DIY Paper Pocket Advent Calendar + Fillers Ideas

reading time: 2 min

Advent season is close, my friends. If you are as excited for Christmas as I am, you probably already pulled out your printed pyjamas and are jamming out to Christmas tunes. Or maybe that's just me 😁 As a child I always got a handmade Advent calendar from my parents to count down to Christmas, and now it's my turn to make Advent calendars myself. 

Since I don't have children yet, my boyfriend is very lucky to be the one to get an Advent calendar instead (he has no idea though, so shhhhh...!). The last Advent calendar (which was for my flatmates) I made from sandwich bags, and this year I'm making a DIY paper pocket calendar.

This calendar is suitable for your child, your husband, your girlfriend, your parents... whoever you want to surprise with some treats and tiny gifts :)

NOTE: Here in Germany we only count down to the 24th, so make sure to adjust your own advent calendar to your Christmas tradition!

You will need:
  • 24 tea bag sleeves * 
  • 24 fillers (see below)
  • 24 number stickers
  • cardboard 
  • glue
  • scissors
  • patterned wrapping paper or scrapbooking paper
  • optional: washi tape, ribbon...

* I like to upcycle my empty tea bag sleeves to make a creative advent calendar. Alternatively, you can also make your own little paper envelopes from wrapping paper or scrapbooking paper!

Make it:

Cover a piece of cardboard in festive wrapping paper to serve as your background. Make sure it's big enough to carry all of your tea bag sleeves. Then glue your tea bag sleeves onto the cardboard, flap facing up. 

Cover each envelope with a different piece of patterned scrapbooking paper or gift wrap – make sure the flap doesn't get pasted over. Feel free to use washi tape, ribbons etc to decorate the tea bag sleeves.

Either use premade number stickers (such as these or these), or cut out numbers 1-24 from construction paper, and attach to each of the envelopes in random order. I used different fonts and styles for my hand drawn numbers. 

Fill your envelopes with little presents, candies, or loving notes. You could also seal them closed with the cut out numbers.

My fillers:

- 2 small vegan chocolate bars
- 1 vegan gingerbread biscuit
- 1 vegan chocolate Santa Claus
- 4 tea bags with different flavours
- 1 star shaped cookie cutter for baking
- 1 vegan pate
- 1 activity "coupon" for baking cookies together
- 1 activity "coupon" for a head and neck massage
- 1 activity "coupon" for breakfast in bed
- 1 activity "coupon" for a meal of his choice
- 1 hot chocolate mix (cocoa, cinnamon, coconut blossom sugar, chopped mint chocolate, pinch of sea salt)
- 1 organic charcoal face mask (he always uses my face masks 😜)
- 1 travel size hand cream
- 1 glittery Christmas tea light candle 
- 1 shower bomb
- unwaxed floss
- a trolley token (he lost his)
- a photo of us for his wallet (cheesy I know)
- 1 chocolate-covered marzipan bar + my boyfriend's birthday present
- 1 chocolate-covered marzipan bar + my boyfriend's Christmas present 

Of course, you could also just fill the paper pockets with a selection of 24 different varieties of tea, 24 activity coupons, or 24 different sorts of candy or snacks.