Christmas Decor on a Dime

I’ll never forget my first Christmas, married and living on my own. I was SO excited to decorate our tiny 750 sq. ft. apartment. I had dreams of a real tree, decked to the hilt and twinkle lights and garland dripping from every surface.

One conversation with my ever finances-consious husband curtailed those dreams rather quickly. It was one of those ‘first year of marriage’ scuffles.

I ended up getting a 3 ft. fake tree from Michael’s with my 40% off coupon and hanging our 3 ‘our first Christmas’ ornaments on it. A strand or two of christmas lights to go around our one window and that was the extent of my Christmas decor that first year.

In the seven years that have passed (has it really been that long!?) I have accumulated, little by little, a few more decorations, but when Christmas gifts take up all of your extra cash, it’s hard to justify spending a ton on decorations.

If you find yourself wanting a little more to deck the halls with, but not a huge budget to do it – here are my favorite inexpensive, but still fabulous, Christmas decorations.

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1) Winter Wonderland and Chalk Printables

I already had the glass apothecary jar, and to be honest, it is one of the best investments I’ve made. I have used it for countless events, and it can be adapted to any season, and any decor. You can do this with Mason jars, but I love the extra room and size of the apothecary jar. The trees and snow are from the Dollar Store and to make this vignette work, you have to keep it simple. My goal with ALL of my Christmas decor is peaceful and magical.

The chalk printable is free and the frame is $0.99 from Ikea. This is probably my favorite decor in the house, and it literally cost me $3.

2) Felt Stockings  

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I was not cool with all of the crazy colored, character stockings for my kids. It HAD to match, but back when I only had one, I didn’t want to spend a fortune on stockings that I may or may not use. So, I bought the cheapest felt stockings I could find (I got 5…just in case) and monogramed them with some simple two tone felt letters. My weapon of choice for sticking these letters on is a glue gun.

It may be simple, but it matches and stays WAY under budget.

3) Cinnamon Ornaments

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We made these last year, and I was so surprised to find that when I took them out this year, the cinnamon smell was still so strong! Mixed with the Christmas Tree smell, it is pure heaven. I love the ornaments because they cost virtually nothing to make, but really add a rustic charm to the tree, and the kids can put them on without me worrying about breakage!

To make these work, you really need to get the red and white bakers twine – or some other simple and stylish string/ribbon.

4) Glittered Vases

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I made these a few years ago, and love them SO MUCH they are actually apart of my year round decor. Adding some fake berries I pulled off a $0.50 garage sale wreath really gives them a holiday touch.

To make these work you HAVE to get the Martha Stewart glitter from Michael’s. I just haven’t found any that compares! Make sure the Modge Podge (or whatever adhesive you use) is painted on evenly and lightly. Too heavy on the glue and it will start to drip and look uneven.

One more tip – HAIR SPRAY. Spray a liberal amount of hair spray on the glitter after it has dried so that the glitter doesn’t come off.

5) Simple Tree SkirtIMG_3297

I have this thing where I wrap all my Christmas gifts in the same theme of wrapping and it’s different each year. I don’t want my tree skirt clashing with my wrapping! (I know, I know) I also wasn’t ready to spend $50 on a tree skirt, so I got some cheap white fabric and I just drape it around the bottom of the tree. It kind of looks like snow and I can put any theme of wrapping on it and it still looks awesome!

6) Stovetop Fragrance

This isn’t really a decoration, but it adds SO much to the holiday feel when your house smells amazing. Burning through Christmas candles at the rate I do can get pricy! This simple stovetop fragrance recipe costs pennies and really fills the house.

– 1 stick of cinnamon
– Whole cloves
– Vanilla extract
– Orange peel

Put these ingredients into a small pot with water and put on the stovetop on low. Keep an eye on it, so the water doesn’t completely evaporate. You can keep adding water and enjoy this potpori for a week or more. IMG_3311

I hope this gives you some ideas on how to add holiday cheer without breaking the bank. May your days be merry and BRIGHT!

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