As we enter the Holiday season our wallets, purses or pocketbooks start to “tremble” just thinking about the excesses of the festivities. While not wanting to sound like Scrooges, we do encourage you to reflect on the over commercialization and waste. In this post I’ll share a few thrifty ideas so that you don’t overspend, and still look great with your friends and families.
Decorating the table
For me decorating the table is crucial. We will spend long hours around it talking, reflecting and laughing with our loved ones. So it’s worth making a special effort. Wait… that doesn’t mean that we have to spend a fortune to make it pretty though. Some ideas that come to mind: take an A4-size card that you have at home or can easily buy and one of those pens that write in gold or silver you can prepare some great looking name cards with the name of each guest. I made them a long time ago and in fact I reuse them every year 😉
Gather pine cones from the countryside, twigs or leaves and use them to decorate your table or make simple Holiday adornments for the centre. You can easily paint them gold or silver to give a more festive touch.
Use natural fibre cloth napkins as they are more sustainable than paper. If you have plain white napkins (which go with everything) they are a great choice. Guys, what can I say? Using cloth napkins is just sooo much more pleasant than paper. Use your card and cut out some original festive shapes such as trees, baubles or snowflakes and tie one around each napkin with a jute cord. It will look so amazing.
Charming corners without spending a penny
Use candles that you have around the home to make decorative corners. They will give a really hygge touch without spending a penny. Plants are really charming too and if you have a poinsettia you can easily make a really festive corner. Just add a few decorative touches, perhaps using some spare decorations you have that you don’t know where to put.
Good value hearty meals
To prepare a hearty meal you don’t need to use expensive or sophisticated ingredients. Try to avoid overpriced and unhealthy ready-cooked meals by preparing your festive dishes yourself. Meals you prepare will be healthier and much tastier when cooked with love and a little attention. As well as saving money you will eat better quality too.
Don’t fall for typical commercial messaging. With the idea we’re fed that no expense should be spared over the Holiday season we often end up paying way over the odds (in some cases prices are hiked by up to 300%) for certain fruit, fish or seafood.
Minimalist and ecological gifts
How much wrapping paper do we use to wrap gifts that will be opened in a few seconds? How about using beeswax wraps or using recycled paper? You can even use cloths you no longer use. How about placing gifts in a jute cloth bag instead? That will make a really original wrapping that can be reused over and over to do your sustainable bulk shopping!
Something I really recommend is gifting something you know how to craft. For example a painting if you’re an artist, a scarf if you knit or some sweets if you know how to cook…
Another great idea is to gift an experience instead of something physical. Tickets for a show, a night away in a hotel, a dinner in a restaurant you wouldn’t normally go to.
Well I hope these ideas help you or give you a bit of inspiration for having a more sustainable and less expensive Holiday celebration. If so, I’d love it if you let me know your thoughts or shared ideas of your own in the comments below.