Last week I got to share our Christmas house tour along with a bunch of other super talented bloggers. I got several emailed questions about how I decide what to bring in when decorating for the holidays, and if I had any tips for low-budget decor, so I thought it’d be fun to share my top 10 budget-friendly Christmas decorating tips!
1) Front door. A wreath and a doormat can go a long way, and can be reusable. We don’t actually get a ton of foot traffic at our front door since we come in through the garage normally, so if it’s not gross by the end of the Christmas season, I’ll store our doormat away for next year. Previously we had a faux wreath that we had used for several years, but this year we went with a real one—so I’ll have to throw it away this time.
2) Light strands. Light strands are about as festive as they come, and placed properly I actually think you could get away with having them out all year round. Now hear me out, I’m not saying to be the person who has red and green flashing Christmas lights in their yard all year round. But I think a few tastefully placed white light strands can add a bit of whimsy and romance as well as some Christmas cheer for less than $10.
3) Garland & banners. Garland and banners are another one of my favorite accessories to use when decorating for the holidays. You can make your own, but if you’re like me and run out of time, Target or any craft store has plenty of options. This year I hung several with a white mitten banner for the fireplace and another banner over our built-in bar. I also had some pom pom garland that I made last year displayed in a pretty metal bucket by the fireplace.
4) Chandelier decor. Something new that I saw this year that I hadn’t really noticed before was all the creative ways people are decorating the chandeliers for the holidays. I kept ours fairly simple and used a red beaded strand to make our chandelier just a little bit more festive. Be careful—I will say I did give myself a pretty nasty burn from a lightbulb doing this. I think it’s worth it though! Also, another word of caution, some material can be flammable and not appropriate to be anywhere near a light source! Be careful!
5) Fireplace mantle. The fireplace mantle is my favorite place to decorate, probably because our last house didn’t have a mantle so I’m really loving playing with this one. I change it up seasonally but this holiday I decided to go with something fairly simple—a pretty lit garland adds just the right amount of twinkle with greenery. Don’t have a mantle? You can still have all the fun! Instead pick a shelf to decorate or hang a floating shelf in the middle of your living room and make it a mantle. Why not??
6) Books. I know I’ve said it before but books are one of my all-time favorite decorating tools. First of all I have a reading problem so I always have like 100 books around. Secondly, even if you’re not a big reader like me you can always find older books for fairly cheap at used book stores or thrift stores. This season I took two Christmas books I had and displayed them both on the coffee table.
7) Ornaments. Ornaments are another super affordable, fun way to decorate your home for the holidays. You can find them in almost any color and sheen. This year we used a gold and silver ornament palate on our tree, but I have plenty of colorful ornaments left over from years before and I used those on our dresser by putting them in some glass canisters that usually hold make up and hair accessories. Voila.
8) Trays. Trays are another one of my favorite ways to decorate for any occasion. There’s something so fun about corralling a group of items together on the counter. We got really lucky this year since we happened to be in London a few weeks ago and got some Christmas tea that clearly was very festive (and tasty!). You don’t need fancy tea for your tray though—even packets of swiss miss, a jar of marshmallows and a few cute mugs are super festive! Who doesn’t love a good hot chocolate station?
9) Dining table. I love creating tablescapes on our dining table. Some years I go fancy and other years I prefer to keep things more simple. This year I did a gold shimmery tablecloth (that I probably will use all year around, just because I love it!) contrasted with simple white plates and fresh branches cut from our Christmas tree for a simple yet festive holiday table. This is a place you can really let your personality shine. You can see some of my other favorite tablescape’s here.
10) Chalkboards/art. Pretty self explanatory, but if you have a chalkboard in your home it’s easy to deck it out for Christmas. Likewise, if you have some favorite pieces of Christmas art, or photos from previous Christmases, a quick change out of photos in frames can make your home feel even more joyful. 🙂
So those are my ten favorite ways to add Christmas cheer to a home on a budget! Okay, okay, let’s make it 11 ways…I can’t resist.
Hehe, smiling is my favorite. What about you guys? I’d love to hear your favorite Christmas decorating items!