Holiday DIY: How to make a custom advent calendar
Create 24 days of holiday magic
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The holiday season is a magical time with visits from Santa and familiar elves. If you love the fun and surprise that holiday traditions bring, you’re likely a big fan of advent calendars. The fun of an advent calendar starts on Dec. 1 with 24 special surprises, counting down the days until Christmas. Plus, it’s surprisingly easy to learn how to make an advent calendar yourself.
What is an advent calendar?
Originating from German and Lutheran traditions, the first advent calendars would reveal verses or pieces of the nativity story leading up to Christmas. These days, contemporary advent calendars are still used to celebrate Christmas but have devolved into pre-made calendars full of goodies.
There’s an advent calendar for just about everyone from adults to kids.
You can seek out a pre-built advent calendar that are decorative and festive. These sets look like mini cabinets with a series of 24 drawers to fill with custom goodies and feature designs of winter villages. Some even include LED lights for extra Christmas magic. The best part? You can reuse these sets for years to come.
This refillable advent calendar from Anthropologie not only lights up but will play ‘Deck the Halls’ to bring cheer to your holiday home.
If store-bought is not your thing, advent calendars are easy to make and you can fill it with gifts you or your loved one are sure to cherish.
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How to make an advent calendar
When it comes to how to make an advent calendar there are two things to consider: How to store your 24 gifts and choosing the gifts.
At a very basic level, all you need are 24 boxes, bags or a pre-built drawers to create your advent calendar. Any small gift box like these ones from Amazon are perfect for building your advent calendar and filling with small gifts and trinkets. Once you have all of your boxes, label them 1 through 24. A set of paint markers, like these Christmas Sharpies, will come in handy for decorating your boxes to add some real flair.
You don’t have to be a master crafter to create a special advent calendar display. In fact, those crafters have done a lot of the hard work for you, offering up advent calendars you can print or get shipped to you.
On Etsy, OhHelloMaker created a PDF of DIY Christmas Houses for you to print and make at home.
What to put in your advent calendar
Once you’ve secured your advent calendar setup, it’s time to fill it up. This is the fun part because you can customize it to suit the preferences of your giftee. Pick a theme (think 24 days of chocolate or nail polish) or choose a variety of little toys. Advent calendars are a joy for kids and adults alike so you can make one for anybody.
Here are some advent calendar gifts ideas.
Advent calendar gift ideas for kids:
Advent calendar gift ideas for adults
- Chocolate bars
- K-Cups or Nespresso pods
- Alcohol minis
- Fancy votive candles
- Make-up minis
- Gift cards
- Worry stones
- Airpods case
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