10 Christmas Decorating Ideas on a Budget

You don't need to have a lot of extra cash to decorate your home with warmth and personality for the holidays. You can do it on even the tightest budget and save your cash for the things that really count. All you need is a little bit of creativity and a few of these great hints to create a festive feel. Here's where to start:

Simple holiday themes
First things first. Set a plan or a theme for your Christmas decorating. It doesn't cost a thing to have a good plan. When you are working on a tight budget, choosing a theme is what will help pull your ideas together, as well as make your decorations look personal. Some theme ideas for Christmas are:

• The rustic lodge Christmas
• A toy-land Christmas
• Christmas from countries around the world
• Victorian Christmas
• Country Christmas
• Santa Christmas
• Snowman Christmas
• Old-fashioned Christmas.

Quick tricks
Place a few inexpensive glass balls in a bowl and embellish with a few sprigs of greenery or some leftover ribbon. If you don't have an extra bowl (it is the holidays, after all!), try decoupaging a box with leftover Christmas wrap, or cover with a little fabric and glue.

Gift-wrap frames
Take down your pictures and wrap them like a gift, then hang them back on the wall for great holiday cheer! You don't have to do this all around the house, how about just in the entry, or maybe the dining room?

Decorating the chandelier
Tie greens or ornaments to the chandelier with a little Christmas ribbon, just make sure they don't hang low enough for any candles on the table to catch them on fire.

Easy gift tags
Make your own gift tags out of leftover paper. Okay, this is not a new idea, but here's how you can punch it up:
• Add details by layering shapes over the base paper.
• Use paper punches and scalloped scrapbooking scissors to add style.
• Use a gold calligraphy pen to add names.
• Make old holiday cards into tags by decorating the edges with scalloped scissors.

Festive window decoration
Sponge stars or other seasonal shapes on your window with paint! Just add a teaspoon or so of liquid dish soap to acrylic craft paint, (I like white or gold metallic) and after the holidays you can wash it off with window cleaner. Use a non-scratching dish scrubber if you come across a stubborn spot.

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