• Amber Hill

Christmas spirit on a budget.

It is the most wonderful time of year, right? Of that, there is no denying. Everybody loves a brightly decorated Christmas tree, with presents tucked neatly underneath, and beautiful handcrafted wreaths that brighten any front door. Adults and children alike seem to love ornaments of reindeer and Saint Nick himself; such decorations call many a mantle-piece home.

But all this comes at a cost, a cost which many simply cannot afford. With gifts, food and festive greeting cards to buy, the added price of decorations can give even the most money-savvy a headache. Here are a few tips and tricks to ensure that your house gets the makeover it deserves, without breaking the bank.

D.I.Y decor.

Not only is it a great bonding experience and an activity within itself for all the family, but making your Xmas decorations saves money. Lined candle jars can make a very stylish accessory to any home. All you need to do is line your glass jars with slices of orange, which give a splash of colour and a sweet Christmassy aroma.

Another great feature is a makeshift mini ‘tree’, which acts as the perfect centrepiece for the dinner table. All you have to do is find a good-looking branch, decorate with fake snow, and there you have it!

(More makeshift decorations can be found here).

borrow from family.

People buy new decorations every single year, forgetting that they already have piles of drapes and tinsel in the attic. This is why borrowing from family is a great way to get perfectly useable décor, while also saving a few pennies.

This also keeps sentimental pieces in the family, such as baubles with pictures of the dog on them – décor like that is simply too precious to throw away!

sniff out the deals.

There is no better feeling than buying a shiny new Christmas tree, especially when the old one has been scratched up by the cat year in, year out. When the urge to buy new takes over, it’s always good to keep an eye out for deals. Using coupons or vouchers are a great way to ensure that you don’t have to spend a small fortune, especially when your money is needed elsewhere!

(Look out for Black Friday deals, too – you can never beat a good bargain!)

create a budget.

Creating a budget is easy to do, but it can be difficult to stick to it because, as we all know, splurging is sometimes just too tempting. However, noting down your expenses can help you keep track. When you've seen that you are reaching your limit, you can slow down and instead follow some of the tips and tricks I have already mentioned. This is (unfortunately) part of being an adult!

So, the next time you plan to spend a fine fortune on Xmas knick-knacks, take a second to think – is there a better and cheaper way to do it?

How have you decorated on a budget?

Amber Hill

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