DIY Advent Calendar

Is it too early for Christmas posts?! I think not, it’s past Bonfire Night so we can officially be excited for Christmas! I personally have been planning presents since late September because I like to have everything out the way and sorted so by December, I can truly soak up the festive-ness without worrying about presents that still need to be bought and wrapped!

I’ve seen similar ideas on Pinterest and craft magazines and always wanted to make a personalised advent calendar as a gift but never been organised enough. This year I buckled down and made a list of ideas for each pocket and how I could put it together and I’m quite pleased with the results so thought I’d share it with you! Maybe it could be an idea for next Christmas or you could throw one together in the next couple of weeks before Advent begins!

advent calendar (17)

I started by gathering crafty items to form the skeleton of the advent calendar, I decided I would hang pockets for each day from a candy-cane design twine using little pegs for each one. This way it feels a bit more professional and can be reused for Christmas’ to come as either an advent calendar again or to hang Christmas cards onto. All of these parts making up the actual display came from Ebay! I searched for paper sweetie bags and chose the gold candy stripe design to be used as the pockets and red mini pegs as I thought these would be nice Christmassy colours. I’d found brown blank round tags so I could then write numbers on for each day and I also stamped a gold snowflake on the back each for an added festive vibe! (I would probably recommend buying Christmas tags to save a lot of time and effort which I spent stamping 50 tags!) Overall, these were all pretty cheap; a way to save a bit of money could be to use paperclips instead of mini pegs.

advent calendar (5) advent calendar (8) advent calendar (9)

Now it’s time to add the good bits – presents! Obviously this can be as expensive or cheap as you like but the presents have to be fairly small to fit in the paper bags. I tried to alternate days of chocolate/sweets and actual presents, most of the gifts were between ¬£1-2. I really wanted to portray a theme of making the gift-receiver feel super cosy, pampered and excited for the Christmas season. My advent calendars were for women my age but can easily be adapted to a man, child, even a pet! Some of the gifts I included were: face masks, socks, hot chocolate sachets, foot cream, lip balm, cookie cutters with a handwritten note for a gingerbread man recipe, Christmas tree decorations.

To add a nice personal touch and to spread out the pricier gifts, I added notes recommending my favourite Christmas films and TV episodes to watch, and I had other ideas to do highlights of our year with photographs of times we’d spent together that year or photos from past Christmases spent together but never got around to it – oops!

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And here is the finished result! As I felt the pegs wouldn’t hold a lot of weight I decided to spread the pockets across three separate pieces of twine overlapping them slightly as I pegged them. I tied loops at the end of each piece of twine also, with the idea that it can be hung up on a wall on display.

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Another nice way I thought, could be to turn the labels over as each day is opened so the progress of Advent can be seen!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and perhaps it’s inspired you to create a more crafty and personal Christmas pressnt for your loved ones this year!

Love, Helen x

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