DIY Advent Calendar With Recycled Cardboard And Cardboard Tubes

How to Make an Advent Calendar Using Cardboard and Paper Tubes

History of the Advent Calendar

Perhaps our penchant to begin the Christmas season so early has a deeper meaning than just higher retail sales. “Advent” is the Latin word for coming or coming forward. Early Christian practices are the basis for the Advent calendar of the 19th century. 

Christians from centuries ago began to feel that honoring the Blessed Savior only one day a year was not enough. So they began to celebrate the coming of Christ early by praying and teaching the children about the Saviour. 

Early Advent Calendars

Early Christians began marking their doors with the numeral one in chalk and continued the numbering through December 24th. 

From that time, the practice evolved into the Advent calendar of today with little windows to open revealing tiny treats behind them. 

Then in 19th century Germany a mother made her son a calendar of the days with small treats stuck to cardboard. Gerhard Lang never forgot the thrill of this first Advent calendar. As an adult, he went into business with a partner to open a printing press in 1908. Among other things, they published Advent calendars. 

Easy DIY Advent Calendar

Collect bathroom tissue holders to make this Advent calendar. You will need 12. Cut in half with an Xacto knife


Measure and cut a 15 by 20-inch piece of cardboard. 


Hot glue the paper tube halves to the board evenly spaced and ragged side down. 


The easiest way to paint this project is to spray paint outdoors and then touch up with acrylic. 008

Cut Circles 5 inches in diameter from colored gift tissue. Use white color coding dots for the numbers.

Hide tiny treasures for the loved one(s) in your life. I made mine for tween and teen girls with candies, miniature bottles of nail polish, etc. And of course, money fits well. Jewelry too!


Slice the top corners of your Advent calendar and thread a pretty ribbon hanger through. 


No time to DIY? Check out these commercial Advent calendars. 

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