Tuesday, November 24, 2009

christmas countdown blocks

I can't believe November is almost over! My kids have been asking every day how many days until Christmas. They've been asking since Halloween, so I made some countdown blocks to stop all those questions! These are easy and fun to make, and would make a great gift!



Christmas Countdown Blocks Tutorial

What you'll need:

*2 wooden blocks (ours were 2"x2", but 4"x4" would be a great size for this project)
*Sandpaper (if needed to smooth out block)
*Acrylic paint
*Foam brush
*Patterned paper
*Distressing ink (totally optional)
*Mod Podge or other decoupage medium
*Another foam brush
*Number stickers or die cuts in a size that will fit on your block (we used the Slice to cut ours). You could use paper or vinyl. Or a Sharpie marker to write them on.

1. Sand and paint your blocks. Allow to dry thoroughly.

2. Cut your paper down to a size that is just smaller than your block. Ours was about 1 and 7/8". We cut 6 different papers so each side of the block was a different pattern. We used paper from the Eskimo Kisses 6x6 pad from Basic Grey. These paper pads are a great way to go because the designs are shrunk down from their original 12x12 size so you can see more of them on the little blocks.


3. Apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to one side of the block. Smooth paper on block, ensuring there are no air bubbles. Continue covering all sides of both blocks. Allow to dry.


4. This is optional, but we like to sand the edges of the paper to make them "one" with the block. Use a downward motion going away from the paper's edge to avoid tearing the paper.


5. If you're die-cutting your numbers, cut them to fit your blocks. Ours were 1.5" high. Be sure to use a 6 that can be flipped and used as a 9, too. Cut the following letters, or get these stickers out:
*Block 1 - 0,1,2,3,4,5
*Block 2 - 0,1,2,6,7,8



6. Adhere your letters to the blocks--use more Mod Podge if you die cut paper letters like we did.


Look at all the cute paper combinations that come out of this Eskimo Kisses paper!



7. I haven't done this yet, but you can also apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to the entire block to seal it. I would probably recommend it, but I'm the slightest bit worried about it warping the paper. Amy, any thoughts?

8. On December 1 (or would it be November 30?), put your blocks out with 2 and 5 facing out. Then each day turn the blocks to count down one day until Christmas! My kids are so excited to turn the numbers each day they can hardly stand it.


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35 Comments

35 Responses to “christmas countdown blocks”

Trisha said...

I love this! I am in the middle of making alphabet wooden blocks for Christmas gifts... I am so doing this too! Thank you so much!

The Lucas family said...

I make and sell blocks like this but with children names on them and I put a layer of mod podge on the outside to seal the paper. If it is glued down enough it won't warp the paper at all. I then spray krylon crystal clear on the outside of that so the blocks won't stick if stacked.

http://www.lettersbylee.etsy.com

Keriann said...

What a cute idea! I've been looking for a reason to use that paper collection too since it doesn't really match y Christmas decor....this will be perfect!

As for the mod podge...DO IT!!! I would recommend it to everyone! I just about ALWAYS mod podge over my projects to seal them. It makes them WAY easier to dust off too!! It won't hurt the paper at all...that's what mod podge was made for!

Beckie said...

Adorable! I need me some of those :) Thanks for sharing!

Lift Up Your Hearts said...

So TOTALLY doing this! Thank you for the awesome idea!!

Mod Podge Amy said...

Cuuute! Okay, I need to repost this. . .

Jeanette said...

Yay, I think I am going to make these too, thanks for the tutorial!

Neuffj said...

Oh my gosh, these are great! I am all over this!

Kari @ Ucreate said...

SUPER CUTE!!

Anonymous said...

Where did you get your die cutter? And what brand is it? Do tell!

Renee

Catherine Hansen Peart said...

I love this idea and yep, definitely do the Mod Podge. I am glad I picked up that tip about the Krylon Crystal Clear too - thanks Lee!!

Mel said...

These are so cute, and I love that you use a Slice too!

Tess said...

Yhese are awesome and I love how easy your tutorials are to follow. Love your chosen colors too.

Forsythe said...

I made a Halloween and Chritmas set a few months ago, I cut a large fence post with a chop saw and also made a base for them to sit on. I used vinyl numbers.

Forsythe said...

Here is the link to my blog where I put some photos up, just scroll down.
http://forsythes.blogspot.com/2009/10/randomness.html

Donna VW said...

What a great idea - thanks!

Amy said...

of ALL the one's I've seen this one is the easiest and super cute! thanks!

Mod Podge Amy said...

Oh! And in re: the wrinkle question - if you let the blocks dry before you completely seal with Mod Podge (which you did), you shouldn't get wrinkles. The biggest wrinkle cause is when people Mod Podge something down and then Mod Podge right over the top. There needs to be about 20 minutes in between those two steps.

Lena said...

I good friend made me a set of these using pictures of me and my husband. They turned out great, and they are a great gift idea!

Tracy said...

This is a darling idea. I must convince husband to cut down some wood into blocks. Your numbers looks great, I a impressed with that die cutting system.

MissesStitches said...

I love this idea! I did something similar with photos that you can see on my blog entry dated September 27th. I like how you carefully sanded the edges of the paper to make them "blend." I did use several layers of ModPodge on my blocks and they turned out fine.

Lindsay said...

Hey there these are very cute. I linked you to my craft blog if that is ok. My blog is http://www.craftychicmommy.blogspot.com/ I was doing a post on Christmas countdown projects where I included my own along with some other people's I really liked, including yours.

Katherine said...

I just made my own blocks...YEAH!! I will post a pic on my blog tomorrow, and share the link with ya when I do!

Aubrey said...

SO CUTE!!! Thanks for posting the tutorial, this will now be on my list of things to do this year!

Creative Craft Ideas said...

Too Cute! And so easy. LOVE LOVE LOVE them!

Anne

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Desiree' said...

Thanks for the amazing tutorial, I loved it!

Here is a picture of how my blocks turned out

http://cozihome.blogspot.com/2010/10/modpodge-addiction.html

Cities Chick said...

I love countdown blocks! I made a set and I also linked to yours:
http://www.squidoo.com/christmas-countdown-blocks
I love your idea about sanding the edges of the paper, I will try that next time!

Kimmy said...

I made these and linked you to my blog... love how they turned out! Thank you for spreading the joy! ~ kimmy

myterm said...

This tutorial is a detailed guide in coloring a design to Christmas countdown blocks.

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mythesis said...

The christmas countdown blocks are some thing nice to watch and I think this is really good to have such information about them because it can be done good for its knowledge and for making also.

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Danielle said...

this is awesome, i've been looking for something like this - thanks for all the tips!

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