How to Decorate for Christmas on a Budget

My husband was gone leading up to our first married Christmas, so this has been our first year to decorate our little home together.  We were literally starting from scratch in the Christmas decorations department because we both lived in apartments before getting married and just went home for the holidays to all the decor.  The only thing I bought for my apartment that made our military moves with us is a gold sparkly tree…which even I have to admit is a tad girly and not big enough to actually serve as a Christmas tree. hahaha.  Even though it is really fancy looking! 😉

We have gotten our house to a point where it definitely feels like Christmas though, and I wanted to share a few tricks and tips that I feel like helped us …. okay really just me…. be satisfied (without breaking the bank completely) and also feel festive and happy with the way it turned out!

Disclaimer: I decided to do this post semi-last-minute so these photos aren’t the greatest quality in the world, but I did the best I could for y’all! 🙂

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  1. Realize that you can always add to your Christmas decor collection as the years go by:  Okay, so this was what I kept telling myself this year when EVERY cute candle, sparkly tree, pearl strands of garland, and puffy little snowman were just calling out to me in the stores.  haha.  This is only our first year decorating.  Next year, I will already have everything from this year and can add to our collection!  No need to completely break the bank this first year.  Plus, getting everything all at once won’t leave anything to look for down the road which is no fun either, right?!  Patience is a virtue in this case. So whatever your Christmas decor collection looks like right now, there is always next year to pick up new things!  Plus, you might change your mind and decide that you don’t need some of the things you’re craving now or pick something else out instead!
  2. Set a budget:  We set a budget for ourselves that we wanted to stick to as best we could.  This included a tree, home decor, and lights for the outside of our house.  Learning to give and take with each other was key here.  Since we had a budget going into the process, it made that MUCH easier.  For example, I realized before we ever started shopping that if we were going to have lights outside our house (something that my Hubs was really excited about), I was probably going to need to chill on the purchase of 45 Christmas throw pillows and 18 Christmas coffee mugs. haha.
  3. Look for deals: We bought almost 100% of our decorations at Hobby Lobby because their Christmas stuff is already marked down to 50% off.  Doing this gave us WAY more bang for our buck! We also searched for Christmas tree deals.  We looked at real trees, fake trees, pre-lit, not-lit, six-foot, seven-foot, everything you can think of basically.  We found and picked the tree that best suited our needs and fit our budget and went from there since a tree was the most expensive item on our wish list!
  4. Pick the spots you want to decorate before hand:  For us, we both wanted to obviously have a Christmas tree and the lights outside.  But I also wanted a touch of Christmas on our porch and in our entry way, on our table, and on our TV stand. Having a few areas already in mind streamlined my shopping and also made it easier to say no to things when I knew they wouldn’t look right or wouldn’t fit in the spot I was shopping for.
  5. Use ornaments:  Ornaments are SUCH a great decorating tool!!  They take up space, can be tied places, hung places, put into vases, you name it.  We bought one large container of standard ornaments at Hobby Lobby for $10.  We put about half on our tree along with novelty ornaments, and I used the rest of the standard ones on other areas of our house.  Win!
  6. Add small touches:  Small little touches can add to the Christmas mood and be cheap!  For example, we purchased a red candle a little while ago, and I made sure to put it in a very visible spot for a pop of color.  I had a little pack of Christmas coasters that I set out on our coffee table instead of our usual ones.  Buying some fresh red roses also could add to your mood!  The dollar bin at Target or the Dollar Store are GREAT places to find little cheap knick knacks that can Christmas up your place!IMG_7132
  7. Decorate your porch:  I have a post coming on how I made this wreath for ya’ll.  I actually repurposed it, so getting Christmas supplies for it only cost me around $15, and it just makes SUCH a difference to me!! A fun doormat also adds to the Christmas spirit when you’re coming into our home.  To me, the porch is the first impression of your house, so I like to make ours inviting and festive!IMG_7169IMG_7165
  8. Make your tree visible from your door if you can:  I have to give credit to my husband on this one.  The spot where he wanted our tree just seemed random to me at first, but he kept saying he wanted people to see it from our door.  We tried it in the spot where I thought it would look the best, but I didn’t love it there either.  Since I wasn’t in love with where I wanted it originally, we moved it back to where he really liked it.  And now that it has been up a week or so, I really love it there too!! You can see it right when you walk in our house, and it just makes it so cozy and homey and Christmasy when you walk in!IMG_7123

We still have a few things left to do like center our Christmas tree with that mirror and hide our extension cords outside! haha.  I hope that these tips help you to add a little bit of fancy Christmas decor into your home this holiday season!!!

xoxo taylor

If you want something to really get you focused on the true meaning of Christmas, here are Mary’s 5 Actions (that you can take too)!

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