Loving Husband Surprises His Wife With 7.5-Foot-Tall Advent Calendar

by Laura Caseley
Laura is a writer, illustrator, and artist living in New York City.

If you’ve ever had an Advent calendar for the days leading up to Christmas, you know how much fun it is to get a little surprise every day, opening those tiny doors to reveal a miniature toy or a wee piece of chocolate.

If you were patient (or had parents who enforced patience), then you got to have a tiny present every day.

No matter what style your advent calendar — whether it was the cardboard kind, a treasured family heirloom, or maybe even a DIY muffin-tin kind — it was probably relatively small. After all, it’s 24 days of presents — how big could it possibly get?

Well, if you’re Benjamin Hewins of London, big. Like, really big.

Hewins built a massive Advent calendar by hand, then placed a gift behind each of its 24 hinged doors.

And all 24 gifts were for his wife.

“She is quite creative and is always making me cool things, so I wanted to do something for her this year that was a bit quirky, creative, and original,” Hewins said.

Using plywood, power tools, and lots of paint, he created a completely handmade, totally customized Advent calendar that’s making him the envy of gift-givers everywhere.

Check out how he created this incredible Advent calendar below, and get some inspiration for next Christmas!

[H/T: Distractify, Metro]


Londoner Benjamin Hewins wanted to make this Christmas extra-special for his wife, and that meant going big — really big.

He started his outsized Advent calendar by constructing the back panel, and he looks quite excited!

Then it was time to create the front panel, which would have the doors. This meant he had to cut out shapes for all 24 compartments.

Of course, there were plenty of tea breaks, with Hewins going for green.

Hewins opted for irregular shapes on his Advent calendar, which gave the final product a fun and quirky style while keeping it from looking too boxy.

The cutout shapes were saved, as they would become the doors to the compartments.

The presents would also need something to rest on inside the calendar, so some shelves were attached to the back panel.

Then the front panel, with the holes, was placed on top.

Hewins then attached boards to the sides to close everything up.

Just take a moment to appreciate how large this thing is. It’s 2.3 meters, which is well over six feet.

Hewins also knows it isn’t “perfect,” but that’s fine with him. “I got loads of cheap stuff from my local DIY store, went home, and literally winged it from stage to stage.”

Then it was time to put the doors on. They were attached with a hinge and a little knob was added so they could be opened easily.

And you can’t have an advent calendar without some kind of seasonal scene, so Hewins got to sketching out his design.

He opted for penguins, complete with festive hats, booties, and mittens.

Lots of happy, vaguely potato-shaped penguins.

Then he added in a wintry, snowy background, and the calendar was done!


Into each compartment he placed a present. And this wasn’t a dinky piece of chocolate, either. This was a full-sized present, each one for his wife!

He said he was actually inspired by her: Last year, she’d left him a present every day with a note reading, “On the [xth] day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…”

She was understandably pleased with her surprise.

“She got quite emotional and overwhelmed,” Hewins said. “The last time I got that reception was when we were dating and I wrote a poem for her, which I then got printed on a T-shirt. I presented it to her in our local Pizza Hut and she cried her eyes out and made all the other customers very uncomfortable as they tucked into their stuffed crusts.”

Now she’ll have a present every day until Christmas, and if this project is any indication of Hewins’ dedication and generosity, his Christmas Day surprise will probably be just astounding.

This is certainly an awesome Christmas surprise. But watch out, Benjamin Hewins. You’re going to have to top this next year!

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