Handmade Holidays: Advent Wreath {Box}

Hey, friends!  How many of you all celebrate Advent?  I grew up in a very traditional church where we went through the church calendar, so I was very familiar with the idea of Advent from an early age.  Now, we go to a very opposite-of-traditional church where the pastor is introducing the idea to many people for the very first time.

In case you’ve never heard of it, Advent is a four-week period leading up to Christmas that focuses on preparing for the coming of Christ.  In one sense, we prepare our hearts to remember and celebrate the incarnation on Christmas Day.  But we also look forward to when He will come again.  Many people celebrate by lighting candles in a wreath of some sort…typically there are four around the outside, one for each of the four weeks of preparation, and one in the center which is a Christ candle to be lit on Christmas Eve/Day.  Some traditions assign colors to the candles {usually three purple, one pink, and white in the center} and some give the candles particular meanings, but the universal idea is to set aside time to reflect and repent and prepare our hearts to celebrate Jesus’ coming.

{Credit to Megan Walker @megmwalk for the photo!}

Here, you can see our church’s setup last Sunday morning, complete with the really cool giant advent wreath that our worship leader, Joe, constructed from wood.

We always have an advent wreath in our home each year too, so that we can light the candles and celebrate as a family.  This is the one we used last year; our friends bought us the gold base and I wrapped the berries around it.

This year, we got to participate in a really fun event called Igniting Advent where we were given the opportunity to make a gorgeous advent box and let me tell you, I love it for so many reasons!  One is that since the candles are in mason jars, I don’t have to worry about wax dripping all over my table!  Another is that it’s just so pretty!  And I love having the words on it!  I love everything about it…including that I can use battery operated votives and you can’t really even tell.

The even was run by Music With Monte family ministries, and Monte himself did the hard part of breaking down old pallets and constructing the boxes themselves.  I can’t give you a tutorial for that because I have no idea how he did it…but I’m sure some of you crafty-with-wood and pallet types can figure it out.  Here’s what you need to do the rest:

– wooden box
– four small mason jars
– one large mason jar
– five votive candles
– dried corn or beans
– stencils {Monte printed words out on cardstock and painstakingly cut them out to create stencils for us.  Those of you with Silhouettes, well…you know what to do}
– Sharpie markers
– cut greens
– ornaments or berries {optional}

Each family gathered our materials.  The first step was to put corn in each jar to act as a stabilizer for the candles.  That was Little Crafter’s fave job.

While one person is doing that, someone else can stencil the words onto each side of the box using the permanent marker.  Of course, you could use paint or vinyl too.  Ours says “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” and “Believe.”  You can also use other words, like Rejoice, Peace, Faith, Hope, Love, Prepare, Savior, Jesus is Coming, or anything you can think of!

Once the box is stenciled, arrange your jars inside and fill in the spaces with greens and ornaments or berries.  That’s it!

I absolutely love it, and I love that so many people from our church family made the same box and are gathering around it each day…it reminds us how connected we all are.  What are some of your family’s favorite traditions?


Love and glitter,

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  1. Very wonderful..I have heard of advent but for some reason it was never celebrated in my family or church but I’m thinking it should. Thanks so much!

  2. LOVE it! Hmmm….where could I find a box like that? I would make this arrangement if I could locate one. I guess I could check our local craft stores. Simply beautiful! Christmas blessings~~angela

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