No other time of year demands decorating out homes like Christmas. From the tree covered in ornaments to lights adorning the front yard, we just want to go all out for Christmas. And it does give the house and yard such a festive feel to have red, gold and evergreen everywhere you look. But, oh, how much it all costs… What is a frugal minded family to do?
Here are some ideas:
- Shop ahead. It is too late for this year, but after Christmas is really the best time to pick up gorgeous decorations for just pennies on the dollar. Store in the barn, garage, attic, under the bed, etc for next year.
- Pick a theme and look for more to accent your collection. Whether you like snowmen, santas, trees, stars, or whatever, stay with your theme. This way the items can be grouped in various ways from year to year and it also makes the hunt for new items more fun.
- Start small. Decide what is important to you and spend your money there. Our first Christmas together ( we had been married about 1 month) we were going to be traveling most of the holidays, so we did not decorate our place much. Instead of a tree, we pinned silver ribbon lace on the wall in a tree shape and hung our decorating on it. It was cute, cheap and easy to clean up.
- Make your own. There are countless books and websites with directions to make all manner of decorations for the tree, house and table. See what you can find and fits your interest and ability level.
- Shop used. My Goodwill store has an entire aisle full of Christmas items all year round. This is a great place to pick up some items to complete your look.
- Skimp on quality. I usually am looking for the best quality item that will last a long time and am willing to pay a bit more for it. This is very important in tools, kitchen appliances and basic clothing items. But probably not necessary for Christmas decorations. Cheap may be just as good. After all, it just needs to sit on the table or shelf for about 4 weeks, then back in to the Rubbermaid tote for 11 months. This is a place that I really shop for the lowest price.
- Make traditions with your decorations and decorating time. We traditionally put up our Christmas tree and decorate the house on Thanksgiving Day. This is the day that we are all home and can get it done. We use an artificial tree due to allergies, so it is safe to leave it up for a month. While the turkey is cooking we are hauling boxes from the barn and putting up lights, decorations and watching football. It is a fun filled day.
What are your favorite Christmas decorations and where did you get them?
Next time: Holiday clothes- what to wear to the party?