string of lights advent calendar pattern

December 12th, 2008

Here it is, the string of lights advent calendar tutorial (and pattern!). I made the pdf pattern file all by myself for the first time, so if you have problems with it just email me and I’ll try to fix it. Otherwise, hurry up! because advent is almost over!


green wool felt
multi-color felt scraps
60 feet green yarn
green embroidery thread
lightweight treats (gum balls, dum dums, love notes, tiny ornaments)


download here


Cut the yarn into six equal pieces (10 feet each or 120 inches each or about 3 meters each). Take three pieces and braid them together. This is more difficult then it sounds, but if you roll up the slack and just work with a little yarn at a time it’s much easier. Braid the other three together the same way. Then twist the two braids together and knot the ends.  It will stay twisted when you sew the lights to it.

Cut out 25 (or 24 or however many lights you want) circles and rectangles. Create the socket by sewing a blanket stitch to the edge of rectangle and the circle attaching them to each other.  If the rectangle is slightly longer than the circumference of the circle clip it to fit and continue sewing the ends of the rectangle together. Sew the sockets onto the cord–one every three inches.

Cut out the light bulb pattern piece. To sew the lights up faster you can fold your colored felt over and simply trace the pattern onto it with a marker (permanent or not it doesn’t matter) then sew the two pieces together staying inside the lines.  To be safe test the first light to see if it fits: sew and turn out, put a treat or two inside, then fit it inside the socket and see if it stays when it’s hanging upside down. If it slips out, just make the lights slightly bigger.  If you’d rather use the lights for decoration and not for treats you can stuff the light bulbs lightly and sew them onto the socket.

I didn’t really finish the ends of the cord (I just tied a knot on both ends).  But it would be sweet to make a little plug out of felt to hide the knot. To do this cut out four extra “socket bottom” circles and two extra rectangles.  Cut a slit in the middle of one of the circles and insert your knot, then attach the rectangle, just like you did for all the sockets, and attach the other circle to the other side–making a  round (European style) plug. You can even make some prongs out of felt to complete the look.

download the pattern here.

17 Responses to string of lights advent calendar pattern

  1. sarah says:

    that is really awesome! definitely going on my list for next year.

  2. Louise says:

    oh thank u, thank u!
    I love this! Maybe I will start this in January and get 2 bulbs made a month…just in time for christmas 2009!

  3. Kitty says:

    This is just lovely, and that is a great idea Louise!

  4. Sharon says:

    I enjoy your website and I have included a link to your English Toffee from my new website.
    I saw how you have added linking to a PDF file and I would like to know how you learned to do that.
    Appreciate your help.

  5. What a nice website! With so many great ideas!
    Mara Zeitspieler

  6. Stacie says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I can’t wait to get started!

  7. dana says:

    thank you for posting a tutorial. I really LOVE this idea and how it turned out. Adorable.

  8. Rachel says:

    Thanks SO much for sharing this! This was one of my favorite advents this year, I just love it! I’ll be linking.

  9. Elizabeth says:

    I saw your string of lights on Craftzine first and was sooooo hoping the link would link me to your directions. I was ecstatic when I saw your string of lights again on One Pretty Thing and this time with the pattern! This is going on my sidebar for next year. I’m a beginner craft person, so I’m thinking if I start these in January I’ll be finished by next Christmas. :-)

  10. Arien says:

    Looks very cute. Thank you for the pattern:)

  11. Deb says:

    I just found your tutorial, and wanted to thank you so much for doing this. I’m going to start making this now for next Christmas = }

  12. Sandra says:

    Love this! I’m putting together my to-do list for the holidays this year (trying to get a head start) & this will definitely top the queue!! Thanks so much–it’s just darling!

  13. Taresa says:

    love your blog! Thanks for the tutorial :)

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  15. Laura says:

    This is great. Thank you for the idea! You have a great blog too!

  16. Amanda says:

    i think you mean 10 ft not 10 yds and also 60ft not 60yds of yarn

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