Linda Feldman from CraftApple is back for Part 2 of our Advent Calendar Sew-Along. Today Linda shows you how to assemble the front of the advent calendar. Join in every Wednesday this month, and add your progress photos to our In A Pear Tree Advent Calendar Sew-Along Flickr group for a chance to win prizes just for sewing along!

Find a supply list, cutting instructions and ideas for the Advent windows in Part 1.

Post #2 Goal: Assemble Front of Advent Calendar

*Hint: When fusing fabric to fabric with fusible webbing, it is best to press without sliding the iron across the fabric. Sliding the iron can cause the fabric to stretch and create wrinkles which are difficult to remove. Instead, press for the appropriate time, then move the iron to an adjacent spot and continue to press until all the fabric is fused.

1. Attach Trunk
Spread out background piece, with liner piece on bottom, on ironing board. Center trunk piece on background fabric 3 ½” from the bottom edge as shown. Fuse trunk to background fabric. Topstitch around trunk using a â…›”seam allowance, securing it to the background.

2. Attach Circle
Center tree circle piece on background fabric, 5” from the top edge as shown. Circle should overlap trunk ~ ½”. Fuse circle piece onto background. Topstitch around tree circle using a â…›” seam allowance, securing it to the background.

3. Attach Large Leaves
Find center of circle and mark the spot by placing a button there. Arrange the 16 large leaves around the outside of the circle. Using the button as a guide, aim the tips of the leaves toward the button, spacing them evenly as shown. Fuse leaves into place.

4. Attach Circle Pears and Small Leaves
Arrange 4 pears and 4 small leaves on tree circle as shown, using the button as a guide for placement. Make sure there is 1” clearance between the edge of the circle and the pears. Remove button. Fuse pieces into place. Topstitch around large leaves, pears and small leaves using a â…›” seam allowance, securing it to the background.

5. Attach Ground Pears
Arrange pears on ground as shown. Make sure to allow enough room at the top of each pear for a button. Fuse pieces into place. Topstitch around pears using a â…›” seam allowance, securing it to the background.

6. Topstitch Background
Stitch on background, outside of leaves and pears. I used free-motion stitching (see tutorial here), however any stitching around the areas where the flaps will open will make this advent calendar more durable.

Next Week: We’ll make the leaf and pear openings.

Don’t forget!: Post progress photos in the In A Pear Tree Advent Calendar Sew-Along Flickr group each week for a chance to win:

  • a copy of Countdown Calendars, to which Linda was a contributor (as were Monica and Elizabeth!)
  • a $20 gift certificate to Sew,Mama,Sew!
  • 3 CraftApple sewing patterns of your choice

We want to see your progress! Every photo enters you to win.

Comment today for your chance to win a new sewing book! We’ll select two winners from the comments each week. This week YOU can win Quilt a Gift for Little Ones or Inspired to Sew: 15 Pretty Projects, Sewing Secrets, Colorful Collage. For book details see this post, and don’t forget to add your progress photos to our Sew-Along Flickr Pools for more chances to WIN!