We love the idea of making your own advent calendar. We've found some free fabric advent calendar sewing patterns for you to make (there's still time!) The advent calendars on the high street are so uninspiring and expensive for what they really contain, moulded plastic, chocolates...why pay for that!

Make yourself and your family an heirloom advent calendar and fill the calendar each year with some treats that are actually tasty instead.  

With DIY advent calendars (we like the type you have to sew best!), you can also steer clear of chocolate and sweets if you'd rather not start the day with chocolate (anyone?). Fill with little promises, little toys, mini-liqueurs (for adults - maybe open that in the evening!) or even little found objects that might interest the kids and spark conversations like pebbles, seed heads or pine cones - you choose.

It doesn't have to be expensive to be meaningful and fun. we'd love you to comment with your ideas for filling handmade advent calendars.  We think that it's always best to try and make your calendar unique, so take time over fabric choices and think about where it will hang and what you want to fill it with so you can adapt the size of the calendar, the little pockets for the gifts and work out the fixings to hang it in your home.

Advent Calendar Garland Ideas

fabric advent calendar pattern

Sew up cute little envelopes with this pattern over on the Hobbycraft website

This cute hanging stocking advent calendar pattern is from Issue 33 of Love Sewing, you just need an old frame, which makes it really practical as it can be propped up anywhere and those 24 stockings will sew up in no time at all - you can download the free pattern templates on our website now - Free Advent Calendar Stocking Templates

advent bunting pattern

This advent bunting idea is really cute - to make it more Christmassy you could pick up one of those fat quarter packs of Christmassy fabric to make it with. Find the free advent bunting pattern on the Happy Zombie blog

stocking advent calendar sewing pattern

You can also download this free advent calendar pattern to make cute little stockings to hang as a garland with a quilt backing over on Craftsy.

Fabric advent calendars with pockets

fabric advent calendar tutorial

You can find the full step by step tutorial to make this cute fabric advent calendar - the calendar has been designed and made by Molly Flanders

This pretty fabric advent calendar is a classic design with pockets for each of the treats - Jera from Quilting in the Rain has added little chalk labels on mini clips which look really contemporary.

This must have taken a while - from 1 button through to 24 little mother of pearl buttons stitched onto this fabric advent calendar - it's a really simply played down design if you're not all about the razzmatazzat Christmas. See more at Miss Gaioia

This cute Calendar has pockets big enough for little notes where you can add little promises - like 'bake cookies with Mummy' or 'Rent a Family Film tonight' - you'll be choosing the days, so you can decide what suits your schedule for the promises. See more and a written tutorial over on Smiles and Wishes blog

This has to be our favourite! A Father christmasto sew up and hang on a wall or door that you can use every year and fill with lovely treats. Find this advent calendar tutorial over on Craft Gossip by Anne Weaver