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DIY Advent Calendar

A DIY advent calendar is a fun and affordable way to count down the days until Christmas and add holiday cheer to your home. Whether you’re looking to make an advent calendar for kids or the whole family, our modern homemade advent calendar will appeal to everyone. Check out our guide to making your own wooden advent calendar shaped like a tree, using plywood and ornaments.

Skill Level: Beginner
  1. Step 1 Measure and Cut Plywood

    Measure plywood for wood advent calendar
    Cut plywood for homemade advent calendar in half

    Start with a sheet of plywood that’s 4 feet by 8 feet wide and ¾-inch thick. Measure and cut sheet in half.

    On one half, measure and cut 3 feet for the bottom of the advent calendar and 4 feet for the height. Both bottom corners should come to a 70-degree angle and the top corner should be a 40-degree angle.

    Lightly sand the edges and surface of the final triangular piece of plywood.

  2. Step 2 Mark & Drill Board

    A man measuring the top of the unfinished plywood
    A man sanding the triangular piece of plywood

    Mark 2 inches from the top and 6 ½ inches from the bottom, leaving a gap of 1 ½ inches on the sides of the board and trace a line.

    From the traced line, create five more rows with a gap of 6 ½ inches between each. You should have seven rows in total that will be used for ornaments. 

    Starting from the top of the DIY advent calendar mark:

    • Row 1: 1 ornament in the middle.
    • Row 2: 2 ornaments with a distance of 4 ½ inches in between.
    • Row 3: 3 ornaments with a distance of 4 ½ inches in between.
    • Row 4: 4 ornaments with a distance of 4 ½ inches in between.
    • Row 5: 4 ornaments with a distance of 6 ½ inches in between.
    • Row 6: 5 ornaments with a distance of 6 ½ inches in between.
    • Row 7: 6 ornaments with a distance of 5 ½ inches in between.

    At the marked locations, pre-drill and insert the 1 ½-inch wood screws.

    You should have a total of 25 screws in place.

  3. Step 3 Paint Your DIY Christmas Advent Calendar

    A man painting the plywood triangle with white wood stain and a brush
    Paint numbers on your advent calendar with green paint.

    Paint or stain the Christmas tree-shaped board using the colour of your choice and leave to dry. For our DIY advent calendar, we used BEHR Wood Stain and Sealer in white.

    Once dry, paint the numbers 1 though 25 above each wood screw using a pointed round brush. For our homemade advent calendar, we used BEHR Marquee Paint in green.

  4. Step 4 Decorate Your Wood Advent Calendar

    A person’s hands looping rope through a green holiday ornament for a DIY advent calendar
    A person’s hands adding candy to rope hanging from green holiday ornament

    Measure, cut and loop 5 ½ inches of jute rope through the end of each Christmas ornament. Add candy canes and treats to each ornament for a festive touch to your homemade advent calendar that kids will love.

    Hang ornaments on your DIY wood advent calendar starting December 1st and you are ready to count down the days until Christmas!

What You Need for This Project

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