Holidays should make you happy, not broke. And though holiday decorations—wreaths, lights, tree ornaments, and the assortment of snowglobes, dancing Santas and Nativity scenes—certainly help set a merry mood today, you won’t feel that merry when your credit card bill arrives.
Here are some money saving tips so you can decorate your home on a small budget. Like all other o5.com’s recipes for life, these tips are concrete and tested.
Money saving tip # 1: switch the lights
Trade your incandescent Christmas lights with LED lights, which are amazingly energy efficient. They use as much as 80% less electricity and even last longer. Yes, a box costs more, but you’ll save more money in the long run.
Money saving tip # 2: use real plants
Organic and natural are all the rage anyway, and in this case, it’s even cheaper. Why not make your Christmas decorations from pine cones and branches from your own backyard, or lining up a row of poinsettia plants on your mantle? Another adorable décor: get bonsai plants or small plants, cluster them on a sidetable or window sill, and hang red berries or miniature ornaments. These look very elegant, too! You can also watch this Youtube video on how to wire pinecones for holiday decor.
Money saving tip # 3: cluster your ornaments
You don’t have to decorate every square inch of your home. Instead, concentrate your efforts on a few key areas, like a corner of your living room or the entry way to your home. A few beautiful and well-placed holiday decorations can create a good impact and save you plenty of money, too.
Money saving tip # 4: Reinvent old Christmas balls
Christmas balls are cheap and can be used in a number of ways. Arrange in a glass cylindrical vase for a gorgeous holiday centerpiece, decorate a wreath, or cluster with pinecones (you can spray paint these in gold or silver) in a basket.
Money saving tip # 5: Use your kids’ toys for decor
Turn your living room into a miniature Santa’s workshop! Wrap old boxes in pretty paper, cluster on the floor, and then prop up the stuffed toys. Or, pile a group of small boxes into a sled. Smaller toys can also be used to decorate the Christmas tree or a Christmas wreath.
Money saving tip # 6: Use picture frames
Place vintage Christmas postcards in small picture frames and hang on the wall. You can also switch the pictures you already have displayed with Christmas family portraits or anything that shows your kids enjoying the holidays—playing in the snow, smiling with Santa, etc.
Money saying tip # 7: Switch the curtains
This is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to transform the feel of a room. Find or make curtains in a holiday color (red, green, a dark gold) that matches the rest of the room’s décor. Then, sew Christmas balls or ornaments into two strips of coordinating ribbon, and use these to tie the curtains back.
Photo from justagirl.typepad.com