Christmas is most definitely the best time of the year. It is also the most expensive and the most decorative. How is one to decorate on a budget? Here are a few suggestions:
Christmas Card Decorating
Christmas cards are always a plus during the season, but they often end up being placed on the counter or in a box and never looked at again. Instead of throwing the cards aside or using them for one season, here are a couple ways to use them as decorations.
Christmas cards remind everyone how much they are appreciated and loved, and they are seasonal with seasonal scenes. So why not use them to add a touch of holiday cheer to a entry way? For this idea the items needed are:
- Christmas Cards (present and past)
- Holiday ribbon or curling ribbon in holiday colors
- Garland, string, or large holiday colored ribbon
- Two nails (more if needed, especially if using heavy garland) or good quality hanging hooks
- A Hammer
- A Single Hole Puncher
- Decide which doorway to hang the garland, string or ribbon
- Place two nails at each end of the doorway, using the hammer to secure them into the wall.
- Once the nails are in place, hang the garland on top of the nails. Pull the middle part of the garland down a bit in order to have it hang right above the door or about an inch below the top part of the entry way (If using ribbon or string, tie each side around the nail or hook, pull the middle down a bit). Leave the sides long about 6 inches away from the floor, depending on how many Christmas cards will be used.
- Punch holes in the folding end of the cards. Try to have the cards facing the same direction.
- Cut a 4-6 inch long piece of ribbon, and string through the card. Tie around the garland, and repeat with each card until all the cards are used. Place new cards on the garland as they come in.
- Another way to do this with string or curling ribbon is:
- Do steps 1 and 2
- Tie a double knot in one end of the string or curling ribbon.
- Punch a hole in the top folding corner of each card. Be sure they are facing the same direction.
- Using the non-knotted side of the ribbon or string, place cards onto the strig one by one until done.
- After the cards are all on the string, tie the end in a double knot around the nail.
- Lift the other end up to the other nail, untie, and tie a double knot around the nail.
- To make this easier, it may be better to tie one end in a double knot around the nail or hook prior to stringing the cards on.
Something else that is real easy to do, is:
- Punch a hole in the top folded end of the cards
- String ribbon through and tie in a bow or knot.
- Place on Christmas Tree.
- This way the cards become part of the tree decorations. All of this is real easy, does not require alot of going out to the store and finding extra items, and adds more Christmas charm to the home.
Decorate with Candy Canes
Candy Canes can be used to add an instant touch of holiday cheer to the kitchen, a table, or the tree. For a quick easy decorating idea:
- Find a clear glass jar
- Tie a red ribbon (about an inch or 2 thick) around the top of the jar.
- Place candy canes around the rim of the jar, with the long end inside the jar.
- Place the jar on a counter or a table.
- Candy canes can become tree decorations as well. Instead of just using a candy cane as a decoration, make candy cane reindeers. All that is needed is:
- Bottled Glue (such as Elmer’s), super glue can also be used, just be extremely careful to use a little and not touch it.
- A red or brown pom pom for the nose (if making several, use one red as the Rudolph and the rest brown)
- Brown pipe cleaners for antlers
- Black pom poms for the eyes or wiggly eyes.
- Wrap the brown pipe cleaner around the curve of the candy cane, and create antlers.
- Place glue on a red or brown pom pom or on the end of the curved part of the candy cane, and place on the end of the curve for the nose.
- Place a line of glue between the antlers and the nose, and put the eyes on.
- Hang the reindeers on the tree, and enjoy.
Christmas Candles and Beads
Decorating with candles is always a favorite during the holiday season. The right smelling candle can create a feeling of Christmas throughout the house all season long. Seasonal candles are super easy to decorate with, and can often be placed in seasonal luminaries or holders.
When decorating with candles, find Christmas scents. Look for candles that are red, green, white, or off white (sugar cookie white), and already in a glass or decorative jar. If buying pillars, votives, three wicks, or tea lights, look for holders that have holiday scenery or that come in holiday colors. Also, remember, icy blues make a good holiday color, and can be used to add a touch of winter in the home all season long.
Once the right candle, and candle holder is found. Place the candles on shelves, in windows, on kitchen counters, and in bathrooms. One way to decorate the dining room table using candles would be:
- Buy a gold, silver, red, blue, or green charger (a decorative plate, either round or square).
- Place a three wick or several different sized pillar candles (usually at least three) on the charger.
- Place a small set of Christmas beads (gold, red, gree, blue) beside the candles or around them, on the charger.
If using votives or tealights, place inside clear or Christmas colored holders on top of charger. Chargers can be found at craft stores and retail stores. They are not very expensive, and have many uses. Always practice fire safety when decorating with candles. Be sure other objects are out of the way, and to extinguish them completely after using them (before going to bed or leaving the house), and always check on them.
As for Christmas balls, they can be placed on wreaths, garlands, and even in glass hurricanes or bowls.
The best type of Christmas ball to place in hurricanes or jars is, shiny and unbreakable. Stores such as, Target, sale plastic unbreakable ball ornaments. Here are a few ideas as to how to decorate with Christmas balls:
- Find a large glass bowl or hurricane jar candle holder, clear or holiday colored.
- Place desired colored balls into the bowl or jar until half full or completely full.
- Place jar on the fireplace mantle, a shelve, in the kitchen or dining room.
- Place a set of holiday beads on the bottom of the bowl or hurricane jar.
- Place colorful balls on top.
- Place more beads on the balls, and arrange them so they drape down in between the balls.
- Place pine cones (or Christmas potpourri) and Christmas balls into the bowl or hurrican jar.
- Mix to blend the two well.
To add an extra touch, place a charger plate (large, medium, or small), on top of the balls. Place a non heavy candle or holiday candy on the plate and enjoy. Just be sure, if using the candle, it does not break the ornaments and do not light the candle on top of the charger, it is only there for decoration and should be taken out of the jar or bowl before being lit.
This idea is extremely versatile. It is also very inexpensive.
Christmas Nativity Decorating
There are numerous nativity scenes to buy during the holidays, and they add a touch of warmth and happiness to the home. Most stores, including major retailer’s such as JCPenny’s, have much to choose from. Decorating with nativity scenes could easily become an annual tradition, and adding other scenes annually could become a tradition as well.
Simply find a spot in the home; bookshelf, piano, fireplace mantle, table, or window, and arrange the nativity scene. Add a votive candle beside the nativity for an extra touch of warmth. Nativity scenes are perfect to decorate with, and reminds many of the hope, peace, and joy of the Christmas season.
Have a very Merry Christmas season and a very Happy New Year, and have fun decorating.