12 Days of Christmas Embroidery Hoops Surprise

A while back I had an idea to make embroidered Christmas ornament hoops that I could display on my wall.  Then that idea morphed into a sort of advent calendar project where I made a hoop for each day of December and behind each hoop there would be a surprise or activity for the day.  But then I realized that there was no way on earth I was going to be able to embroider 25 hoops.  So the idea morphed into more of a 12 Days of Christmas Project…

Behind each hoop is a little note that my husband and I wrote with suggestions of festive activities for that day.  They can be simple, like treating ourselves to eggnog lattes, to more complicated, like going out ice skating.  But whatever the activity may be, I just love that this project serves as a daily reminder for us to slow down and appreciate the holiday season – It’s so easy to caught up with Christmas craziness!  

To make your own hoops, all you need is some Christmas-themed fabric (I used linen hand towels that I purchased from Crate & Barrel) embroidery floss in different colors, 12 embroidery hoops and needle (mine bought from Sublime Stitching) a disappearing ink pen, paper, scissors and a bit of imagination. 

Once you have fabric on all 12 hoops you can either use holiday embroidery patterns or hand draw your own using your disappearing ink pen.  I chose the latter, which resulted in less than perfect designs, but I just love that they all look completely unique and truly handmade!  I drew a few classic holiday items, like mistletoe and a candy cane, but also kept some hoops simple with a single phrase or geometric design to mimic an ugly holiday sweater. 
Once you’ve embroidered all 12 hoops with different designs it’s time to add your 12 daily tasks.  Trace your hoop onto plain paper, cut it out and write your activity on the sheet.  Carefully place the note on the inside of the embroidered hoop.  It should just rest snugly against the hoop frame.  This also hides any unsightly embroidering mistakes! 😉

Then decide on an arrangement.  Start by laying out all your hoops on the floor and move until you find an arrangement you like…I chose to arrange mine in a Christmas tree shape.  I then used pushpins to hang the complete arrangement above our bed.  Now every morning when we wake up, we can uncover a new holiday activity, which is a fabulous way to start the day!

And there you have it!  An easy, festive and unusual holiday DIY that’s sure to help you appreciate this most wonderful time of the year!  

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