawer knob, bottle cap, button as well as scrabook items to create my magnets. Really, anything goes. Just rummage through the junk drawer and see what you have lying around. I found a box of dominoes at the thrift store for fifty cents, so you may be able to pick up some cheap treasures there.
Once you have accumulated twenty-five items you need to number them. The nice thing about the dice and dominoes is that they are already numbered, so you don't have to bother with them. For everything else you can use a paint pen, or number rub ons. Once you have everything numbered, glue (hot glue or epoxy work) the craft magnets to the backs of all your knick knacks.

Thread some ribbon through the holes you drilled and tie the ends together into a bow. Here's what mine looked like when completed.
Voila! A super cheap and chic advent calendar that will be loved by adults and kids alike.

Oh, and the best part, you can use the backside (the concave side) to store your magnets as you remove them. I love's me some built in storage.

Not to shabby for a little time and a few bucks, eh?

Linking to:

DIY Club

The DIY Show Off

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

The Boardwalk Bragfest


  1. LOVE IT! This would be a fun craft to do with my kiddos : ) And yes, not all cookie sheets are created equal, wasup with that???? Hahaha


  2. This is adorable!! What a great idea and so charming!! Great idea~ stopping by from Funky Junks~ Nice to meet you! :)

  3. Oh you are so clever. What a fun and unique project. Excellent! Thank you so much for linking to the Boardwalk Bragfest! It's a marvelous "bragable".

  4. Oh this is totally perfect--I love it!!!!


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