Tricks & Tips

Make your own Advent calendar!

What would the lead-up to Christmas be like without the excitement of opening a door of your Advent calendar every morning? This year, why not make your own, read on to find out how.

You’ve probably noticed the colourful Advent calendars popping up in the supermarkets since September, but, this year – blogger Mona’s got a nice, home-made alternative for you. A beautiful homemade Advent calendar made out of upcycled Vapiano To-Go-Boxes – packed full of handpicked surprises and love.
Hi Mona, what a wonderful idea. How do you go about transforming Vapiano To-Go boxes into an advent calendar?

This Advent calendar design is super easy to follow. For this one, I simply sprayed the lids of the Vapiano To-Go boxes with gold paint and then covered the insides of the boxes with wrapping paper, so that when I packed the gifts they weren’t loose in the boxes. And, because I didn’t want to just stick the numbers on, I baked them instead. Since this is an Advent calendar for men, that was it really - apart from a few branches – for the decoration. The boxes can then be placed in a nice corner of the room or placed in a larger box or chest.

And what are your tips for the presents?


I have to say that it wasn’t that easy to find a lot of nice little things for men. But, don’t let that put you off,  if you keep your eyes open, you’re sure to find some great little presents. Here’s a couple of ideas to get you started:

• Unusual beers

• Barbecue accessories (barbecue gloves, smoking chimneys etc. are very popular)

• Beard oils and grooming products

• Tea to relax with

• warm socks to wear around the house, bonus points if you get them in trendy ochre 

• Spice mixes and rubs

• a T-shirt - we got one that features his favourite TV show
• Chocolate

• Whiskey glasses

• Vouchers for Vapiano, so he can take you on a cozy dinner date for two

And now for the fun part!

Instead of simply sticking the numbers on, I decided I’d bake them. My Advent calendar includes a number of foodie-themed surprises, so it made sense to make the numbers edible too!

This is how to prepare a simple short crust pastry for the number biscuits. Firstly, add all of these ingredients and mix into a dough.

• 100g of sugar

• 200g butter (cold)

• 300g of flour

• 1 egg

• a pinch of salt


Sprinkle the work surface and rolling pin with a little flour and then roll out the dough. Then, cut out the numbers and use a cocktail stick or skewer to create a hole in the unbaked biscuit so that it can be hung onto the calendar once baked. Then bake for about 10 minutes at 150 degrees. Pro tip: cover the biscuits with baking paper or aluminum foil while they bake, so that they stay a nice light colour. Leave to cool and then decorate with white icing around the edges. Et voilà – you’re done!

Lastly, tie the finished Advent calendar numbers on to the box with a nice ribbon or thread. If you want, you can even decorate the Advent calendar boxes with a few Christmas tree decorations and/or eucalyptus branches to make it really Christmassy.

Mona’s blog Ich liebe Deko, or “I love decoration” covers everything within the DIY and crafting world. Here you will find creative ideas for everything from wedding decoration, to interior design, to cake pops, to DIY ideas, mummy hacks and much, much more.