Friday, December 18, 2009

Deck the Halls, Err.. Great Room..

I finally finished decorating for Christmas! (Cue lots of happy dances and fist pumping.) I gave you all a little taste of what was to come here and now I'm ready to show all! As I said before, money was a little tighter this month then usual, so I needed to get creative and use things I already had laying around the house. So I present to you, my Natural/Recycled/Ruby and Gold Christmas!

To begin with I added a small basket to the front porch. Since we are on the first floor, we don't have a banister for the balcony/patio area to wrap lights around, so I needed something add a little pizazz!

Wait a second... are those... gold.. pumpkins??

Yes, they are. I had a bunch of gourds leftover from Halloween that I used in my Thanksgiving decor too. While doing a historic house tour with my mom a few weeks back we saw an arrangement of white and gold spray painted pumpkins in a backyard. My mother and I looked at each other and said "Oh, we can do that!" and thus my inspiration was born. I already had the spray paint from years ago, and the basket was sitting in the bedroom holding electrical cords. The greens were clipped from the back of our Christmas tree, and my awesome sister-in-law Bryn let me snip some holly from the bush in her front yard.

Total cost of this project: $0.

Momma G was kind enough to give us a wreath for our door. Originally it had a big red bow and four silk poinsettias- two red and two white. I pulled off the bow and red poinsettias (they are in the basket above), added some pine cones from the Thanksgiving centerpieces that I hit with a little gold spray paint, a new bow, and some smaller red ornaments
Total cost= $0

As we head inside and out of the cold, we see the table set for a small holiday dinner

I picked up this red table cloth at Family Dollar. I really like it because it has a subtle houndstooth pattern that adds a little extra texture. I played around with a lot of different centerpieces, but this is the winning look

Years ago when my mother and I were on that same historic house tour we saw candles in mason jars used to light a walkway outside of someones home. Ever since then we started collecting mason jars, mayo jars, jelly jars, anything like that with the idea of doing at my parents house. Well, we never did. This year I was DETERMINED to do it. So I collected all the jars we had, added a little sand at the bottom to add to the 'natural' theme and place in a votive candle I had laying around. I snagged this pretty ribbon on sale at Michael's and wrapped the tops of each jar. I popped in a few leftover ornaments and was quite please with the outcome.

Ribbon= $1.99
Sand= $3.00
Total= $5.00

We don't have a fireplace to hang our stockings with care, so I decided to use the shelves above our buffet as a make-shift mantle.
I added a few more of my gold-painted pumpkins
as well as more clippings from the tree, pine cones, and some spray painted acorns that were also leftover from the Thanksgiving decor. I also transplanted the dishtowel from the former centerpiece to the mantel for added color and texture

I took some extra wine glasses and vases and used them in the arrangement. The center vase is stacked with gold-coated acorns and each wine glass has a leftover ornament

I picked up these stocking holders through Freecycle

...and yes, I mix my metallics. Because I'm a rebel like that. What now?

Just below the shelf, on the buffet is the runner that usually goes on the table. I added two more of my mason jar candles and this adorable nativity set that my mom gave me as a gift

On our bookshelf I decided to go a bit more modern

I took all the leftover small ornaments and filled the bottom of the vase. I added any larger ornaments on the top. Around the base of the vase I had golden vine-tinsel that was still wound up from being in storage. I looped it around the vase, tousled it a little, added a couple more spray painted gourds and pine cones and took any gold ornaments left and scattered them around. Throw in a couple tea lights and boom, I was done.
Total= $0.

Back around Halloween, Michael's had their Christmas decor on sale for 70% off. I snagged two small wreaths for $1.50 each and used them on the end tables to jazz up two more of my mason jars

Wreaths= $3.00 (2 @ $1.50 each)
Total= $3.00

I think my favorite piece is the arrangement I placed on the coffee table

Originally this was to go on the dining room table, but I loved it so much I wanted it to be front and center.

I used the tray I had previously owned. I dried the holly Bryn allowed me to cut, and arranged it around 3 pillar candles I've had sitting around. I added in a couple more smaller ornaments and more gilded pine cones

I continued the acorn theme into this as well. I just love the natural textures with the gold accents

Total= $0

Finally, we have the tree! Flash off:

and flash on:

Instead of tinsel or beads this year, JEGs and I added strands of popcorn around the tree

We used mostly red and gold ornaments that I had purchased from Walmart years ago along with our own special touches

The star is my absolute favorite. I got this from Target a few years ago- I'm almost positive they still sell it though. It doesn't light up on it's own, JEGs took a few of the lights from the strand and popped them through the filigree in the back.

Tree= $40 (we shelled out for a real one this year)
Popcorn= $.99 for a box that held 5 packets. We used about 2, so about $.40 used.
Total= $40.40
Last but not least I added some lighted garland that I've had for a couple years. I rounded out the natural look with a couple more pine cones, and I also added a few red bows for fun

Total= $0
Total cost for all decorating= $48.40
So for just under $50 (keeping in mind that the tree was forty of that) I was able to decorate my apartment and stay on a pretty tight budget.
Now, I just need to have people over so I can show it off! Who wants to come over tomorrow night? ;)
Always & Forever,


Kasey at Thrifty Little Blog said...

Wow, what a thrifty (and beautiful) Christmas! I'm so impressed!!

Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker said...

So festive! I love it -- especially your centerpiece :)

Danielle and Clint said...

Awww...your popcorn strands look so cute!! What a cute vintage touch to add to your tree.

Love the jars as a centerpiece. Candles always set the mood.

Great job!

Jodie said...

How creative!!! Very impressive! Nice work, Lizzie!

Amanda said...

Great idea with using the ornaments in your decorations!

I have so many cheap-o ornaments that I got from my future mother in law that I know they'd make a great table centerpiece for next Christmas. Thanks for the idea!

Oh and the boyfriend blazer is on my fashion wishlist! Glad to see you found one so sassy:)