How to make a festive Christmas Eve box

This is a collaborative post with Sainsbury’s

Want to know how a Christmas Eve box can sprinkle a little extra festive fun on your family celebrations?

Christmas Eve boxes are a relatively new trend which have been growing rapidly in the UK. 

A Christmas Eve box is usually a wooden crate or cardboard box containing a selection of goodies which are gifted to the lucky recipient on, well, Christmas Eve!

While they are mainly put together for kids, Christmas Eve boxes are also handed out to grown-up members of the family too. It’s really down to you and what traditions you want to start for your own family!

Where did the idea for Christmas Eve boxes come from?

While the exact origin of the Christmas Eve box is unclear, it does seem to be related to the German tradition of opening gifts on Christmas Eve. 

Christmas Eve box - how to put together an amazing festive Christmas Eve box for childrenChristmas Eve box - how to put together an amazing festive Christmas Eve box for children

In fact, our royal family opens all of their gifts on Christmas Eve, so maybe we’ve just taken inspiration from the Queen!

The idea of popping a few gifts in a box for Christmas Eve began to snowball in the UK just a few years ago and now is a key way for many family’s to heighten the festive experience.

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Some families open theirs just before the kids go to bed, in the hope it appeases their excitement for a short while so they can get some sleep! Others may open them right at the start of the day, especially if the box contains games you can play as a family. 

Why give a Christmas Eve box?

This is the first year I’ve put together a Christmas Eve box for the girls and I just love the idea of giving them a little more excitement before the big day. 

This has been the most insanely busy Christmas season for me yet! My eldest daughter started school in September this year and there have been so many events, special days, plays and fairs to remember. 

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So you may think adding another “to do” to my lengthy list is a little bonkers, but actually I realised that putting together the Christmas Eve box doesn’t have to be hard. In fact I managed to do mine during a weekly shop around Sainsbury’s!

What I love about the Christmas Eve box is the way it just adds to all of the excitement. Plus, the items that are most popular for a Christmas Eve box are inexpensive and you probably would buy them as a festive gift anyway, such as Chocolate and socks. 

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The kids are already buzzing for Christmas. Even just the idea of it has sent them into an uncontrollable hyperactive mode that I’m sure won’t die down until long after New Year!

But the thing is, that’s what I’m loving the most about Christmas now that I have kids. Watching them be excited, happy and surprised is the absolute best gift for me. 

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So I’ve partnered with Sainsbury’s to show you how to put together a fabulous festive Christmas Eve box your kids, or whoever you want to put one together for, will absolutely love.

I love the selection of goodies I found for the kids, and I know they will be absolutely thrilled on Christmas Eve.   

What to put in your Christmas Eve box

To start with you need a box, or a gift bag. There are some beautiful wooden or cardboard boxes you can purchase from Sainsbury’s. 

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A wooden reusable box is a great idea as you will use it year after year. You can also personalise it with stencils spelling our your children’s names and/or stickers. 

How much to put in your Christmas Eve box is totally up to you! For me personally, I’m happy with some festive PJs, a chocolatey treat and a pair of fluffy socks. 

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Here’s a list of simple but fun ideas for your Christmas Eve box: 

Festive PJs

Christmas is all about comfort and being cosy. There’s nothing more comforting and cosy than a new pair of PJs. 

Christmassy socks

Socks have had a bad reputation as an unimaginative festive stocking filler. But actually having a cosy pair of socks with Santa, or your child’s favourite cartoon character, will definitely spark joy on Christmas Eve!

Festive jumper

The brighter and crazier the better! You could go for a set of matching family jumpers, or pick out whatever you think your child would like best. It will be perfect for wearing on the big day, and staying cosy!

Chocolate or sweets

Is it even Christmas if you don’t have a Cadbury selection box? For me it certainly wouldn’t be, but we all have our own favourite festive treats we just love to share at this time of year. 

Activity book

Whether it’s an annual from their favourite TV show or a Christmassy activity book, this is a great way of keeping them occupied until the big day! My two are so impatient for the presents to happen right now, that anything that can provide a little distraction is a good thing.  

Hot chocolate and mug 

Find a Christmassy mug and hot chocolate combo and then everyone could have a cup of hot chocolate before bedtime on Christmas Eve. 

A Christmas-themed game

Pick a game you can all play together as a family either on Christmas Eve or on Christmas Day! Sainsbury’s has lots of festive games that will a wonderful finishing touch to your box of goodies. 

Cuddly toy 

It could be a cuddle Santa or it could be one of your child’s favourite cartoon characters. Pick something they will love to snuggle up with when they go to bed on Christmas Eve. You never know, it might actually make them want to go to sleep quicker!

Bath toy 

I think this is a really nice idea as its something they will use all year round. You could try to find a rubber duck dressed as Santa!

Christmas book

Look for a Christmassy story that you can read to your children at bedtime. If you want your kids to get some sleep, I suggest a book that calms them rather than a noisy book that directs them to bounce all over the room!


Make it a Christmas one. If you don’t already have a copy of Frozen, then pop one in your Christmas Eve box immediately!


This will go perfectly with the DVD!

Hair bands and clips

There are some seriously cute reindeer hair clips in my local Sainsbury’s. There are also reindeer antler headbands which are perfect for wearing on Christmas Day!

A letter from Santa 

Why not put together a letter from Santa? You can do it on your computer, add a jazzy font and some red and blue clipart. The note could mention a few amazing things the kids have done this year and add that Santa will be back after they go to sleep with all their Christmas Day presents. 

Treats to leave out for Santa 

You could add Santa’s mince pie to the Christmas Eve box, unless you think your kids might just eat it themselves!

Reindeer food 

You might have the ingredients for this in your kitchen cupboard already! Mix together some oats and wild bird seed and pop into a little pouch. Add a DIY label for a special touch. Tell your kids the food needs to be sprinkled outside your front door before going to sleep so that the reindeer have something to eat on their travels. 

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So there you have it! All of the ideas you will need for putting together your very own Christmas Eve box! I hope you found some inspiration here and that you have an amazing time putting together your own Christmas Eve box.

Merry Christmas!