Tough economic times may mean your holiday budget is tight this year. But trimming your holiday spending doesn't mean you have to sacrifice style. By using existing items in your home and purchasing just a few "key," but inexpensive elements, you can create a show-stopping holiday display within your budget.
Here are some festive and fresh ways to deck the halls:
The Green Scene:
Bring a taste of the outdoors in with a "green" theme — straight from your back yard. Use foliage, like pine cones and holly, to create a lush centerpiece or dress up a mantel. Intertwine the natural flora with ribbons, ornaments or the hottest earthy trend of the season — woodsy mushrooms. Look for hand carved wooden or recycled glass mushrooms in various sizes.
Birds of a Feather:
Also nature-inspired, birds (small, feature covered birds can often be found in craft and discount stores) evoke the songs of the season. These cheerful feathered friends can make a special appearance or set the entire theme and are adorable additions to any holiday decor. Or consider hanging birdhouses (decorated by you) with holiday-colored ribbons. Three to five birdhouses hung from the ceiling above a dining table or in front of a large picture window can create a lovely holiday scene.
Bulbs and Baubles:
Group ornaments in similar colors or themes and either hang them throughout your home or place them in bowls or vases. For instance, the latest twist on traditional colors is updated with a palette of winter white, raspberry and mossy green. Look for bulbs in these colors or create your own holiday color scheme.
Flowers are not only beautiful and fragrant, but they also add natural color to any holiday decor. Flowers like amaryllis or the bright red poinsettia can bring a lot of holiday cheer for not too much money. Not so much into the live stuff? Craft and discount stores often have low-cost silk holiday flowers that look surprisingly real. And those you can use year after year.
Go vintage with your holiday tree this year. Hang old cookie cutters, vintage kitchen wear, or old cowboy stuff. The rustier the better! Get creative! Have a fisherman in the family? Decorate with everything in his or hers tackle box. Flies, lures, and some vintage fishing items can make a delightful — and one-of-a-kind — tree all at a budget-friendly price.
Head to the supermarket:
Another inexpensive burst of holiday hue comes straight from the grocery store with fruits, spices, seeds and berries. For example, gather bushels of apples or cranberries and place them in bowls and vases throughout the house. Coordinated with holiday-patterned linens, this makes a stunning display. Real fruit in table arrangements and wreaths is also a beautiful, fragrant addition without spending a lot of money.
Light the Way:
Nothing creates a warm, cozy holiday environment like candlelight. Group candles in holiday colors or simply white throughout your home to create a natural glow. Candleholders can be made from many things you already have on hand: wine glasses, teacups, or vases. Look around the house before you buy new ones. Just make sure they're safe to use.
Toys on Parade:
The holidays bring out the child in all of us, so why not decorate with toys? Stick to a "toy theme," like wooden toys, to make an impact. Search flea markets or even grandma's attic to find old wooden trains, nutcrackers and blocks. Even using past family members' toys will evoke special memories and make a charming, affordable tree.
Courtesy of ARA Content