Christmas

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These Elf On The Shelf Pics Will Inspire You When You're All Out Of Ideas

Keep it simple or go all out with these ideas.

If your Elf On The Shelf has been around for a few holiday seasons, you’re probably running out of ideas for what to do with the little pixie each night in December; it’s already sat on every surface, made a mess in the kitchen, and slept all night in the Christmas tree. Fortunately, these Elf On The Shelf pictures will give you fresh new ideas for elf season. Whether you like Santa’s helper to find itself in over-the-top, elaborate scenarios or you’re more likely to remember that you need to move the elf only after you’re finally in bed (relatable), these pictures will inspire you to take your elf game to the next level (because even the lazy Elf On The Shelf ideas are creative).

From going fishing in the toilet, to playing Jenga made from chocolate bars, or taking selfies (or more precisely, elfies) of all his late night shenanigans, these Elf On The Shelf ideas will put a smile on your kid’s face, even when they take you less than two minutes to set up (because the holiday season is busy enough without having to think of 25 ideas). And if you need more inspiration, The Elf On The Shelf Official website also has tons of creative ideas for where to hide your elf along with some printables to make the scene come alive.

1

An Above & Beyond The Elf On The Shelf Idea

This naughty elf took selfies of all his late night antics. From posing with sleeping family members to snapping a pic of himself finishing all the chocolate, this elf is up to no good, but the end result looks fantastic. This is such a clever way to use an Instax camera, plus it’ll be fun to look back on the pictures.

2

A Creative But Quick The Elf On The Shelf Idea

You can’t help but laugh when you look at the grim expression on this carrot’s face. This is a super creative The Elf On The Shelf idea, but it doesn’t require a ton of props or a lot of time to set up. In fact, all you need is a vegetable, a grater, and a Sharpie.

3

A Lazy, Funny The Elf On The Shelf Picture

If you’re about to doze off and you realize with a start that you didn’t move the elf, this funny but super easy The Elf On The Shelf idea will save you. All you need to do to recreate this idea is grab a piece of bread and make little holes for the elf’s arms and legs. Your kids will crack up and it takes under a minute.

4

A Clever The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Turn your elf into a Christmas tree salesman with this clever and easy The Elf On The Shelf idea that uses cookies shaped like trees, a homemade sign, a plate. Plus it’s a fun treat to eat the Christmas tree cookies the next day.

5

A Not Messy The Elf On The Shelf Idea That’s Easy

If you’re looking for a memorable The Elf On The Shelf idea that won’t destroy your kitchen or leave a trail of flour or crumbs everywhere, this cute mini Twister game for those limber elves could be your answer. PositivePaperie has an Etsy store where you can buy a set of 12 cards, like this Twister board, which will help create all sorts of fun elf scenes.

6

A Naughty The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Here’s another easy Elf On The Shelf idea that uses a card from PositivePaperie. Here the naughty elf goes fishing in the toilet using a candy cane fishing rod. The simple scene will only take a few minutes to come together, but it will create a big impact (just make sure it’s not fishing in the bathroom your kid uses at night).

7

An Over-The-Top The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Get your elf in on the winter fun by creating a realistic ski scene. Flour or powdered sugar makes great snow, popsicle sticks are the perfect size for elf skis, and these cute poles are made using mini marshmallows. A pencil eraser or your finger works well for making ski tracks in the snow.

8

A Funny Elf On The Shelf Idea That Incorporates Other Toys

Ah, who doesn’t love a spa day? It’s always fun to involve other toys in your The Elf On The Shelf scene (and it’s good to know that elves can wear Barbie clothes in a pinch). Here the elf and the doll are kicking back and relaxing with a good old face mask and some teeny cucumber slices.

9

A Silly Elf On The Shelf Idea

Take your elf for a wild ride by hanging it from a ceiling fan pull (or on the fan itself). Elves are super flexible so they can hang upside down if you tie them just right. You could even turn the fan on for an extra funny effect.

10

A Quick & Easy Elf On The Shelf Idea

If you spent all night wrapping and forgot to move the elf, fear not. There are plenty of easy last minute The Elf On The Shelf ideas that still deliver on fun. Here, the unruly elf drew a smiley face in toothpaste, an idea which would also work well with shaving cream (which is a little easier to clean).

11

A Fun & Scary The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Oh no, things are looking rough for the elf. If you want to shock and delight your kids, set up a scene using toy soldiers or plastic animals, and tie the elf to a chair. And good luck to you in getting the elf down without touching it (and be sure to have cinnamon on hand in case your hand grazes the elf and your kid flips out).

12

A Hilarious The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Kids won’t be able to contain their laughter when they see their elf hanging out in a pair of underwear. It kind of looks like Santa’s little helper is hang gliding, and this would be especially silly if it hung from a ceiling fan so the elf could go for a ride.

13

A Totally Amazing Elf On The Shelf Idea

I almost don’t have words for this totally over-the-top and amazing Elf On The Shelf idea. If you don’t have a ton of time or spare wrapping paper, you could pare down this idea and try wrapping a pillow or a smaller chair or framed picture, which will still give this totally cool effect. If you look closely, you’ll see the mischievous elf propped up in two empty rolls.

14

An Easy The Elf On The Shelf Idea That Makes A Big Impact

If you have some Goldfish crackers in the pantry and some string (or better yet, a fishing rod from a kids magnetic fishing game), you have what it takes to set up a sweet The Elf On The Shelf scene. Here, all it takes is some plates and bowls to make it look like your little pixie is really sitting by the river catching dinner.

15

A Unique The Elf On The Shelf Idea

When in doubt, roll your elf up in a burrito wrap. Seeing it’s little face peeking out of the tortilla is so surprising and funny, and it will take your kids awhile to find it. Plus it looks like a comfy sleeping bag so your little guy gets a good night’s rest.

16

A Super Creative The Elf On The Shelf Idea

How cool and ornate is this The Elf On The Shelf school setup? Every detail here is so over-the-top, right down to the laptop screen that shows actual little elves doing remote school. Dollhouse furniture and accessories (or even Barbie stuff) works great for setting up a whole little world.

17

A Creative & Cute The Elf On The Shelf Idea

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The only thing that could be better than your elf making a snow angel out of colorful Christmas sprinkles would be your elf wearing this amazing pink furry coat. From Creative Cakes By Jenny comes this sweet The Elf On The Shelf idea and if you don’t have sprinkles on hand you could use flour or even uncooked rice.

18

A Funny Pop Culture Elf On The Shelf Idea

Fans of Survivor will instantly recognize this as Tribal Council (I love how the candle is the bonfire). If you’re not a Survivor-watching house, you can recreate a scene from one of your kids favorite shows or movies.

19

An Easy & Creative The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Beep beep elves coming through. This holiday season should look a bit more normal than last year, but many of us will still be wearing masks when out, and it’s nice to see the elves doing their part (you can find tiny face masks for The Elf On The Shelf at many online stores). Don’t forget the little trees to put on top of the car (mini Cozy Coupes are hard to find, but any small car will work).

20

A Silly & Memorable The Elf On The Shelf Idea

Scout Elf is super playful and loves chocolate, so why not combine the two and have them play a game of Jenga made out of Kit Kat bars? This is super creative but won’t take a ton of time. and you’ll get some candy out of the deal.