A Matchbox Advent Calendar

Kindle the Christmas spirit with this crafty personalized Advent calendar!  I made this calendar for my grandma.  I usually don’t see her until Christmas Eve, so this is a perfect and prayerful way to stay in touch.


24 Matchboxes
5 sheets Christmas-themed Construction and Scrapbook paper
2 Cardboard Squares
Acrylic Paint (red, green or white)
1 Sponge Brush

Glue Gun and Sticks
Elmer’s Craft Glue
Ruler & Pencil
Scotch Tape

24 slips of paper with handwritten or typed messages – prayers, Scripture verses, or words of encouragement to nourish your loved one(s) in the Advent season.


 Step 1: Dump the matches out of 24 matchboxes.  Use acrylic paint and a sponge brush to coat at least half of the inside drawer and outside cover.  Set out to dry.

Step 2: Leave drawers aside.  Use a glue gun to fuse a stack of six matchbox covers.  Make sure the painted sides are facing the same direction.  In the end, you should have four stacks of six matchboxes each.

Step 3:  Form a cube with the four towers.  Each tower should face out a different direction (see picture).  Glue gun towers together.

Step 4: Measure and cut a cardboard top and bottom – but don’t glue them on yet!


Step 5: Measure and cut paper strips for drawer handles and for the bottoms of each drawer.
Number the handles 1-24.  Tape the numbered strips to the bottom of the boxes.  Then, glue in the drawer bottom.
Step 6: Place a personalized message in each drawer.

Step 7:  Decorate the cardboard top and stacks with some craft paper and other embellishments.

Step 8: Glue on the top and bottom, slide in the drawers and Advent away!

Jane Sloan


B. Jane Sloan is a writer and high school theology teacher from Atlanta, GA. In addition to blogging for Catholic Exchange, she has been published in Our Sunday Visitor, Notre Dame Magazine and the literary journal Omnibus. Jane graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2007 with a B.A. in theology and philosophy. In 2009, she graduated with an M. Ed. from Notre Dame's Alliance for Catholic Education. In 2009 Jane made a 500-mile pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in Spain. She spent summer 2010 as an intern planting vegetables and baking bread at the Abbey of Regina Laudis OSB in Bethlehem, CT. In 2011 she was present among the millions at the beatification of Blessed John Paul II. She is currently working toward her M.A. in Theology. Follow her on Twitter @CE_SundayBrunch. Follow her other blog on all-natural eating at www.thesavagepalate.blogspot.com

Subscribe to CE
(It's free)

Go to Catholic Exchange homepage