Santa's Workshop Countdown to Christmas in July Chain

Posted by BreeM on Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Christmas Countdown Chain

A tutorial using Santa’s Workshop
Riley Blake Designs

Printer Friendly Instructions


Course Instructor: Bree McElroy from Distant Pickles (



Fabric Line: ' Santa’s Workshop ' by Doodlebug Designs for Riley Blake Designs


Course Materials:

20 total strips (3”xWidth of Fabric) or One Rollie Polie in Santa’s Workshop

1.5 yards 22”wide medium weight interfacing

1 package of hook & loop tape, sew-on (30” length)

Basic Sewing Supplies (rotary cutter, ruler and mat, machine with thread)

Embellishments such as Sew Together Ric-Rac , Trims, or Buttons (Optional)




Course Instructions:

¼” seam used throughout

Cut a total of 60 12”x3” rectangles from your width of fabric strips. You will be able to get 3 12” pieces from each 3” wide strip – and you will have about 6” of scrap.  If you’ve chosen to purchase a Rollie Pollie, this is great- saves on cutting! Your Rollie Pollie will be 2.5” wide, which still works great for this tutorial – you’ll just have skinnier countdown loops!

Keeping your strip folded on one end, cut as shown:


The folded end is on the right hand side, so you’ll cut 6” in from that fold to create one 12” strip, and then 12” over from that for two more 12” strips (Since they’re folded, you’ll get two from that one cut.) Everything to the left of the last cut is scrap – hang onto those, you can make a cute patchwork table topper or doll quilt with the leftover squares!

Cut your interfacing into 2.5” x11” rectangles.  If you’ve used a Rollie Pollie, cut the interfacing pieces at 2”x11”. Most medium-weight interfacings come in a 22” width on the bolt – this is perfect to fit 2 11” wide pieces side-by-side!


Cut your hook & loop tape into small squares. Mine is ¾” wide, so I cut pieces at ¾” to create perfect squares.




Fuse one piece of interfacing to the wrong side of one fabric rectangle, roughly centering.


Grab one pair of your hook & loop squares and separate. Place one part of this on the right side of the fused fabric, about 1” in from a short side. Stitch into place – I use a square and go around the perimeter of the piece.


Grab another fabric rectangle, without interfacing, and place the other half of your hook&loop square pair about 1” in from the edge and stitch into place.


Place your two fabric rectangles (one with fusing, one without, both with hook & loop squares sewn!) right sides together. Make sure your hook &loop dots are on opposite sides of the rectangles, not touching each other!


Stitch around three sides of rectangle, leaving one short side open for turning.


Snip the corners, and turn right side out.


(I find a ruler to be very helpful in turning this and poking out the corners!)



 Fold in the open end, press, and top stitch around the perimeter.



Repeat for 29 other pairs until all of your supplies are used up. This makes a total of 30 loops. Interconnect to form a countdown chain, and take one loop off per day as you approach the big day!


Optional embellishments can be added to jazz up each strip and individualize them! Want to number your pieces? Applique a small number on each fused piece prior to assembling the chain piece! Want a little extra jazz? Insert a Sew Together Ric Rac piece in your seams as you join the two pieces together to create a unique border. Add buttons or trims as desired to make all of your chain pieces different! Use a funky non-holiday line like Chevron for a countdown that can be reused for any holiday or occasion! These can really be individualized for any event – but I think the Santa’s Workshop Christmas Countdown is going to be our household favorite!




Category: Home Decor


  1. Super cute. And fairly easy to make - I just need a little more practice.
    by Heidi B
    November 13th, 2012 at 5:06 p.m.

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