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How to make ‘adorable’ eco-friendly DIY Advent houses – ‘low-cost’ Christmas decorations

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How to make ‘adorable’ eco-friendly DIY Advent houses – ‘low-cost’ Christmas decorations


Advent calendars are a great way to build up to Christmas Day, but if you’re looking for something a little bit different, eco-friendly influencer Kate has a DIY craft to decorate your home and make use of items you might otherwise throw away. Kate runs the Instagram and TikTok pages @my_plastic_free_home, as well as the Natural Living Shop (@thenaturallivingshop) which sells an array of environmentally-friendly, all-natural products.

Her DIY Advent houses repurpose old cardboard boxes or product packaging to create small, festive packages which can be opened in the 24 days leading up to Christmas.

They are also a great way to get the family involved. Kate said: “This was so much fun to make last year. The children loved it.” You can use coloured pencils to decorate the front, as well as any items you have laying around. In Kate’s case, she used some old buttons to embellish the houses.

Each of the houses also needs to be secured with string, so that you can hang them somewhere in your home. Her video has been “liked” 2,512 times so far, with commenters sharing their opinions on the tiny houses.

A user posting under the name @cooneynest said: “Just adorable Kate. I’m on a mission to keep costs down with decor and recycling pieces I have.”

Another commenter named Sydney said: “Just brilliant. They take my breath away every time Kate.”

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Pop a pin through the top edge of each of the flaps to create a hole for your string to be tied through. Next, it’s time to decorate the exterior of your houses. If using plain cardboard, a white pencil can be used to draw on roof tiles, a front door and some windows.

Then, fold your houses into position. The 9cm flaps should be on the inside, with the 10cm flaps folding up and over these to create the shape of the building. Thread your string through the holes to secure it. If you don’t have string, Kate said: “To seal each advent house, you can tie, glue or tape the sides.”

You can also thread decorative items onto the string for a little embellishment, such as old buttons or a small bell. Kate also made a clay decorative charm, engraved with the date for each house to be opened. However, you could simply write the date on the front of each house.

The houses can be opened up to pop a small gift, such as chocolate, inside and then on each day you can remove the string to reveal your Advent treat.

How to make the decorative clay charms

The clay charms can be made using two simple household ingredients – cornflour and bicarbonate of soda. To make the charms, preheat the oven to 140C and then mix a half cup of cornflour with one cup of bicarbonate of soda and three-quarters of a cup of water.

Heat the mixture until the consistency of mashed potatoes and leave to cool. Dust your surface with cornflour, roll out until the thickness of five millimetres and cut your shapes. At this point, you can also create a small hole to place the string through using a skewer. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, turning halfway.

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