Hey there! Today I get to share one of my Imagine projects over here on my own blog because we’re having a little hop with Xyron!
Before we get into how I made this any-occasion countdown calendar, I’d just like to thank Xyron, not only for sending us product to work with, but for sticking around (hah!) all these years. Both the little 150 Sticker Maker and 500 Create-a-Sticker that I used in this project I’ve had for something like 15 years and even with all that time and the evolution of their product line, the refills still work in these older “machines” and for that I am sincerely grateful.
Okay, enough gushing, let’s get to the project du jour!
Any-Occasion Countdown Calendar
Are you ever shocked when that one friend (everyone has one) comes into the office or posts on Facebook, etc. “only XX days ’til Christmas”? Even though they come around at the same time every year, I’m always a little gob-smacked at the small number of days before a holiday or other event (and how generally unprepared I might be for them). So I thought a countdown calendar would be an excellent thing to have on hand, and even better if it worked for any holiday or occasion coming up!
To make this countdown calendar I used (more or less in order of use):
- 1 Magnetic Dry-Erase Board
- Cardstock in a variety of colors
- Sizzix Big Shot Plus
- Darice Gears embossing folder
- Versamark pad
- Imagine White embossing powder
- Darice Heat Tool
- Memory Makers brad
- StazOn Studio Glaze in Claret
- Helmar SuperTac Glue
- Helmar ZapDots 1/2″ White Squares
- Sizzix Fun Serif lowercase dies, Funky Brush Sizlets dies
- Xyron Create-a-Sticker 500 (aka Max)
- Xyron 1.5″ Sticker Maker
- Spellbinders Nestabilities Grand Oval die
- Fun Foam
- Imagine Tear It! Tape
- Close to My Heart stamps (way too many to list. and probably no longer available since I bought them back in 2003 or so)
- Delicata Quartet
- Kaleidacolor stamp pad in Tahiti
- Memento ink in Elderberry
- Memento Luxe ink in Love Letter and Morocco
- Acrylic blocks
- Alcohol Markers (a mix of Copic and Spectrum Noir)
- Xyron Magnet Tape
Wow, that looks like a lot of stuff and explains why my work table looks like a tornado hit it.
So I could have sworn I had a clock-patterned embossing folder but apparently I talked myself out of that one (why?!) but I will not be dissuaded. I used the gears embossing folder and inked up one side with the clear Versamark pad. Once it was embossed I sprinkled it with white embossing powder and heat set it. My coverage wasn’t perfect here, but that’s okay, since I really just needed two “perfect” gears.
There are many things you can use a Xyron for, but hands-down my go-to use is for letters. With the Create-a-Sticker I will do a larger piece I can run through the die cutter and boom, intantly adhesived letters. No fussing with adhesive all over the place, just so super simple. This time I did two layers (one white, one red) through the Sizzix at once, vastly cutting down the cutting time.
As you can see, I fussy-cut the gears and added some strips of black cardstock for arms, then I secured them with a brad. The ends of each arm are decorated with a homemade “enamel” dot made from StazOn Studio Glaze. I made a bunch of these on a lark and have a little box of them on my work table for whenever I want one. Basically, you just squeeze a little puddle out onto your craft mat and let it dry.Done.Apply with a tiny dab of white glue.
My title is made by offseting the red letters just a hair behind the white, and sticking them down directly to the dry erase board. The gear-clocks are popped up with a couple of ZapDots a piece.
What you won’t see (because I apparently forgot to grab the camera) is my cutting out a scalloped oval from a piece of white cardstock and blue fun foam. Why blue? It’s what I had. These were put together and attached to the board with some Tear It! Tape.
Here’s where you get customized. I used a variety of stamps and inks, along with some hand lettering, to create little signs to go under the frame I made in the last step. These are just a few I’m starting with, but the beauty of this board is that you can make any occasion you need.
This magnet tape is really what inspired this project, let’s be honest. On the back of each occasion sign (which have been matted once or twice, each, for strength and prettiness) I placed a piece or two of the Xyron Magnet Tape. This is what makes the countdown any-occasion.
To finish my board, I cut tiny letters to decorate the bottom of the countdown frame and ran them through my little Xyron 150. Like I said, my favorite use for my Xyrons are letters and for tiny things the little X sticker maker is perfect.
Since my countdown calendar only takes up 2/3 of my dry erase board, I can use the remaining space to either hold some of the other signs, like in the first photo of the post, or I can use it as a to-do list for the upcoming event. Now I really have no excuse for holidays sneaking up on me.
What would your favorite countdown be?