Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Halloween Advent Calendar

Inspiration

Last year I made an advent calendar for Christmas.  Since then I have been looking for Halloween advent calendars.  I found these two that were pretty cool.

I loved that they were drawers so you could put little treats or toys in them, but I didn't like the fact that they didn't have the right number of drawers.  October 25th != Halloween.  And even *if* I liked these calendars well enough to buy them, they weren't for sale.  Apparently there are other people out there with nothing better to do than to make their own Halloween advent calendars.  I was on my own.....well sort of.

Supplies

The first step was to brainstorm with my mom on how I would actually accomplish this project.  She suggested a nuts and bolts organizer.  I was skeptical.  I was going for a wooden look.  I'm not big on cheap plastic.  But I decided to look anyway.  Do you know how hard it is to find an organizer with the right number of drawers?.....Hard.  Obviously I wasn't going to find one with 31 drawers.  But since the kids would be getting treats and tricks by other means on the 31st, I figured 30 would suffice.  I found this one on Amazon.

After the organizer was delivered, I spent some more time brainstorming.  I turned the drawers around so the fronts would be flat.  I then did some more searching online and found these tiny wooden rectangles that were exactly the same size as the drawer fronts.  I also bought little wooden spools to use for the handles.  My other supplies were flat black spray paint, Halloween scrapbook paper and embellishments, 1/4 in wood for sides of box, wood trim for front of box, and metal box feet found at my local Michael's.






Ready, Break!

I've mentioned before that, for me, crafting is much more fun as a team sport.  This project was no exception.  My mom helped me a ton on getting the drawer fronts finished and my dad was in charge of building the wood surround for the box as well as helping me with other tactical issues.  The team started out by giving everything a shot of flat black paint. 
After the box was painted, dad started on building the surround....um...Dad, I don't think that clamp is big enough.  Seriously. LOL.  While he was working on that, Mom and I worked on picking out the scrapbook paper to use on the fronts of the wooden rectangles.  We cut the papers to size and glued them on the front.
Once they were dry, I distressed them with some distress ink and mod podged them. We used all kinds of numbers and embellishments to make the drawers look old and random.  After all the embellishments were on, I glued the painted spools on using craft glue.


Meanwhile, in the garage, Dad finished building the box surround.  We used putty to fill in any gaps and I sanded it to a smooth finish.  Then I gave it a coat of the same black spray paint.  I also mod podged the whole box to make it the same finish as the drawer faces.

After the paint had dried, I glued each of the drawer faces onto the drawers themselves using a hot glue gun.  Back in the garage, dad drilled holes through the wood and plastic using the spool center holes as guides.  We then took flathead nails, pushed them through the holes and cut off the ends with a pair of dikes, putting a spot of hot glue on the end just for good measure.

Finishing Up

I wanted a little something to put on top of the box so I picked up a wooden 31 and bat from the Wood Connection and painted and mod podged more Halloween paper on them.  I found the Halloween sign at Hobby Lobby and distressed it a little so it would go a little bit better with the rest of the box.  I attached the metal box feet to the bottom of the box and voila!  She was done!

I cannot tell you how happy I am with how this turned out.  It is so much better than I thought it would be. The kids love it too. After Izzypop opened today's drawer and found a little mini chocolate bar, she told me she likes it "WAY" better than the Christmas advent calendar which coincidentally does not involve treats. ;)
Thank you so much, Mom and Dad, for all your help on this. I love love love it and can't wait to enjoy it for years and years to come!

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