The first step into winter wonderland has to be an advent calendar. Come December you'll feel that there's something missing if you haven't bought one, and it's never quite the same buying one after the Christmas count-down begins. We've featured a selection of the best ones currently on offer, available on a high-street near you.

13D Christmas scene with 90-minute tape of carols, pounds 5.50. Father Christmas at home packing his sleigh for his annual big night out. From Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, London W1 (0171-629 1234).

2Fabric advent hanging, The Paragon Collection Ltd, pounds 39.99. Father Christmas in shorts and shades lurks behind an empty tree which is decorated as the days go by with the little sea creatures, pineapples and chickens hidden in the numbered pockets. Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, London

(0171-629 1234).

3 Musical Christmas tree, pounds 9.99 Electronic Christmas carols on tap when you pull the star up. Paperchase branches nationwide (0171-636 1333).

4Reusable woodland Christmas advent book, pounds 9.99. Marie Angel's beautiful illustrations show woodland animals setting off for a little local carol singing. Published by Templar, available from bookshops and by mail order from Ragged Bears (01264-772269)

53-D musical fireplace, Paperchase, pounds 9.99. Pop-up calendars are always popular and this year it seems they must be musical too. Pull the boots down from the chimney and into the fireplace and a piercing version of Jingle Bells strikes up. Paperchase branches nationwide (0171-636 1333).

6Pop-up Nativity Scene, Liberty, pounds 7.50. This large musical calendar gets the kitsch vote. A softly smiling Mary gazes down at Jesus while Joseph clutches her hand, surrounded by beaming locals and reverential Wise Men. All to the accompaniment of Silent Night. Liberty, Regent Street, London W1 (0171-734 1234).

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