Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Perpetual Calendar Tutorial

Every year I go on a search to find the perfect calendar to go with my home's decor. I can never find the perfect one, so I settle with one that is closest to what I'm wanting.  This year, I've decided to make my own, and this is how I did it...

What you need:

Photo frame with glass - mine is 11x17 ($8 at Wal-Mart)
Fabric - enough to cover the back of the frame (a fat quarter would have been more than enough for mine)
Fine-tip Sharpie
Fine-tip dry erase markers
Photo - I used an 8x10, then cut an inch off the top and bottom
Calendar template - I used Works and just made a table to the size I wanted.  I had 6 rows & 7 columns.  The top row cells measure .5 high by 1.5 wide.  Bottom 5 rows measure 2 high by 1.5 wide.  When printing, I had to click the "shrink to fit printable area" option.

Not pictured, but very helpful:
Double-sided tape

So, the first thing you need to do is take the back of your frame off, lay it down on your fabric and trace the frame's back. Then, cut out your piece of fabric.

Next, draw your blank calendar onto the fabric using your sharpie and calendar template. I taped the template to the back of my fabric so it wouldn't move on me. I was also able to see through my fabric well enough that I could pick out the outer four corners, and at least some of each line. First, I put a dot on each corner and using a ruler, I just played dot-to-dot. Then I put 2 dots along each line and again used my ruler to draw my inside lines.

Once you've gotten this far, take a couple of minutes and stare out your window. I hope you don't see the same thing I saw! Really, Mother Nature? More snow? At least wait till we get rid of the last 6 inches from the last snowfall?

Now it looks more like a calendar!  I didn't trust myself to be able to write out the days of the week and make it look nice, so I just used the initials.  If I were making one of these calendars as a gift, I would probably embroidered the lines - I may still go back and embroider over my marker at some point.

After you have your calendar drawn/embroidered/whatever, set the fabric aside for a couple of minutes.

Now you need the back of your frame and some double sided tape.   Put several pieces of tape around the edges of the inside of your back panel.  I also put a few strips in the middle.  This step isn't necessary, but it makes the assembly step easy peasy.

Almost done!  Now all you have to do is stick your picture on, securing it with a couple pieces of double stick tape (if you want to). 

Last steps!  Now, just pop the back piece with your photo and fabric back into the frame.  With your dry erase markers, you can write in the dates and the month & year and Voila!  You're done, and it's ready to hang!

If you decide to make one of these calendars, I'd love to see your creation!  Email me a picture or upload it to my flickr group!

Linking up here:
Lovely Crafty Home


  1. Heather, I have been behind on my blog reading...I totally missed your last few posts. Wow! I love this project! Got to see if I can attempt this. Super cute!

  2. Hi Kindra! Thanks for the love! This project went together really easily, and now I won't have to stress over finding the perfect calendar every year!

  3. Thanks for linking!! This is such a neat idea :)


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