Adding an advent calendar to your holiday traditions is a fun and festive way to build excitement and enjoy the season with your family. But advent calendars can become quite the production – from getting all the materials, to putting it all together, to actually sticking to the countdown during an already hectic time. But it doesn’t have to be that way! Want to DIY your own advent calendar, with no fuss or muss and without breaking the bank? Here are 80+ fabulous countdowns to Christmas – broken down into varying levels of DIY-ability and ease of use. Find inspiration for your next DIY Christmas advent calendar and get ready for the Christmas season now!
80+ Fun, Fast and Frugal Christmas Advent Calendars
In this post:
Page 1: No Effort DIY Advent Calendars
Page 2: Easy DIY Advent Calendars
Page 3: Medium DIY Advent Calendars
Page 4: Expert DIY Advent Calendars
If you can make it in an hour or less, it’s considered easy. I lot of these advents use materials you can probably find around your house, so they’re nice and frugal too!
Christmas Book Countdown // Positively Splendid
If you’ve got some beloved Christmas books, you’ve got the makings for a great advent countdown. Wrap them up and let your kids find the number that corresponds to the day, then spend time reading them together!
Ribbon Roll Advent Countdown // Homework
Simply add numbers every few inches to a long piece of ribbon, roll it up and hang it from a dowel or (in this case) a small hanger. Every day, unroll to reveal the current date. It’s a fast, easy way to build anticipation for the holidays.
Dino-Advent // Boxy Colonial
This dinosaur advent it adorable and easy – all you need is spray paint! It’s an unexpected theme for Christmas, but one that kids will get a huge kick out of.
Christmas Carol Advent // A Girl and a Glue Gun
If you’ve got a vinyl cutting machine, you can make these Christmas carol ornaments. Then put them in a basket or jar, and pick one each day. Sing the song together and hang the ornament on the tree! Fun, fast and easy.
Magnetic Countdown // Sugar Bee Crafts
Here’s another idea for your vinyl cutter. Cut out the phrase and numbers, then place them on a pizza sheet. Glue a magnet to a jingle bell and move it around the sheet by placing it on the correct number each day.
Rainbow Scripture Advent // Pars Caeli
All you need is paper in a rainbow of colors and tape to create the colorful and fun advent! If you get precut squares of paper, it’s even easier to create! Inside the folded, pop-up squares are scriptures to read each day leading to Christmas.
Stamped Mini Envelopes in a Tray // Simply Stamped
These cute mini envelopes were stamped and embellished in a simple, classic style – but you could easily recreate this project with printed labels or cards if you don’t own stamps. Just fill the envelopes with treats and line them up in a handmade tray for a simple but pretty display.
Printable Lift-the-Flap Advent // Delia Creates
This printable lift-a-flap advent has a fun, modern look and you can customize it to meet your needs! Under each flap you write an activity to do that day – but you could also write a scripture to read together, a song to sing or Christmas themed jokes!
Embroidery Hoop Wreath Advent Calendar // Lapinblu
Wire some greenery to the hoop and tie packages at different levels. That’s literally all it takes to make this pretty, simple advent.
Clothespin Advent Calendar // Bless’er House
Make this clothespin advent with things you’ve got at home. Use scrap wood, glue, clothespins and maybe a little paint, then pin up goodie-filled paper bags and numbers.
PVC Pipe Tree Advent // Dukes and Duchesses
It’s hard to believe this cute tree is made out of PVC pipe! Using only hot glue, it’s an easy build. The best part is that it’s sturdy, so will last for many years of month-long advent use!
12 Days of Christmas Muffin Tin Countdown // Domestic Imperfection
If 12 days of advent calendar activities and goodies seems more doable than 25, use a muffin tin for your countdown! This one uses scraps of paper and magnets to hold treats in the muffin holes.
Velcro Advent Wall Tree // Brit + Co
Velcro strips attach small boxes right to the wall. The velcro is remove-able for after the holidays, and you can decorate them or not, depending on your taste.
Stick-Up, Scratch Off Advent Calendar // Rae Ann Kelly
You can make your own scratch off cards! Write a fun activity underneath the DIY gold scratch off paint. Then just tape these guys up where you’ve got space.
Mod Ribbon and Envelope Frame Advent // Yellow Bliss Road
With an old frame, some ribbon and the printable set found here, you’ve got a cute advent all ready to go! Print and assemble the envelopes, then stuff them with the printable activity and scripture cards.
Ribbons and Tags Calendar // Little Glass Jar
Again, make use of what you already have! If you’ve got chalkboards, neutral canvases, plank wood background or blank frames, just string them with wide ribbon. In this version, use mini clothespins, and ready-made envelopes and gift tags stamped with numbers.
Burlap Pocket Advent Calendar // On Sutton Place
With just a few quick stitches, you can sew up this pocket calendar that fits small treats or pieces of paper. Hang festive tags from each pocket to keep track of the date.
Burlap Bag and Ladder Advent // Twelve on Main
Making mini burlap bags is a cinch, and then all you have to do it stuff them with prizes and tie them on something! Here, they used an old, rustic ladder (which you can normally find at antique stores or sometimes thrift stores). But you could also hang them on a ribbon, or piece of twine to make a garland.
Muslin Advent Bags // More Like Home
Or make your bags out of muslin fabric and hang them along a branch! Cute and easy. Check out how she filled the bags, too – Christmas themed felt ornaments you can use year after year!
Felt Stocking Advent // Kristi Murphy
These cute stockings are made out of felt! If you’ve got a Cricut machine, the work’s already done for you here, but these would be easy to cut out and hot glue all by hand.
Pill-bottle Advent Garland // Crafts Unleashed
The hardest part about this DIY is finding the perfect paper mache boxes to fit the bill. These cute tubes are about the size of a pill bottle, and perfect for small candy or rolled up paper. Paint them to customize, then string them up and you’re all set!
Paper Tree Advent // Willowday
All you need to do is print out the template, cut and glue to create these simple trees. You can customize the color scheme for any decor and they double as decorations!
Toilet Paper Tube Advent // The Country Chic Cottage
Decorate TP tubes individually, put some candy inside, and fold down the ends. Number them and put them in a bucket. Voila! FREE!
Hanging TP Tube Advent Calendar // OHOH Blog
OR, cut your TP tubes to different heights, glue them in a grid, put candy inside and glue tissue paper on the ends. String them up with ribbon. Easy and inexpensive.
TP Tube Tree // Nearly Crafty
OR, stick your TP tubes on the back of cardboard cut in the shape of a tree! Cut out some circles first, and cover the tubes with tissue paper. TP Tubes are free, and so versatile!
TP Tubes and Trees Advent // Morning Creativity
Here’s one more idea for toilet paper tubes! (they’re just so easy to come by!) We love the simplicity of this advent, both in look and DIY-ability.
Christmas Gift Advent Calendar Garland // Craft Thyme
Use brown boxes and decorate however you like. Then wrap them with twine to look like mini Christmas gifts and string them in a funky grouping along a garland. The final look is really fun.
Paper Cup Advent // Crafterberry Bush
Paper cups make a cute calendar too! With a little wire or string, you can hang them from ribbon with clothespins. Then just add some treats.
Egg Carton Advent // OHOH Blog
Believe it or not, an egg carton makes a great advent! Use the bottom of two cartons and glue them together to create 24 tiny pocket for treats. Then wrap it all in tissue paper! Frugal and fun!
Paper Bags and Branch Advent // Third Floor Design Studio
Brown paper bags can be a simple, modern advent with the aid of a festive branch, some twine and paperclips.
Floating Pod Advent Calendar // Fall for DIY
Find inspiration from nature for your advent calendar! This version uses pods that are large enough for one small treat or a piece of paper slipped into the back opening. Utilizing number stickers makes this DIY even easier – just string them up, fill them up and you’re good! It’s largely free, cute and all natural!