Nothing builds the excitement to Christmas like Advent Calendars! Here are 30 unique and beautiful DIY advent calendars that you can make to help maximize the meaning and the enjoyment of the Christmas season! (Plus, 10 you can buy if DIY isn’t your thing!)
Updated: October 14, 2019
DIY Advent Calendars – A Family Tradition in So Many Ways
I feel like I’m the new kid on the block, finally entering into the Christmas season with little ones. For years and years, it was either me and my immediate and extended family, me and my friends, me and my husband…and now, it’s me, the husband and our toddler crew of 2. Over the years, I’ve been piling up ideas – things I couldn’t wait to do when I had kids. Advent calendars are one of my favorites. We never did them in our house when I was a kid, and I always thought how much fun it would have been to have a countdown to Christmas with something we did daily to celebrate.
The Real Advent
My boys are still young – just 2 1/2 years old – so we will do a simplified version of an Advent calendar this year – but this is something I want them to anticipate and grow into as they get older. It’s so important to find ways to make sure the Christmas season isn’t overshadowed by all the shopping and craziness. For me, it’s all about focusing on the birth and coming of Christ (“The Advent”), time with family, and serving others. Advents calendars make this happen in a fun way that builds excitement each day.
Since my boys are little, I bought the Story of Christmas: Story Book Set and Advent Calendar. It’s a tri-fold calendar that has a Bible reading for every day.
However, as they get older, I’m so excited about the possibilities in using advent calendars with them for acts of kindness and family activities.
Below, I’ve listed 30 DIY Advent Calendars that you can create and use with your family. You’ll see lots of ideas with fabric pouches, galvanized buckets, ladders and clothes pins. There are many variations and designs, and if you gravitate toward a certain look, I know you’ll find something you love.
Also, I’ve listed another 10 Advent Calendars that you can purchase instead of make. The holidays can get a little crazy and we can run out of time pretty quickly – so if you would rather buy than DIY, there are 10 options there as well!
I also have a Free Printable Christmas Advent Calendar with over 70 activities for you to choose from. Each day has 3 different activities: a Bible reading, a family activity and an act of kindness. You can mix and match them however you like, but it gives you lots of options! You can use these ideas with any of the advent calendars that you create or buy. Just fill in the box below to get your copy!
Christmas Decor Options
Another thing I love about advent calendars is that they can double as very functional, multi-purpose Christmas decor! If you’re looking for some more Christmas decor inspiration, here are 30 farmhouse rustic Christmas decorating ideas for porches, mantels | tables |entryways as well as kitchen and dining areas!
If DIY is more your speed, you can try these farmhouse Christmas DIY projects that you can show off right alongside your advent calendar!
Displaying Christmas cards can also double as Christmas decor, and here 21 ideas for how to make a stylish display of your Christmas cards!
OK, now on to the advent calendars!
30 DIY Christmas Advent Calendars (+ 10 You Can Buy!)
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1| Wooden Tree Advent Calendar Tutorial from Dear Lillie
I love the rustic look of this advent calendar. Not only is it is a fun way to incorporate some Christmas fun, but it totally adds to your Christmas decor!
2| Pottery Barn Knock Off DIY Advent Calendar from Make and Do Crew
Any time you can make something from Pottery Barn instead of buy it, you need to get on that! Pottery Barn style is timeless and classy, and being able to make one yourself is definitely something you should be proud of!
3| DIY Clothes Pin Advent Calendar from Bless’er House
This is an oh-so-simple project, but there’s so much bang for the buck. A clothesline with clothes pins – how great is that? I bet you could even just secure it straight to the wall and be all good.
4| Christmas Advent Calendar Wall Chart with Free Tutorial & Printable from The Painted Hive
This is such a cute project, too. I love the chalkboard and vintage look! Free printables are included with this one!
5| Free Printable Vintage Christmas Advent Calendar from Ella Claire Inspired
The rustic, nostalgic look on this one is just perfect. It looks like Santa himself created this!
6| DIY Advent Calendar from The Marion House Book
This advent calendar is all in the details! There are so many ways to personalize this one and make it especially meaningful for your family.
7| Dollar Store Advent Calendar from Infarrantly Creative
Dollar Store? You are definitely speaking my language and my budget thanks you! This is a super-simple idea but has a beautiful and striking effect!
8| DIY Christmas Advent Calendar from Kids Activities Blog
This advent calendar doubles as an adorable wreath ( I love multi-functional pieces) and this is super-kid friendly! I love the bright colors on this one!
9| Ladder Advent Calendar from Her Tool Belt
This ladder is a super-cute way to display these beautiful advent calendar pouches. The project requires a little woman power, but the results are worth it! The tutorial is for the ladder, by the way!
10| DIY Magnetic Advent Calendar from Lemon Thistle
This is such a fun one to put together! I love the idea for having a cohesive look on the refrigerator. This looks amazing and I’m sure the kids would love the reminder as they are getting more snacks!
11| Advent Calendar on Vintage Ladder from Desire Empire
Here’s another one that uses both a ladder and little buckets. Combined, it is a completely stylish and adorable piece!
12| DIY Advent Calendar with Free Treat Bag Printable from Yellow Bliss Road
Here’s a super-simple advent calendar to put together if you’re a little short on creativity! The tutorial comes with the printable bags, and then it’s just clothes pins and string. Super easy!
13| Chalkboard Ornament Advent Calendar from Thistlewood Farms
This is a very easy project to put together if you have a chalkboard or don’t mind buying one. Clip your favorite ornaments to it, or buy a few to add to your collection, and you’re good to go!
14| Tree Advent Calendar from We are Scout
I especially love this one because I think tree branches are amazing multi-seasonal decor. They can easily be adapted to fall, then to Christmas, then to winter. This is super-pretty way to decorate some (free) tree branches and make them look beautiful for Christmas!
15| Chicken Wire Advent Calendar from Brown Eyed Fox
Chicken wire is a very popular look in farmhouse and rustic decor. Adding in some simple fabric bags and tiny clothes pins complete the looks and make a fun advent calendar project!
16| Library Pocket Advent Calendar Tutorial from Ruffled Sunshine
Library pockets are so nostalgic! Most kids probably wont’ even know what they are! But we will, and we’ll love this project all the more for it!
17| DIY Message in a Bottle Advent Calendar from The Merry Thought
This one is super-unique, and I’m pretty sure you won’t find anyone else with something like it. If you like a more clean and minimalist look, or something a little more boho, this is a great project for you!
18| 25 Days of Christmas from House and Home
This is another take on fabric pouches. This can double as a banner or bunting on a mantel, yet serves as a beautiful advent calendar (I love the magic of Christmas with this child looking at it!)
19| Framed DIY Advent Calendar from Lia Griffith
This is another beautiful idea! I love the mini binder clips hooked on baker’s twine. The translucent pouches add a magical touch to it also! Very easy if you have an extra frame laying around!
20| Wall Mounted Advent Calendar from The DIY Dreamer
This is a very similar one to #1, but it’s a little more primitive farmhouse. It’s a very clean, rustic look that will add to your Christmas decor as well!
21| Knock Off Pottery Barn Advent Calendar from Thrifty Decor Chick
This is another Pottery Barn copy cat that I absolutely love. This would be really beautiful up on a shelf or mantel.
22| DIY Christ-Centered Advent Calendar from Kemley Designs
I love that this one is Christ-centered. It’s a beautiful piece of decor but at the same time, keeps the family focused on the true meaning of the season!
23| Easy DIY Christmas Advent Calendar from The Celebration Shoppe
I love the bright and fun colors for this advent calendar. This can easily be adapted to your style and whatever is popular this season!
24| Make Your Own Advent Calendar from The Pretty Bee
This is another fun idea using jewelry boxes! I’m all about upcycling, and if you’ve been hanging on to some boxes because something just might come up, this is the project for you!
25| Big Box DIY Advent Calendar from Mod Podge Rocks
Here’s another fun project using boxes! I really love the three-dimensional aspect of this design, along with the vintage paper. Unique and interesting decor as well!
26| Easy No Sew Burlap Advent Calendar from Finding Home Farms
Burlap is another really popular fabric in farmhouse and rustic decor. I love that this project can be put together without sewing! Great if you’re short on time and sewing skills!
27| Bucket Christmas Advent Calendar from Our Vintage Home Love
Here’s another fun take on the galvanized pail! This is a simple and clean project put together very easily and very customizable as well!
28| Pottery Barn Knock Off Tree Advent Calendar from Rogue Engineer
You really can take your pick of Pottery Barn copycats! The effect of this one is just beautiful. It’s perfection for the ‘magic of Christmas’ childhood experience!
29| Upcycled DIY Advent Calendar from Northstory
Look closely at this one. Toilet paper rolls! If you are all about no-waste in your house, I think you found your project!
30| Hanging Countdown Christmas Calendar from Better Homes and Gardens
I love the rustic look of this! It’s nostalgic and cozy and just a super-sweet addition to Christmas decor, which makes the whole season so much more meaningful.
If you’re not into DIY or don’t have the time, here are 10 Advent Calendars for your convenience that you can purchase by clicking the links.
10 More Advent Calendars for Purchase
There’s no doubt that these Advent Calendars will certainly get you and your family in the Christmas spirit! Not only that, they will get you focused in the right direction- on Jesus, on family, and on serving others!
Don’t forget to grab your FREE PRINTABLE – 70+ Advent Activities (Bible Readings, Family Activities and Acts of Kindness). Fill in the box below!
Does your family use advent calendars? Which ones are your favorites? I’d love to hear from you! 🙂
*Be sure to check out the Ultimate Holiday Shopping Guide with over 70+ retailers! This is an updated guide with specials, sales, deals and coupon codes. This will be updated BLACK FRIDAY and CYBER MONDAY 2019!
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Need more Christmas inspiration? Check out these other Christmas posts!
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