Celebrate the run up to Christmas with these chic ways to countdown the advent.
PICT: Fabelab in the woods advent from Bobby Rabbit
How many sleeps until Christmas?
Gone are the days of a cardboard advent calendar (remember those?) Today, its all about stationary, small toy or crafts hiding under those 24 little windows (or boxes) as they count down until the big day. Get a little head start with a few of our favourites - as you need to get your skates on - the best ones sell out fast!
Here's our top 15 best advent calendar for children for 2018...
For some toddler sensory play
The Melissa & Doug Countdown to Christmas Wooden Advent Calendar is a timeless keepsake that will delight children for years to come. With 24 magnetic baubles and a shining star for the top of the tree - small hands can re-arrange over and over again
For those who like Scandic-Chic
KalenderHaus by Clever Gretal is a beautiful pre-baked gingerbread house that you put together and decorate each day of advent. And, hello how beautiful is the packaging for a start?
Presented in a keepsake wooden box. The inside of the box then becomes the advent calendar – where you can place the 24 pre-packed and numbered bags that contain a little treat to decorate your house with – and the lid is your cake board to build the house on. Still with us?
KalenderHaus also come with a pliable ready-made icing tub and icing bag – that you just need to load up and keep in fridge so it’s ready to use each day when you need to ‘glue’ on or down either an edible treat or a special hand-selected decoration. Creative and editable come Christmas Eve. A win–win.
** New this year is the KalenderHaus II which is slightly less expensive but offers all of the above except for the wooden presentation box (comes in a card box) - or, is a great refill if you have the original.
For the Lego addicts
Each year the Lego advent calendar offering gets bigger and bigger - and each promises to be as collectable as the next. If you have kids addicted to Lego (and who doesn't?) then they will enjoy a little daily 'buildable treat' and watching the Christmas scene come together in the festive run-up. We love this years LEGO City version
For those who love the original story of Christmas
If you’re more of a nativity fan than Lego fanatic, then a traditional calendar may be more your style. This gorgeous modern take on the nativity scene from Petit Collage is made from recycled card and includes pop-out pieces that fit together to make a bright 3D puzzle scene. Also comes in a winter wonderland version.
For those who want a touch of luxury
This Biscuiteers limited edition advent calendar has been hand-crafted and designed exclusively by Susie Watson. This investment buy will soon become part of your Christmas year after year with its cosy Christmas inspired artwork - cue picture perfect home surrounded by snow and trees, and of course, a snowman. With 24 little pockets to fill with sweets or treats - or, why not go for the full Biscuiteers experience and add its luxe advent calendar biscuit tin too?
For those that want a little magic
It’s by Maileg so of course it’ s going to be adorable? Children will love this perfectly decorated little room/house with a cupboard, drawers, bedlinen and of course a little Maileg Pixi. Pixi sleeps all day, and at night creeps out to chalk the next days date (or days countdown) and hides a little gift or treat in his room for the littles to find. This could also work for counting down the days to birthday and special events.
For those who love to DIY
We're big fans of Cotton Twist and its Make your Own personalised advent calendar kit contains everything kids need to create totally unique calendar with bakers twine and mini pegs to hang the stickered envelopes that can be filled with treats, messages, christmas activity ideas and chocolate coins. (Check out Cotton Twist site where there is a massive list of ideas to get you started.)
For the kids bedroom wall
If you have a plain wall this Kidscapes Personalised Advent Calendar Tree wall Stickersadvent is ideal – and can also be considered part of your Christmas decor. A colourful tree wall sticker that can be personalised (on the tree pot and gifts) – with the idea to stick a new tree ornament on each day until you reach the star on the top. Great for the kitchen wall or kids bedrooms.
For those that love to craft
The Selfie Clothing Co.Colour In Christmas Advent Calendar will bring days of crafty Christmas fun colour. Coming with 8 fabric pens (and a practice sheet) this fabric printed calendar makes for a few minutes quiet each morning (or evening) as children can colour and create to their hearts content.
What's more we love that there is no waste as the fabric pens will be clipped together to form a rod, which is then inserted through the hem at the top of the calendar - allowing the calendar to be hung in the family home, making a display that children will be proud to show off! This can also be personalised for an extra special touch.
For those that love extra surprises
If you have managed to escape the Hatchimals craze then you can look away now. But, those those children obsessed with those cute little animal collectibles this is a Christmas miracle. The Hatchimals Colleggtibles Advent Calendar has over 50 surprises to discover with exclusive items that will delight fans aged 5+ long after the festive season.
For the Eco conscious
Having recently scooped a Junior Design Award we were bound to love the PLAY in CHOC advent calendar. With 24 drawers each containing a 10g organic (and vegan friendly) chocolate with touch of coconut, a 3D puzzle and fun facts card. This environmentally responsible calendar then becomes an eco toy to play with on Christmas eve - just replace the drawers (back to font) to form a new picture and open out the outer sleeve to creat a landscape.
For something a little different
This fun Nativity Puppet advent calendar from Oxfam is perfect for the run up to Christmas for smaller children - and encourages storytelling and creativity. As each day of the advent features a fun eco certified card finger puppet from the Nativity story.
For classic toy lovers
Fans of Schleich figures will delight at this advent especially horse and pony fans who will love these delightful hand-painted figures and accessories. Encouraging learning through imaginative play - and what's more it offers repeat play once the Christmas tree is down. There is also a dinosaur, wildlife and farm animals versions.
For those who want to start with a bang
Literally! We just love this Reindeer Balloon Christmas Advent Calendar from Bubblegum Balloons. The kit includes a gold string of numbered reindeer faces and comes with pre-stuffed (with a chocolate) mini red balloon noses to burst.
Each ballon simply need inflating with a hand pump and its recommend to inflate them a week at a time to ensure the balloons give a satisfactory pop everyday throughout December
For a nostalgic touch
Launching it's first ever advent calendar White Stuff add a touch of childhood nostalgia with its vintage style Felt Advent Calendar. This fuzzy felt hanging calendar has 24 little pockets filled with a surprise character to add to the pom-pom baubles on the tree. The children will have fun re-arranging the decorations too!