December means the holiday season, gifts, goodies and decorations. It’s the time to bring out the red Santa caps, decorate our homes with much light and unleash our creativity, when it comes to décor. For some of you who are wondering how to bring in the festive season on a budget, don’t worry. Going by the flood of hashtags and videos on social media, you can turn anything in your house into festive décor.
Dubai-based Interior designer Terri Humphrey has some hacks: Thrifting, upcycling and making the best use of textiles. When it comes to upcycling, she says, “We always have decorations left from the year before that are not in the best shape. However, with a little tender loving care, you can give them a new lease on life. You can unleash your inner artist and get creative with eco-friendly paints to fix them up.” You can even get the children involved and make it into a fun family activity. This not only reduces waste, but gives a personal touch to your decor. For instance: You can use an old rod in the house and transform it into a beacon of lights for Christmas, as TikTok will tell you.
Look around in your local shops, she says. You’ll be surprised at what you’ll find.
We always have decorations left from the year before that are not in the best shape. However, with a little tender loving care, you can give them a new lease on life. You can unleash your inner artist and get creative with eco-friendly paints to fix them up...
So still wondering how to bring in the festive cheer? We’ve got you covered.
No Christmas tree? Here are some alternatives
While we would ideally all love a starry pine tree in our living rooms, we can explore some other ideas too. For instance, don’t throw away your egg-holder. It can make for the perfect mini Christmas tree. As TikTok user Dires58 shows in a creative video, you can cut up the egg-holder, into a particular cup-like structure and paint it green. Stick it into a bottle cap, decorate it with little stars, and add one on top.
Humphrey suggests upcycling and using items in your house. How about stacking them into the shape of a Christmas tree? You can try using old cup-holders and arrange them in the triangular shape, with the help of tree stands that you will find in stores like Ikea. Add some lights for the festive feel.
Humphrey has her own ideas too for her own Christmas celebrations. “I’ve decided to use a live Christmas tree table top plant to add freshness. I plan to repurpose a velvet ribbon to form simple bows to add to the branches, and then place in a grand millennial flower pot from a local online market place. So, now you have a Christmas tree that’s not only eco-friendly and low maintenance for the home and the environment, but extremely cost effective,” she says.
Or, you can just arrange some fairy lights in the form of a Christmas tree on a wall. That’s as easy as it gets, as the TikTok user BestOfChristmas shows.
With a little help from a bookshelf…
Remember, Christmas doesn’t only mean that you need an actual tree. Think out of the box. As noted by the décor website MyDomain.com, artist Michael Johansson shared a photo on his Instagram page on how to create a “colour-blocked” Christmas tree, by setting up a shelf of green household items. See how you can place items in a creative way by creating a tall triangle, to create a feeling of a tree. Add some red items that act as ornaments.
You can also use rope and wood to create your own Christmas tree for the wall, according to the site, courtesy the artistic Instagram page, House of Bobbins. Using pieces of wood and rope hanging on the wall from the smallest to biggest pieces, you can make the shape of a Christmas tree. You can add the ornaments too.
Now that’s a fresh twist to tradition.
Most of us want that touch of baubles, snowman, pretty arches and festive chandeliers. Don’t worry if there’s no snow where you live. You just need to use your imagination.
So, here’s how you can turn straw into gold. As Tiktok user LifePrettyHacks shows, turn to the power of origami. Create your own snowflakes from just cutting paper in a rather artistic manner. In fact, as majority of the TikTokers show, you can save a fortune if you just make your own baubles out of paper. It’s cost-effective, and it looks good too. Choose fun and bright colours for the baubles, and suspend them in a row from a ceiling.
For those of you who want some wreaths at home, cut out a cardboard circle, as explained by TikTok artist Yasmin. Crinkle some green paper and cut it up carefully, placing it around the circle. Make a red paper bow, to add to the effect.
Making a snowman out of cups
Christmas doesn’t feel complete without a snowman, does it? So, you can arrange over several plastic cups, depending on how big you want the snowman, and stick them together. According to the TikTok user Metdaan.DIY. You can cut up black sheets of paper and place it on the figure as eyes too. There, you have a Snowman.
Pool noodle on the staircase
Another TikToker shows that you can cut up a pool noodle, which is a cylindrical piece of flexible foam, and place it on the bannisters of your stairwell. “Secure it on the railing,” she explains, as she adds the rest of the ornaments, which include the baubles, ribbons and flowers.
Put those jam jars to good use
Dubai-based interior designer Ambika Malik suggests using old jam jars around the house, and turning them into Christmas décor. Fill them with some sand and glitter, and then add a candle in it. You can decorate the outside with some red ribbons too.
Quirky garlands, with socks or lace
Instead of buying fancy garlands, how about you use what you have at home? You can string anything together, says Malik. You can string up some brightly coloured socks on the wall, or use old bits of lace and turn them into wall décor.
Upcycle those old food tins for decoration
It doesn’t matter if you don’t have actual lanterns. Turn those old food cans into some twinkling light, suggests Malik. First, give them a good wash. Then paint on it, or draw quirky decorations on them like stars. Finally, add a small light in them, and add a handle using an aluminum wire.
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