It’s slowly getting Christmassy and we can’t wait to get the boxes of Christmas decorations out of our little storage room and decorate the office. But before we put up and decorate the Christmas tree, we should plan the Advent decorations. Our team decided that this year, instead of an Advent wreath, each of us will make an Advent spiral for home. For this, we have chosen two craft projects and organized a small competition so that we can choose the most beautiful Advent spiral at the end of November. Would you also like to participate? Here we summarize the different ideas including instructions, so that you can also find a suitable one.
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What is actually the Advent spiral?
If you’ve never heard of an Advent spiral, you’ll probably stare at the word. The Advent Spiral is actually just an alternative to the Advent wreath, noting not only the Sundays of Advent, but all the days leading up to Christmas. The idea comes from Waldorf education and is most popular in Waldorf and Montessori schools and kindergartens. And since some of us have children, we find this variant of Advent decoration both interesting and educational.
The principle behind the Advent spiral is simple. You make a spiral from the chosen material and design it with 24 hollows. In the center of the spiral is a candle, which is lit every day. The countdown starts on December 1 or on the first Sunday of Advent, and for each day that has passed, a small object is placed in the corresponding hollow. This can be, for example, natural treasures such as acorns or small stones, seeds or cones, and so on. Small marbles or the like are also just as suitable. So you start at the outer end of the spiral and put the last object in on December 24.
What can you make an Advent spiral out of? The ideas with instructions
Now that you already know what an Advent spiral is, let’s get to the ideas on how to make them yourself. You can find ready-made spirals online, for example, made of wood. For DIY, this material is less suitable, because it is not so easy to process. Instead, we have found a few craft ideas from simpler materials that we and you can easily replicate at home.
Advent spiral craft – from salt dough or modeling clay
For the classic Advent spiral you can use homemade salt dough or simply modeling clay. For the second variant, it is best to choose air-drying clay. It is easy to work with and always gives good results. However, we are sure that real craft enthusiasts would choose the DIY variant. After all, good salt dough is just as good as modeling clay and can also be made at home from simple ingredients.
For the salt dough you will need the following:
- 2 cups (250 g) flour
- 1 cup (275 g) salt
- 1 cup (250 ml) of water
- Mixing bowl and spoon
- If you are preparing salt dough, mix flour, salt and water in a bowl until a dough is formed.
- Then knead the dough with your hands and roll it out on the table. Do the same with the purchased craft clay.
- Roll the dough or clay into a sausage shape and then roll it into a spiral. (You can place the spiral directly on the bottom of a baking pan for easy movement as it dries).
- Use the bottom of a candle to make troughs along the spiral. Note: If you start the Christmas countdown on December 1, you will need 24 holes, but if you start with the first Sunday of Advent, you will need to adjust the holes. (This year you would need 28 troughs).
- The spiral then needs to dry in a warm, dry place for a few days. You can also put it in the oven on the lowest setting from time to time to speed up the process. Tip: The dough may shrink a bit as it dries, so it’s worth tucking the candles into the wells every so often to make sure they keep their size.
- When the material is stiff enough to move without going limp (it can take anywhere from 24 hours to a few days), you can move the spiral to where you want it and decorate it however you like. For example, place evergreen leaves and twigs around and under the spiral and provide crystals, beads, or small natural materials to cover the indentations for the past few days.
During Advent, take a moment each day to light your candles and reflect on what Christmas means to you. If you have children, you can prepare different Christmas stories for each day and tell your young ones more about the holiday.
More ideas to create and decorate
The best part of this decoration is that you can get creative yourself and give the spiral a personal touch. Any idea will do. We will certainly try these mini candles in acorn caps! Maybe someone will come up with an even more interesting idea. Let’s see.
Combining Advent wreath and Advent spiral
Classically, the Advent Spiral has only one candle, but you can also make a combination of both Advent decorations yourself by placing a candle instead of an object in the hollow every Advent Sunday.
Simple idea: make Advent spiral with tea lights
A few of our colleagues who don’t like crafting so much have decided to make a simpler version of the Advent spiral. All you need are enough tea lights, a base such as a tray and a few small decorations to decorate the spiral. To make this Advent spiral stable, we recommend that you make a base for the tea lights out of salt dough here as well.
We are eagerly waiting for the coming Christmas season!