Whether you spend hours each day on Pinterest or you wait until the last minute to plan, the holidays present a fun challenge for those decorating on a budget, especially when it comes to finding kid-friendly creations that your family can make together and enjoy. If you lament the high cost of ornaments, lights and ceramic snowmen, we have some good news. It’s more than possible to decorate for the holidays on a budget, and you may find you really enjoy making things with your family.
Kids can help you create an entire winter wonderland with just a few supplies you may already have around your home. Here are a few great do-it-yourself ideas to get you and your family started.
At some point in your life, you’ve probably made a paper snowflake by folding a piece of paper first lengthwise than again widthwise and cutting away bits and pieces. Paper snowflakes cost next to nothing, and you can easily string them as garland or hang them from the ceiling of your child’s room using string or fishing line.
Create garland using a thick-width, festive-looking ribbon. You can make large bows out of the ribbon or add pine cones or clippings from a pine tree throughout the ribbon to give it a bit more detail.
Create a homemade Advent calendar to count down to December 25. One creative way to make an Advent calendar is to recycle single serving coffee cups. After making your daily cup (or cups) of coffee, clean, rinse, and dry the cups until you have 25. Cut out a Christmas tree shape from cardboard, around three feet high, and use paint, markers, or other craft supplies to make it festive and fun.
Put a small piece of chocolate, a toy, or money in each empty coffee cup. Neatly cover each one with a red, green, or white piece of tissue paper or plastic wrap, and secure it with a rubber band around the cup. Write the numbers 1 through 25 on the tissue paper and glue them onto the cardboard tree. You can add them in order or put them out of order as an extra challenge for children in your household who are learning their numbers.
Wash and dry an empty coffee can or spaghetti sauce jar. Wrap one layer of two-sided tape around it, and put a rubber band around the middle. Insert wrapped candy canes behind the rubber band, with the hooks facing out. Put them right next to each other, so you can’t see the can or jar between them. You can use all red and white or add in some green or blue to vary the look. When all the candy canes are in place, tie a wide red ribbon around them to cover the rubber band.
Put holly or a small bouquet of your favorite holiday flowers in the vase to complete the look. If you’re using real flowers, don’t forget to add water.
You can also make a mini version using an empty baby food jar and mini candy canes.
Buy three varying sizes of foam cones. Glue or pin on cotton balls until all parts of the foam can no longer be seen. You can leave them white for a snowy look, spray paint them green, or wrap thin strands of ribbon around each cone.
As you can see from these examples, creating simple decorations for the holidays doesn’t have to be expensive. And having your kids help can be a lot of fun. With imagination and creativity, things you have sitting in cupboards or waiting to be tossed into the recycling bin can turn into inexpensive and kid-friendly holiday décor. Find more ways to save money on our WalletWorks page.