If you’re like me, you probably missed the boat on the Lego Kingdoms Advent Calendar for the 2010 holiday season. Here in metro Detroit, they’re impossible to come by. That got me and Lego Maniac Rachel Hobson thinking – why don’t we make our own?! I took Rachel up on the challenge and decided to create my own, at about half the price, for some castle-themed advent creations.
Making your own Lego advent calendar isn’t hard. I decided to use the Outpost Attack as the toy that would be created by Christmas. Why? Well, at 194 pieces, it wasn’t too over the top in terms of splitting up the pieces into packets to open each morning. It also happend to be on sale for $17, so when I paired that with supplies I already had on hand at no addtitional cost, my advent calendar was already coming in at half the cost of the original.
Start out by sorting your pieces by each step shown in the instruction guide. That will give you an idea of what you’re working with. Knowing I had just 25 envelopes, I grouped steps together in order. I also had one of my favorite fourth-graders on hand to serve as creative director (and resident Lego expert) as I sorted all the pieces and got ready to add them into their pockets.
Next, fill your envelopes. I used some leftover New Year money envelopes I had, so I just covered them with some construction paper so I could add the days. I tried to pick a kit that didn’t have very big individual pieces – if you find you have some bigger pieces, make sure you have the right size envelope. The catapult was a bit big, so I used the Snoopy envelope (shown above) to make sure it fit. Seal ’em up and get them ready to hang.
It’s up to you what kind of board you want to hang your pockets on. I had a spare fabric-covered canvas I’d made, so I used that. Made out of stretcher bars from the art store, the final size was around 24″ x 24″. Originally I was going to pin the pockets on, but I found using a quilting pin was easier to work with.
Aaaannnddd there you go! Make sure to keep the instruction booklet so your Lego Maniacs know what to do as the month progresses. I included all the Minifigs in one bigger envelope with the instruction booklet when I delivered the calendar as a present.