Advent calendars make December even more exciting than it already is. Opening an advent calendar door each day builds the anticipation of Christmas Day. There are bigger and better advent calendars coming out every year, some of which can be very expensive. Creating your own advent calendar for someone special, instead of buying one, can be a very affordable option. It also involves more effort than buying one, making it a very thoughtful gift. Here are some DIY advent calendar ideas to help you create a special calendar for a loved one.

Stitch A Fabric Calendar

Fabric advent calendars are inexpensive to make, easy to store, and washable. They can be used year after year. You can cut out a shape, such as a Christmas tree, and sew on little fabric pockets to store things in. If your sewing skills aren’t very good, choose a kit that only requires minimal assembly. I used a Fabrikit set which is suitable for crafting beginners and which comes with everything you need in the box including thread.

Re-Use Cardboard Boxes

If you have a stash of small cardboard boxes lying around, they can be repurposed into an advent calendar. Fill each one with anything you want and wrap them individually in Christmas wrapping paper. Add a numbered gift tag and place the boxes under the tree.

Make A Hanging Calendar From Matchboxes

Matchboxes are the ideal size for filling with little treats, and are lightweight so perfect for dangling from string or twine. A beautiful example of this can be seen here. You can also glue matchboxes together to make little sets of drawers, which also looks very effective.

Create A Wreath Made Of Sweets

You get a two-in-one Christmas decoration with this calendar which doubles up as a pretty Christmas wreath. This advent calendar costs very little to make and yet looks stunning.

Use Envelopes

An effective and eye-catching DIY advent calendar can be created using only envelopes and pegs or tape. Try taping or pegging envelopes filled with treats to a wall or board in the shape of a Christmas tree. Number each envelope for all 24 days (try sealing them shut with numbered die-cut stickers).

Hessian Bag Garland

For a rustic look, buy a batch of small hessian bags with a drawstring closure. These look gorgeous tied to string and draped above a fireplace. You could try stamping the numbers on to the bags, or gluing felt numbers to them.

Cookies And Candles

Having an advent calendar that is almost completely edible may be my favourite idea of them all. Make 24 cakes or cookies and either ice each one with a number, or add a numbered candle. Easy!

Repurpose A Shoe Organiser

One of the most ingenious ways to create an affordable DIY advent calendar has to be this one. Obviously having a shoe organiser with 24 pouches works perfectly, but you could try one with only 12 instead. Stencil on the numbers and fill with anything you want for each day. These are large pouches so this is ideal for larger treats.

Once you have your advent calendar ready, it’s time to fill it with surprises for your loved one. You could choose chocolates, sweets, little toys, candles, travel-sized beauty products, ornaments, little notes, and even money. The choice really is up to you. Have fun making these affordable DIY advent calendars and save money in the process.