My Fabulous & Inexpensive Advent Calendar

Inspiration is all around us.  I try to find it in everything I see, do, experience.  I finally found something that I was determined to create my own “hacked” version.  I hope that’s the right term.  I was at Target a few weeks ago and saw this really cool advent calendar.  I thought “I could totally find enough containers and make this myself!  I don’t want to pay $20 for this.”

It didn’t really turn out like this one in particular, since I couldn’t round up enough canisters on the cheap.  But I am pretty happy with what I made!

Check it out:

This is what I used to make my advent calendar.  You don’t see ribbon in this pic, but I added it in later.

I bought these favor boxes at Walmart, in the clearance section of course.  Why would I need 50 of these boxes?  For this very moment!  This is where my hoarding comes in handy, honey!  These boxes have been sitting in my craft closet for…I don’t remember how long exactly.  But  for $5.00, I made the most expensive purchase for this project.  Boom!

I cut my foam board down to nearly a perfect square.  I wanted enough room around the little favor boxes.  Then I wrapped the square in wrapping paper that I thought would work well with pink.

 I assembled the boxes, then adorned the top of them with pretty and Christmas-y chevron washi tape and an envelope sealing sticker.  I needed a way to tie in the pink boxes to the Christmas wrapping paper.  I think it worked turned out alright!

 Next, I took my glue gun and gave the bottoms of the boxes a nice swirl of hot glue.  I placed them in an orderly fashion on my square foam board, though you can really put them on here without rhyme or reason.  It’s a free crafting country.

I used a glue gun and staples to attach the ribbon to the board, for added security.

I numbered the boxes by hand.  The Wilton’s party favors boxes came with label stickers that you can print whatever you want on them.  I just decided not to fuss with the printer for this project.  Plus there’s already a whole lot going on visually, and I thought the stickers might get lost in the colors.  

I used leftover ribbon to make bows for a final touch.

I didn’t realize today was the 1st of December.  I really need to get on the ball with keeping track of the date.  My goodness…so of course I don’t have candy for the girls to open in box #1.  I figured I’d go tomorrow and get some holiday-themed candy small enough to fit in each box.  I’ll be needing 3 pieces per box.  Eeek!  Next year, my advent calendar will require something bigger than a favor box, when L is able to partake in the holiday festivities.  Guess I will need to start hunting for a collection of small containers as originally planned, huh?

You can pretty much fill the boxes with whatever you want.  Little trinkets, Hershey kisses, stickers, and notes were some ideas that I came up with.  Oriental Trading is a great website to look at for small fillers.  I look there before anywhere else on the web.

In total, this project cost me:
$1 – Ribbon (AC Moore)
$1 – chevron washi tape (AC Moore)
$3 – 2 pk foam board
$5 – party favors (clearance)
$2 – envelope sealing stickers (clearance)
Items on hand = wrapping paper, glue gun, staples 

Will you be making an Advent Calendar?  Perhaps you’ll try this one out for size?  Tell me what you might use instead of party favor boxes!

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