You don't have to go broke for the holidays. You don't have to max out your credit card to buy store items to decorate your home. And, if you're like me, you can just stop spending money on presents altogether.
You can always donate to your favorite charity or volunteer to help feed the poor. That is so much more rewarding than buying presents for the sake of buying.
Decorating for the holidays does not have to mean trips to the store. Once you start doing that, then you'll find something else when you get there. It's easy to go to the store to get tinsel, and end up with a basket full of things that you didn't intend to buy.
If you're on a strict budget, my advice is to stay out of the stores altogether.
Look at what you have and see if you can think of a way to embellish it for a holiday look.
Take the candles in a vintage sewing machine drawer above. You can take scraps of paper and images downloaded off the internet to dress them up for the occasion. I just took clear tape and added the paper and some ribbon.
I have been making ornaments for years. And each year I go about the house and find something else to use that I haven't thought of before. I added some large keys to the tree this year. Gave it a vintage vibe.
Add simple things like ribbon and bows and burlap and anything your heart desires.
If you have a sewing or craft area, I promise you there are ornaments "just waiting to happen" right there in that spot. Ribbons and buttons and felt and fabric make beautiful ornaments and decorations.
Put small candles into tea cups. This happens to be one with a poinsettia on it. But it could be any tea cup. And now you've got something that can be counted as Christmas or holiday decor.
Everything seems to look prettier under glass. See what you might have that you can use under a cloche as a table center piece. It could be most anything. Add a sprig or two of holiday picks to it and it becomes decor.
For this one I added a white pitcher and several little gold trees, because I liked the effect of the gold sparkling against a white backdrop. Then I added the little church under glass. It looks more balanced when used together. It becomes "a vignette."
Add a vintage Santa mug with a small tree inside. It adds just a bit of holiday cheer to ordinary objects on the coffee bar.
I love to decorate with reds and whites at Christmas, so the creamer and little house container for sugar becomes Christmas decor with a small tree behind it.
The vintage suitcase full of various trees. I actually store these trees all year long in this suitcase. So I know right where to look come December!
And the red colander with a candle. Before I had seashells surrounding the candle. But by wrapping strands of gold bead garlands around and around the candle, it becomes a holiday candle.
Add a strand of gold stars to a lampshade, and you've given it a touch of holiday spirit..
Create a little cocoa station on a cake stand. By adding candy canes, it suddenly looks Christmas-y.
Blog Land is absolutely full of very talented ladies who can take something, even what appears to be junk, and turn it into a decorating treasure. So you have lots of creativity to draw from. Pinterest is another gold mine.
It's a mind set. You just have to look at what you have, and think what you could add to it that would turn it temporarily (or permanently) into holiday decor.
By doing this and staying out of the stores where you are tempted to buy, you can have a holiday on budget. And still have a home filled with color and cheer.
Put away the credit cards. Save your cash. And make do. Then pat yourself on the back for not spending too much money at the holidays.