GUEST BLOGGER: TASHA KILLIAN
You’ve already seen them, in some places they’ve been out since August ended. Maybe you avoid them like the plague, or maybe, like me, you are drawn to them, and their pricey tags. That’s right, I’m talking about holiday decorations. I’ll admit it, I LOVE decorating for the holidays. In fact, a tradition I have, is to stay up late on Halloween, and as soon as 12:01 hits, the costume is turned into a Santa hat, and my tree goes up. Since decorating for the holidays is such a big tradition for me, I’ve had to learn to decorate on a budget. Last year, money was especially tight during the holidays, so I learned a few holiday decorating hacks I’ll pass on to all of you.
Hack number one – craft your own. I’ll be the first to admit it, crafting is not my forte. I don’t enjoy spending more than 10 minutes on a craft, and I don’t have the gift to make simple things look cute. That being said, one thing I am good at is following directions. Thanks to modern-day technology, I’ve been able to overcome some of those issues by watching YouTube tutorials. I’ve made some decorations for $15 when buying something similar at the store would have cost me $35. Crafting is a great way to keep your decoration collection growing without killing your budget.
Hack number two – buy secondhand. Did you know that most thrift stores won’t take large Christmas decorations? In fact, if you go to drop off an artificial Christmas tree, they may just trash it right in front of you (true story, I’ve had it happen to me). Because Christmas trees are hard to pawn off onto thrift store, you can usually find them fairly cheap on Facebook marketplace. I’ve gotten a 7 foot, in almost new shape, tree for $15. Although you may not find large decorations at thrift stores, on thing they do have is small wooden crafts – some already painted and some not, ornaments, plates, etc. These items secondhand are going to be cheaper than the items you’ll buy at a store, and sometimes in better shape!
Hack number three – use items you already have in unique ways. This is probably my favorite hack. A lot of decorations I have are things that I use year round, and turn into holiday décor during the season. One example of these is snowy jar scenes. I take regular jars, put some fake snow and tiny figures (usually fairly inexpensive at craft/ dollar stores) and create a magical scene in an everyday item! Another easy way to cheer up your regular household items for the season is with ribbon. I usually buy a spool of ribbon for $4 or $5 and cut it into cute bows to wrap around anything I can find, like candles, etc.
As you can see, there are many ways to cut prices when it comes to decorating for the holidays. One lesson I’ve learned, is you don’t have to sacrifice your love of decorating just because money is tight. You can be smarter about how you decorate and still create a holiday wonderland in your home.
Blog editor and Accredited Financial Counselor sharing real-life money smarts that can help you stay on track with financial goals while still enjoying life!
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