I've made these calendars as gifts many times. The sample here is for one of the owners of the decorator's firm I subcontract with, which would explain the cheetah/pink combo...
- 12" x 12" scrapbook page frame with glass (I got mine at Michael's when they were on sale for $5 - they're regularly $10)
- 12" x 12" paper or fabric of choice for backgrounds
- Enough paper to cut the following: 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" title block, 2 1/4" X 12" embellishment strip, 35 - 1 3/8" x 1 1/2" curly labels or rectangles, and seven small flowers
- Contrasting paper to mat title block
- Alphabet stamps (I used Amore from Close to My Heart), label outline stamp (optional - I used Cute and Curly from Stampin'Up!)
- Label punch (I used the Curly Label punch from Stampn'Up!)
- Border punch (I used a Martha Stewart one)
- Flower punch (I used one of the flowers in Stampin'Up!'s Boho Blossoms punch)
- 12" ribbon
- Desired embellishments
- Tape runner
- Redline tape
The picture above shows the labels all stamped and punched, the title block cut and matted, the headers for each day of the week stamped and cut, and a couple of strips border-punched. You will notice that the border-punched pieces are not 12" long. The papers I used came from a 6" x 6" pad, and the ends will be covered with the title block, so it's okay to piece the strip. I prepare all my pieces like this before I start actually putting the calendar together. I find it's easier to get the cutting and stamping mess out of the way before I add to the pile with the frame and all. I used the "Thank You" stamp from Stampin'Up!'s Cute and Curly set, along with the corresponding Curly Label punch (yes, I cut the "thank you" off the stamp so I wouldn't have to mask it - it fits back in exactly where the hole is, so I can use it either way). If you don't have a label stamp and punch, you could just cut rectangles and ink the edges - I've done that on previous calendars, and it looks great, too. I punched this flower:
Then I cut off the top and bottom petals to make the shape I ended up with:
I stamped the letters first ("S" for Sunday, "M" for Monday, etc.) before I trimmed the flower, so I could see if I needed to make shallower cuts. After you punch the borders on your strip(s), it/they will probably be 1 3/4" wide. Now that you have all your pieces ready, we can proceed:
Remove the back from your frame and center it on fabric of choice, making sure that the right side is down towards your work surface, and the wrong side is facing you. Apply a strip of redline tape to the top and bottom edge. Remove the liner and wrap fabric to the back and stick it down well. If you're using 12" x 12" paper, skip this step entirely, as it will fit into the frame as is.
Repeat for the two sides. Flip it over and it looks like this (at least, it does if you use cheetah...)
The rest of the construction was done just using a tape runner. First, adhere your punched strip(s) 5/8" down from the top edge, and making the ends even with the side edges - the gap in the middle is okay, if you have one, it will be covered later:
Now adhere your ribbon down the center of the strip, wrapping the ends to the back and securing them. Also glue down the title block in the very center. NOTE: I used pop dots on the first one to get some dimension going, but when you put it in the frame, the glass presses it and makes it funky, so don't bother...
Now take all 35 of your labels/rectangles and arrange them roughly how you want them. You will need five rows of seven:
I like to "stack" the columns, so I don't forget what went where, but I get them out of my way.
Next we need to sort out spacing to get everything nice and even. The easiest way I've found to do this is to first adhere the first and last label in the bottom row, 1/2" up from the bottom edge, and approximately 1/2" in from the edge (it'll be just a titch over 1/2", because the backing is slightly over 12" - just make sure it's even on both sides). Also adhere the label in the center, making sure that it actually is dead center.
Fill in the row with the remaining labels. You can pretty much just eyeball the spacing side to side between the ones you've already adhered, but make sure you keep the 1/2" spacing from the bottom edge.
Next, go up each side, keeping the labels the same slightly-more-than-1/2" distance from the side edges, and about 1/8" between them as you go up.
Also do the center column the same way, making sure you're staying straight up the center, then fill in each row with the remaining labels.
Add the "days of the week" headers above their proper column, then bling it up any way you'd like to! I used some of the "bangle bling" I scored a few weeks ago, and some K & Co self-adhesive gems.
Here's a closeup for (hopefully) a better view:
Now just put it in the frame, and you're done!
The glass is what makes it a dry-erase calendar - you can just write on the glass with a dry-erase marker, and it'll wipe right off! The title block is where you write the month (I'm sure you figured that out already, but just in case...)
Here are some pics of others that I've made (most are scans from before I got a camera, so part of the calendar got lopped off - use your imagination to fill it in...):
The one above has a dry-erase marker wrapped with pretty paper and attached to the frame with a ribbon:
Originally published March 1, 2008