Advent Calendar Ideas

The holidays are upon us and I’m in full preparation mode, are you?  I try to get a jump start on a some of the holiday decor before Thanksgiving so it doesn’t feel so rushed in December. 

One of the ways to count down to Christmas is with an advent calendar, and it’s especially fun if you’ve got kids at home.  Kids love the surprise of small treats while they anxiously await the arrival of Santa.  Advent calendars can be simple or ones that you create with a few hours of crafting.  To inspire, here are a few fun ideas from the Better Homes & Gardens gallery to consider if you plan to incorporate the advent calendar tradition in your family’s holiday festivities. 

Adhere tins topped with numbers to a wreath form with glued magnets and fill them with treats for a daily sweet surprise. 

advent wreath bhg


Boxes of all shapes and sizes can be embellished and numbered as mini gifts are unwrapped and enjoyed leading up to Christmas Day. 

decorated boxes for advent bhg


Patterned paper bags filled with treats and suspended from rope strung across a window are a fun way to brighten your kitchen or family room and keep the tradition front and center. 

paper bag advent


A wooden box with doors can be painted with each door labeled with a number – pull it out every year and hang it on the wall to increase the holiday excitement around the house! 

wood cabinet advent bhg


Use stocking caps (or mini mittens!) suspended in a row to hide trinkets or sweets in the countdown to Christmas. 

stocking cap advent bhg


Small colorful envelopes numbered for each day make perfect hiding spots for loving notes or sweet little trinkets.  

envelope advent bhg


If you’re less inclined to fill 24 boxes, print clues on pieces of paper where other prizes may hide around the house with 12 envelopes attached to a bulletin board. 

condensed advent bhg

Do you celebrate the season of Advent with a calendar or other traditions? Do share!



6 Responses to “ Advent Calendar Ideas ”

  1. I celebrate Advent with a Jesse Tree! I make felt sets of ornaments.

  2. A couple of ideas we did with our kids were these: One year every night we read a chapter of a Christmas story (ours was a Muppets version specifically printed for this purpose.) Other years we had a tall candle with marks painted on it. We would like the candle and sit around the table reading a story about Jesus from the Bible. Then we would sing a hymn or Christmas song and have hot chocolate. When the candle had burned down to the next mark, we would blow it out.

  3. A few years ago I made the felt advent birds from Skip to My Lou and this year I ordered a photo, that I added a caption over, and had Shutterfly make it into a 200 piece puzzle. I divided the pieces among the 25 birds and the children are daily putting the puzzle together in order to read the caption and discover their treat for the season. It was easy to do and builds suspense up to the holiday.

  4. Anyone know where to find a “wooden box with doors??” I have never seen a plain one for sale anywhere.

  5. IKEA has paintable wooden boxes with drawers. Self-assemble and there aren’t exactly 24 drawers if I remember. Otherwise I suggest antique stores?

  6. Hi there,

    Love what your selection, I definitely feel inspired to make one of these next year. I hope you don’t mind but I’ve shared a link on my blog back to this page, as I thought it was such a fab idea. If you don’t want to be featured just let me know and I can take it down :)

    Happy holidays!

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