This list of 25 funny Elf on the Shelf ideas are all easy to put together and most don’t require any complicated accessories.
This post may contain affiliate links.
The Elf on the Shelf tradition is a fun one that has taken off in these last few years. A little elf on the shelf trivia for you: this fun Christmas tradition was birthed in 2005 when Carol Aebersold and her daughter Chanda Bell published their book “The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition.” Of course, the book came with the famous elf doll. Since then, people have come up with so many fun ideas for hiding places and costumes like Mission Impossible elf and sick elf.
It’s definitely super fun for the kids. And parents can enjoy making it a fun morning surprise. Just wait until you see the kids’ faces when they find Santa’s little helper in a new position or location around the house!
I hope you can make use of some of the fun, creative elf ideas on this list. There are so many more great hiding places for your family elf. I’ve created a FREE printable Elf on the Shelf planner to help you organize your ideas. With this tool, you won’t be stressing every night about where to move the elf.
1- Put Your Elf in Quarantine
If you want a great excuse to not move your elf for a while, just put it in quarantine 😂. Found on Pinterest.
2 – Twister Elf
Get this fun free printable Elf Twister game from Frugal Coupon Living and set up a game with your kids’ favorite figurines. You can take this idea to the next level by pulling out the ol’ Twister mat and playing it with your kids.
3 – Naughty Elf
Kids will love this naughty elf drawing mustaches on their pictures. It only seems right that an elf show a little mischief. Use a dry erase marker to make sure you don’t do any permanent damage. Found on Simple as That Blog.
4 – Frozen Elf
If you have an Elsa figurine, surprise your kids with this frozen elf to make them smile. If you don’t have an Elsa figurine, you can still do this fun arrangement using the backstory that this elf got a little cold in the North Pole. Heads up, this arrangement requires preparation in order for it to be ready the next morning. Origin Unknown.
5 – Elf eating elf spaghetti
If you’re planning on watching the movie Elf, surprise your kids and duplicate the iconic scene from the movie by having your Elf on the Shelf eating sugary spaghetti. But be warned—-Your kids might want to try it! Found on Pinterest.
6 – Elf Conducting a Fruit Choir
I loved this fruit choir idea from the official Elf on the Shelf website. This setup might actually make for a happy mom if it inspires the kids to eat some fruit!
7 – Elf Melting a Snowman
A little spilled milk and some well placed cookies or chocolate chips and you too can have a naughty elf melting a snowman. Found on Pink Peony Home. Such a sneaky little elf. If you don’t want the mess of spilled milk, you can use play dough to sculpt a melted snowman.
8 – Elf Ice Fishing on Toilet Seat
This ice fishing Elf is easy to set up and sure to get the kids to giggle in the morning. The goldfish crackers really take this over the top. Found on I Think We Could Be Friends.
9 – Trickster Elf changing Oreo
This funny Elf on the Shelf is being a little trickster changing the insides of the Oreos with toothpaste. Found on Pinterest. This mischievous elf is not making the nice list.
10 – Elf Candy Cane Treasure Hunt
Kids will be entertained for a while looking for all 12 candy canes that the elf has hidden. Found on KA Inspired. And who doesn’t love a candy cane during the Christmas season?
11 – Elf caught Red Handed in the Nutella Jar
While we’ve all been tempted to put a finger in the Nutella jar, it’s this naughty elf that actually did it! This elf just got caught red handed. Found on Instagram.
12 – Elves in a Balloon Bubble Bath
These elves are sure having a good time in their balloon bubble bath! Heads up, blowing up the balloons will require preparation, so don’t leave this setup for the last minute. You’ll find more ideas like this on Secrets of a Supermom.
13 – Climbing Elf
Set up a bunch of bows or other Christmas decorations on a wall or window like a Christmas climbing wall. Found on Newsday. You can create a whole obstacle course including tire swing and zip line.
14 – Doctor Elf Performing an Operation
The Elf on the Shelf will start the operation but the kids will sure want to finish it. Found on Frugal Coupon Living.
15 – Kidnapped Elf
This kidnapped elf idea from Recipe Magik is just hilarious. This one takes creative ideas to the next level and inspires DIY parents.
16 – Elf makes Sprinkle Angel
I’ve seen a lot of elves making snow angels with flour but if you don’t want your Elf on the Shelf all floured up, a helpful hint is to use sprinkles instead. Less cleanup is required, and it’s more colorful! Found on Flickr. This arrangement can easily be made on a kitchen table or countertop. Also, if you want more of a snow color without the mess, try a box of Rice Krispies cereal.
17 – Car Wash Elf
This little elf is working at the car wash! Found of Pinterest.
18 – Elf’s day at the Spa
Every Elf on the Shelf needs a little quiet time and the chance to become spa day elf. Found on Pinterest.
19 – Elf Roasting S’mores
If you set up with s’more eating elf, be ready to make some for your kids too. Found on Flickr.
20 – Kissing Booth Elf
This kissing booth from DIY Inspired is fun and easy to set up. And what a cute elf it is! These printables could also be used on a gingerbread house kissing booth if you wanted to add a little more.
21 – Elf in Candy Cane Jail
This funny Elf on the Shelf may be in candy cane lockup but he can still see you! Get the free printable on This Mama Loves.
22 – Toy Snow Ball Fight
How fun is this marshmallow snow ball fight between Mr. Potato Head and Elf? My money is on the scout elf! Origin Unknown.
23 – Elf building a Snowman Tree
Introducing the toilet paper snowman elf! This elf came to build a snowman with toilet paper on the tree! When it comes to easy ideas, this one takes the cake. All you need is a roll of toilet paper and some markers. Found on Pinterest.
24 – The End is Here
This is a special elf design because it is for the last day of shelf game shenanigans. This elf makes a fun exit on his last day in the house with an empty toilet paper roll. Found on Flickr.
25 – Fun Elf Goodbye
It’s Christmas day and the Elf is gone until next year! Give your elf a fun send off. Found on Pinterest.
Don’t forget to go download my FREE printable Elf on the Shelf planner. I hope you and your family enjoy some of these great elf ideas this holiday season!