Haymes Blog › Minimalist DIY Advent Calendar Idea

| | 21st November 2016

Minimalist DIY Advent Calendar Idea

By Gina Ciancio

Help build excitement and pass the days to Christmas with this advent calendar idea.

Using a simple hook and string weave inside a timber box frame, this advent calendar is stylish in its minimalist design that can be repurposed throughout the year to display family photos or inspiration in a home office.

Items you will need:

  • 4 lengths of simple pine timber from the hardware store
  • Saw or for the timber to be cut to size in store
  • Wood super glue
  • Clamps
  • Haymes Ultracover paint
  • Haymes Greyology 1 white paint
  • Haymes Black Pitch paint
  • Haymes Blood Diamond paint
  • Paint brushes (medium and fine tip)
  • Potato
  • 44 small eyehooks with a screw end
  • White twine
  • Plain manila envelops
  • Number stencil or timber numbers
  • Craft or timber pegs

advent calendar 1 Items you will need


1. Cut the timber to size – 2 lengths at 75cm and 2 lengths at 120cm – and miter the edges on a 45 degree angle. Use super glue in each corner to hold the frame together and clamp in place or use strong tape until the glue has dried.

2. Once dry, paint the timber frame in Ultracover paint and then two coats of Greyology 1.

advent calendar 2 Create and paint frame

3. Mark out and screw the eyehooks on the inside lengths (we placed these 5cm apart, using 22 hooks per length). Paint the hooks black (optional) or leave gold for a bit of festive bling.

4. Using the black paint, stencil and fine tip paint brush, carefully paint the numbers onto the face of the manila envelopes (tip: the less paint on your brush, the easier you’ll find this step).

advent calendar 5 Painted envelopes

5. Weave the string inside your frame. You’ll need a little bit of patience if you want to do this using just one length of twine and prevent it from knotting. Take it slowly and assist the twine through one section at a time. Alternatively you could cheat a little and use several lengths of twine (just be sure to neatly hide the joining knots behind a hook).

advent calendar 6 Thread string

6. Optional step: to add a bit of extra festive cheer, consider adding some Christmas shapes or images. We made a potato stamp and used Blood Diamond red paint to stamp abstract stars onto several of the packets. You could create any festive shape/s you like and use any pop of colour to suit your theme.

advent calendar 7 Potato stamp

6. Fill your envelopes with treats, these could be small gifts or traditional chocolates, and peg them onto your string frame. Regular timber pegs look great or try these craft pegs for something a little different.

As you remove envelopes in the lead up to Christmas, you could fill the empty space on your advent calendar with your favourite Christmas cards or photos of your family during the festive season. And once the holiday season is over, consider moving this piece into your home office to use as a mood board or organisation board, or keep it in your living room to display photos.

advent calendar 8 Plain packets landscapel

advent calendar 9 Close up plain envelopes

advent calendar 10 Finished advent calendar front on

advent calendar 11 Finished advent calendar portrait

advent calendar 12 Close up finished advent calendar

advent calendar 13 Close up stamp envelopes

Gina shares more Christmas DIY ideas over on the Style Curator blog.