Thursday, December 22, 2011

Decorating with Pinecones

If you are looking for inexpensive holiday decorations, pine cones can provide lots of fun, festive looks for free (assuming you collect them yourself).  Their association with evergreens - one of the classic symbols of Christmas - make them especially appropriate.
  • Fill baskets of pine cones in various sizes
  • Make them into tree ornaments by gluing on ribbon
  • Use them to surround candles in hurricane lamps or on plates or mirrors
  • For extra pizazz, spray paint them gold or silver, and/or add a dusting of glitter
  • Add them to floral arrangements
  • Sprinkle tiny ones across the dinner table
For more ideas, see How to Decorate with Pine Cones.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Pretty, But Penny-Pinching Christmas Decorating

Using what you already have on hand is one of the best ways to save money.  So instead of heading to the mall to pick up some new holiday decorations, take a look at what you already have.  A bowl of colorful (but burnt out) Christmas tree bulbs is pretty, as is a table featuring greens and fruit (citrus, apples, almost anything will do).  Spell out "Merry Christmas" with your Scrabble set.  Place paper snowflakes in a fancy frame.  Click over to the Better Homes & Garden web site for photos that will inspire you. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Glitter-y Christmas

Glitter - widely available with stationary and craft supplies -- is a festive yet frugal way to add sparkle to your holiday decorations.  Here are a few ideas:
  • Dress up plain tree ornaments with a dusting of glitter.
  • Stencil a design onto taper or votive candles and outline it with glitter.
  • Cut seasonal shapes (e.g. trees, stars, doves) out of felt and decorate with glitter.
  • Make home-made cards and gift-tags out of construction paper festooned with glitter.
While there are now many ways to apply glitter -- glitter pens, etc. -- the easiest way is to use the little tubes.  Simply apply glue (white, Elmer's type) to the area you want to sparkle and sprinkle on the magic.  Once the glue has dried, shake the item to release the excess -- it can be recycled for your next project.  Be sure to cover your work area with newspaper before you get started.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Festive Meets Frugal

The BH&G article Pennywise Projects for Christmas has lots of good ideas for holiday decorating that use objects you may already have on head.  From recycling old colored Christmas tree lightbulbs, to making a tree out of tinkertoys, there is something here for everyone.