Have you heard of Living advent calendars? This is a new trend for advent calendar windows that’s been gaining popularity over the last few years.
Creating a trail of living advent calendar windows in your neighbourhood is a fun and creative way for communities to join together to celebrate the festive season, the season of Advent throughout the month of December.
What is a living advent calendar?
A living advent calendar involves houses in a street or neighbourhood taking it in turns to unveil a new window decoration each day during the month of December.
Like opening a door on a traditional advent calendar each day, in the living advent calendar there will be a new window display to uncover each day as you walk along your road or search in the neighbourhood.
This idea takes a bit of coordination and cooperation between neighbours so it is a great way to build that community spirit and get to know one another.
How to Organise a Living Advent Calendar for your Street or Area
You will need to assign everyone taking part a date to unveil their own advent window display.
Ideally you will have 24 houses taking part, but you can also work with more. If you have more than 24 houses wanting to join in then you can just allocate two or three houses per day, so that no-one misses out on being part of this festivity.
It can help to use the neighbourhood WhatsApp or Facebook group to organise, and to create a Facebook group or page to advertise the trail so that other local families can follow along and look out for your decorated windows.
If the participating families include their advent number somewhere in the window display, this makes it easier for other families to keep track as they follow along.
Ideas for your Advent Calendar Windows
Here are a few ideas to give you some inspiration to take part in this Advent calendar windows trend and be a part of your street advent calendar window display.
Its such a fun way to share creativity and holiday spirit and the best part is that everyone’s window will be unique and different as each household puts their own individual twist on it.
Making an Advent window for your house doesn’t need to be complicated or overwhelming. Sometimes the simple ideas can look extremely effective!
Here are a few examples from previous years to help you on your way.
These houses are from the Bristol area, supplied by our Bristol based contributor Helen.
If you would like to share pictures of your street’s advent calendar window displays please do send them in and we will happily add them for everyone to get inspired.
Silhouette Window Display
One of the most popular ways to create a window display is to go with the stained glass window look. Using black paper combined with coloured tissue paper you can put together some effective scenes in this way, like this nativity scene with sheep and an angel
Or this one with a donkey, manger and the Virgin Mary.
Stained Glass Street Advent Calendar Window Display
You could co-ordinate all of the front facing windows of your house to create a large scale stained glass effect when viewed from the street.
This house used the stained glass effect and included characters from Frozen, which is sure to get little ones excited as they spot Anna, Elsa, Olaf and even the Water Nokk from Frozen 2
This house made a beautiful stained glass display using bold sections of colour.
Use Words of Hope, Peace and Love in your Window Display
We could all do with a message of Hope after the past few difficult years we have been through.
Adding words of hope or peace to your display is a lovely way of sharing positivity with the neighbourhood community, and uplifting each other.
Festive words to include could be Hope, Love, Peace, Joy, or Merry Christmas. I’m sure you can think of even more.
Snowmen Window Display
Snowmen offer a less religious option and a theme that is fun and appealing for children in particular.
This house added paper snowflakes and hand prints for a personalised touch. It’s fun and easy to get the kids involved to create your window displays and they will be so proud to see everyone enjoying the finished results.
Or this snowman window display with cotton wool ball snow, and fun scarves on each snowman.
Use Children’s Colouring Pages to Decorate the windows
Print out some festive Christmas colouring pages and have the kids colour and decorate them with lots of love and care, and these will make a beautiful hand made decoration for your window display.
Christmas Tree Advent Window Displays
Another great option is to go with a Christmas tree theme.
You can achieve this with a real Christmas tree displayed in your front window,
Or by crafting a Christmas tree shape like this one which is also combined with colourful fairy lights.
Some options you can use to craft a Christmas tree for the window display are green construction paper, or felt.
Or you can make your own decorative tree from sticks and branches, and hang all kinds of Christmas ornaments and lights. There are so Many options.
Use Wrapping Paper to Decorate the Window
Another simple option to decorate your window for the street advent calendar is to use wrapping paper, or to create a scene with window stickers
You could make Christmas lights the focus of your Advent window, like these houses
Using a light projector is another great option, you can have snowflakes or other festive displays moving across your house.
Making paper snowflakes is one of the most traditional Christmas crafts of childhood.
If you make plenty you will have enough to fill your whole window and make a beautiful display for advent.
You could also try making Mickey Mouse snowflakes using our free printable templates
Santa and his Reindeer Flying Across the Sky Window Scene
What could be more iconic than Santa and his reindeer flying across the sky on Christmas night, proudly led by Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.
You can use a sheet to create a background for your scene, then add the elements of the picture using coloured card or paper.
This house takes the Santa display across two windows, using a stained glass effect.
Other Christmas Symbols to Include
While nativity, Santa or snowmen are some of the most popular Christmas symbols – maybe you want to go for something a little different.
How about a Christmas pudding, a candle, holly, mistletoe toes or Christmas bells.
All of these are very traditional and festive, but less commonly thought of and may give you less duplication in your neighbourhood.
How about a robin sitting on top of a garden spade?
You could also choose one specific scene from the nativity to illustrate, like this house who went for the Three Kings carrying Gold Frankincense and Myrrh as gifts for the Baby Jesus
This was done to incorporate their number 3 in the advent calendar. You can definitely take inspiration from your number, if that helps any ideas pop up.
We hope you enjoyed all of these festive windows that these local houses had put together as part of a Living Advent Calendar community project.
After checking out all of these window advent calendar ideas, maybe you would like to start one of these in your area?
Do you need some help with your window display? We have a few printable templates that can help you with your Christmas crafts, including your advent window display.
Print the Christmas craft templates from these blog posts and cut them out to help guide you to the shape you need
These templates are shown in the context of other crafts but they are super versatile and can be used for anything that you need.
Buy Window Stickers and Decorations
Using Christmas window stickers or window clings or spray snow, is an easy way to decorate your window at short notice.
Here are a few that you can order on Amazon (affiliate links included)VEYLIN Xmas Window Clings Decoration, 141 Static Snow Flakes Stickers Merry Christmas Window Decals for Christmas Party Supplies (8 Sheets) 400 Pcs Christmas Window Stickers 12 Sheets Reusable Christmas Window Decorations Gnome Christmas Decorations for Windows Gonk Window Christmas Decorations Home Office Classroom Christmas Theme Party Outus 570 Pieces Christmas Window Clings Christmas Snowflake Decal Stickers Window Clings Decorations for Christmas Frozen Theme Party New Year Supplies, 12 Sheets(White) Party-Poter Christmas Window Stickers Reusable 262Pcs Christmas Decorations for Windows Xmas Window Stickers Snowman Reindeer Christmas Window Clings Xmas Thamed Party Decor
More DIY Advent Calendar Ideas
Would you like to make your own advent calendar for the kids, as well as your street display? Check out these easy and fun ideas for kids of all ages.
These are simple and affordable ways to create Christmas magic and memories with your family!
If you enjoyed this blog post, please go ahead and share with friends and family or pin to your Pinterest Boards.
Anna Marikar, mum of four and seasoned blogger, has spent over a decade sharing her parenting journey and passion for kid-friendly crafts and free printables.
Her easy-to-follow craft ideas and practical parenting advice have transformed In The Playroom into a cherished resource for parents.