How to create a personalized Advent calendar

Counting the days until December 25th can be a lot of fun, which is where an Advent calendar comes in handy. You can make the countdown even more interesting by customizing a calendar with your own images and effects.

To get started, download this Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 Advent calendar template and then follow the instructions provided in this article.

Add and format a background

To replace the house picture in the background of the sample Advent calendar with your own background image, take these steps:

  1. To add the background of a house scene, right-click the slide background, and click Format Background.
  2. In the Format Background dialog box, in the left pane click Fill, and in the right pane select Picture or texture fill.
  3. Under Insert from, click File, locate the picture that you want to use as the background, and then click Open.

 Note    You may download free images from Microsoft Office Online.

Replace the pictures behind each window with your own

To replace the pictures of elves and other characters in the windows or on the rooftop of the sample calendar with your own pictures, take these steps:

  1. On the Home tab, in the Editing group, click Select, and then click Selection Pane.

 Note    It is easier to select pictures from within the Selection and Visibility pane than directly on the slide.

  1. In the Selection and Visibility pane, click a reveal item (for example: "reveal_9").

 Note   Each reveal item is associated with a picture. In addition, each reveal item has a number and the number matches the button covering the picture. For example, the reveal_9 (picture) is located under button number 9.

  1. After you have selected the reveal item associated with the picture you want to replace, on the slide locate and right-click the picture, and then click Format Picture.
  2. In the Format Picture dialog box, in the left pane click Fill, and in the right pane select Picture or texture fill.
  3. Under Insert from, click File, locate the picture that you want to use in the calendar, and then click Open.

Customize the “day of the month” buttons and reveal shapes and images

If you'd like to change the buttons or shapes used for the countdown windows in the sample calendar, you need to create a "reveal" shape, fill it with a picture, and then create a "button" shape to display the day of the month on top of each picture. Here's how:

  1. On the Home tab, in the Drawing group, click Shapes.
  2. Select a “reveal” shape (for example, a rectangle to cover a window or a star for the sky area), and then click and drag to draw the shape you've selected on the slide.
  3. Fill each shape with pictures or clip art images using the steps provided in the section above.
  4. After you fill each shape, on the Selection and Visibility pane, double-click on the [object] to edit the text and type a new name (for example: “reveal_1”).
  5. On the Home tab, in the Drawing group, click Shapes.
  6. Select a “button” shape, and then click and drag to draw the shape on the slide.
  7. Right-click on the “button” shape and select Edit Text to type the number for that “button.”
  8. On the Selection and Visibility pane, double-click on the [object] to edit the text and type a new name (for example: “button_1”).
  9. Position the “button” shape on the slide so that it completely covers the “reveal” shape.

Add or recreate animation effects

  1. On the Animations tab, in the Animations group, click Custom Animation. The Custom Animation pane opens up.
  2. To assign an effect to the “button” (in this example, we use the Fade effect), select the button on the slide, and then in the Custom Animation pane, click Add Effect, point to Exit, and then click More Effects. In the Add Exit Effect dialog box, under Subtle, click Fade.
  3. Also in the Custom Animation pane, click the arrow to the right of the effect that you just added (fade exit effect) and select Timing.
  4. In the Fade dialog box, on the Timing tab, do the following:
    • Click the double arrows to the right of Triggers.
    • Click Start effect on click of.
    • Next to Start effect on click of, in the list select the “button” shape.
  5. On the slide, select the picture-filled (“reveal”) shape beneath the “button” shape, and in the Custom Animation pane, click Add Effect, point to Entrance, and click More Effects. In the Add Entrance Effect dialog box, under Subtle, click Fade.
  6. Also in the Custom Animation pane, select the effect that you just added (fade entrance effect), and then under Modify:Fade, in the Start list, select With Previous.
  7. Follow the same procedures with the remaining 24 “button” and “reveal” pairs of objects on the slide.

Use your new Advent calendar!

The hard part is over! Click the Slide Show button in the status bar to start the presentation. Each day, click on the day of month to see a new picture and enjoy your personalized countdown to December 25th.

 
 
Applies to:
PowerPoint 2007