No doubt about it, the Christmas season is the most beautiful time of year. Lights sparkle inside and outside homes, 12 foot Santa Clause figures loom over rooftops and lawns, artificial candles burn in windows, and electric bills soar. It’s easy to get caught up in all the hoopla of the holidays and blow January’s budget on December’s decorations. With a little thinking outside of the box, though, that doesn’t have to happen. Here are some ways you can save on holiday decorations this year.
Assess the situation
First, start with what you have. Most people have plenty of holiday decorations already. It’s great to buy new ones, but remember that you only use them once a year. It doesn’t make much sense to spend a lot of money on something that spends 11 months in a box. If you simply MUST have the latest and greatest blow-up lawn Santa, buy it after Christmas on clearance for next year. It’s likely to be at least half off on December 26.
Stay with a theme
Try to keep the decorations winter themed rather than themed around Santa Claus, Menorahs, or Christmas trees. They get more use that way, and you can enjoy the beauty for all of the winter months, not just until the end of December. Just make sure you take those icicle lights down before May!
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Repurpose the old holiday decorations
Find new life for old decorations. If you have a string of colored lights that you’re not using this year because you want white ones on your tree, put them in a clear glass jar or vase and use them to decorate the foyer or hallway. Wrap them around a banister with some garland. Hang a few ornaments from a lace curtain above the kitchen window or, fill a pretty bowl with ornaments and set it on your coffee table.
Other frugal table decorating ideas using things you already have include a tower of presents (empty boxes wrapped with pretty paper and ribbon), a bowl of plastic fruit mod podged and glittered in silver or gold, baskets of pretty and colorful ornaments, scarves as table runners, and wine glasses with cranberries and candles in them. (Don’t light candles in the wine glasses – you need something more heat proof.)
Only shop cheap
If you really feel like your home needs that extra little “something” that you don’t have, check out the dollar store, thrift stores and virtual garage sale sites for some great deals. Maybe you even know someone you can swap decorations with from year to year to keep things fresh.
Decorating is supposed to be fun, so don’t let it stress you out too much. Ribbons and bows are only a small part of the holidays. The most important things in life aren’t things that go back in a box in the attic in January.
How do you and your spouse save on holiday decorations? I’d love to get more ideas!