Gimme Five! Advent calendars

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Selection of 5 advent calendars

Advent starts on Sunday so you only have a couple of days left to get your hands on your advent calendars! They’ve been around since the 19th century and are traditionally used to celebrate the run up to, and prepare for, Christmas Day.

It wasn’t always about scoffing a chocolate a day – although I wholeheartedly agree with that undertaking – the 24 compartments once held a different bible verse, prayer or poem. How about filling them with something different and unique – handmade sweets, a daily artwork, ‘activity’ coupons or individual figures to slowly make up a nativity set? I like the idea of filling each of mine with an advent candle – or little scented tea lights like these from IKEA.

  1. Reusable fabric advent calendar – Christmas tree: £40.76, Etsy
  2. The Advent Calendar – Truffles for Two: £26, Hotel Chocolat
  3. Wooden LED lit advent calendar by The Forest & Co: £29.50, Notonthehighstreet
  4. Wooden Houses advent calendar: £40, John Lewis
  5. Susanne Kaufmann 2015 advent calendar – £99, Liberty

Christmas Countdown: Harrods

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selection of festive Christmas items available at Harrods

Harrods is the most bling-tastic of Christmas shopping destinations! Their post-Christmas sale is one of the most famous ones around – crowds of people queue up for hours then jostle to get through the doors, dashing to grab the best bargains. There’s always a celeb in attendance to open the sale – Victoria Beckham, Eva Longoria, Amanda Holden, Florence & the Machine…

1. hamper | 2. biscuits | 3. gift box

4. advent calendar | 5. bear in a bag

Christmas Countdown: Marks and Spencer

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selection of festive Christmas items available at Marks and Spencer

We’ve blogged about Marks and Spencer a few times in the past – they have some great packaging designed by the likes of Sanna Annukka and Lab Partners. Once again, M&S don’t disappoint!

1. laser cut wooden decorations | 2. log cabin pudding basin

3. ditsy heart mug | 4. Santa’s helpers teapot

5. Santa’s helpers side plate | 6. Spencer Bear advent calendar

7. gingerbread house tin | 8. Swiss biscuit selection tin

9. Joy Viennese tin | 10. winter glow scented candle