DIY Vintage Soda Crate Advent Calendar

Hi everybody! Welcome to day six of my 12 Days of Christmas crafting. Today I have an extra special advent calendar to share with you all! I am going to show you how to make an advent calendar with a vintage coke crate. This advent was a lot of work, but I think the end result is totally worth it. You can find vintage soda crates at your local flea market, or antique festival. I picked this crate up at the flea market in Raleigh. I see the red coke crates the most, but you can find pepsi crates and even some 7up crates every once in a while. This advent calendar is really fun to make, and I loved incorporating the vintage accents in the buttons and holiday seals.

Here’s What You Need:

*Vintage Coke Crate

*1/4″ MDF (24×48″) Get a sheet at home depot

*Craft Paint

*Number Stencils(Martha Stewart Stencils are fantastic)

*Paint Brushes

*Vintage Buttons

*Vintage Christmas Seals

*Small Dowel

*Wood Glue

*Decoupage Medium Matte


*Table saw (This is what we recommend, but you can use a jigsaw or circular saw)

*Band Saw or hand saw

*Sand paper

*Pin Nailer and pin nails



The first thing you need to do is take your measurements. I will provide mine and if you have a coke crate they should match up, but you may need to adjust the measurements if they are off. My little cubbies were 2.5×2.5×3. So my sides needed to be 2&5/16×2&7/8. My front and back pieces were 2&3/8×2&5/16. And my bottom pieces were 2&7/8×1&7/8.  The sides are inset into the front and back pieces. And I took a little off of the dimensions so the boxes would fit a little smoother. So you will need to cut your board into strips. Cut five strips at 2&5/16, and three to four strips at 2&7/8 on the table saw. Then cut your strips into pieces. Cut your 2&5/16 pieces into 48 pieces that are the 2&5/16×2&7/8. Cut 48 pieces that are 2&5/16×2&2&3/8. Then cut your 2&7/8 pieces into 24 pieces that are 2&7/8×1&7/8. So you should have 48 front and back pieces(2&3/8×2&5/16), 48 side pieces(2&5/16×2&7/8) and 24 bottom pieces (2&7/8×1&7/8). Now you are ready to assemble your boxes. Take a front piece and line up a side piece to it inset into the front piece so you will not be able to see the side pieces from the front of the box. Put a couple of nails into the front piece into the side piece. Next, nail the other side to the front. Then, nail the back piece to the sides like you did the front. You should now have all four sides nailed together and an open top and bottom. Now, insert the bottom piece into the bottom. It will be snug, and you may need to tap it with a small mallet. Then put a few nails into the bottom from the sides of each piece near the bottom all the way around. Repeat the process until you have 24 boxes. Now you need to cut the dowel into pieces for the drawer pulls. So, with a band saw or other saw cut 3/4″ pieces of your dowel. Sand the edges smooth. Next, mark where you want the drawer pulls on each box. With a drill bit a tiny bit smaller than the dowel width, drill into the front of the boxes where marked about 1/8″ in. Then put a little wood glue onto the end of the little dowel piece and insert into the hole you drilled into the front. Repeat with other boxes and let dry. Now you need to paint your boxes. I used four colors and painted six boxes in each color. I then painted the insides with an accent color. Using sticky stencils, stencil the numbers onto each box. Once your paint is dry, you can glue your buttons onto the front of your little dowels in the front of your boxes. Once the glue is dry, decoupage your seals onto the boxes. Paint a little decoupage medium onto the front of your box, and a little on the back of your holiday seal. Then apply the seal to the front of the box and smooth out, then paint the decoupage medium on the front of the boxes. Once everything is dry, you are ready to fill up your boxes and use your advent calendar.

I LOVE my new advent calendar! It is so cute and festive! i have it displayed on the bookcase in my living room. This project was such a blast to make! I love the buttons and the seals on the fronts of the boxes! These boxes are a perfect size for those little advent treats! Tuck in a small toy, or a little candy. I hope some of you guys will give this one a try, you’ll love it! If you aren’t handy with power tools, enlist a handy hubby like I do. I like to keep all my limbs in tact. I’ll be back next week with more holiday projects. Until then…

Happy Crafting!

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10 Responses

  1. Love this, great result…what a fun tradition to start. My kids would live to open these each day!

  2. […] DIY Vintage Soda Crate Advent Calendar by My So Called Crafty Life […]

  3. This advent box is so much fun!! And your photographs are wonderful, too! 2 comments on this post?! You need to get out and join the linky parties and show your stuff off! I’d love to make one of these if I could get over my fear of power saws! Just adorable, Ashlee. ;o)

    • Vickie you are adorable! Power saws can be intimidating :) Thanks so much for your sweet comment! I am so glad you enjoyed the post! I have been meaning to venture out to some linky parties this year. Hope to see you back again :)

  4. […] Soda Crate Advent Calendar […]

  5. […] 1) DIY Vintage Soda Crate Advent Calendar – by My So Called Crafty Life […]

  6. I found that school milk cartons work great as boxes. I asked my daughter’s teacher to save her classes’ milk cartons for the day. Now just to figure out how best to cover them. Thanks some inspiration!

  7. […] Vintage Soda Crate Advent Calendar from My So Called Crafty Life […]