This post is all about the Christmas bottom line. We’re talking how to save with some dollar store decorations, I’m going to tell you exactly how much we’re spending and I’ve got some creative gift ideas too.
Dollar store Christmas finds
There are great Christmas finds in the Dollar Tree, you just have to be selective. When you walk in, rows of brightly colored plastic and tchotchkes demand attention and the key is to see past them. I tend to stick to white, neutral or glass items.
My Christmas favorites have to be the large glitter stars and ornaments for the tree. Actually you could hang the stars down in front of a window or put in a wreath, possibilities are endless. They have large scale balls too. Most of my tree is Dollar Tree ornaments!
I also love the battery candles to put in lanterns or my little houses with space for votive candles.
One of our dollar stores is in a high-traffic location and doesn’t always have everything, so I end up going to a less populated one a few more miles away. That’s the sign of a serious (or crazy) dollar tree shopper.
You don’t have to look in the Christmas section for gift wrapping supplies. The craft section and party section have some great ideas too, like this packing paper, jute string and plain white tags. There is also burlap and lace ribbon in the craft section.
I should mention the mug, bowl and plate shown here are each sold separately. I’m telling ya, that’s a super cute mug for a dollar! It’s got raised dots around the top and looks way more expensive. I bought 12 for tea and coffee when I host Bible studies and parties.
If you need a dozen of something for group table settings or a party, you can order these things in groups of 12 online at the Dollar Tree.
Last year I shared with you that we were doing Christmas for $325. That included decor, kids’ crafts, presents, cards, wrapping supplies, everything. I figure if I’m going to share with you when we’re doing well cinching in our financial waistline, then I should also share when we are not!
This year our budget is $1,160, not including what we are giving to others. So yeah, more than three times our number last year.
So what’s different? Well I wiped out half of our budget with a new flocked Christmas tree and 10 strands of garland! I don’t buy decorations every year, but our old tree’s top was falling off and I couldn’t turn down 60 percent off garland.
Also, the kids want to buy presents for each other now that they’re a little older. Luca had a shop at school. Adriano was jealous, so I took him to the Dollar Tree (this is not sponsored, haha!) so he could pick one thing for everyone. He did such a good job thoughtfully thinking of each person and choosing what they would like. It was good practice writing names on the tags when we wrapped them too.
Marcello and I are buying each other gifts this year too. I already gave him his! I know, I’m such a little kid. We were having a fun night after the kids went to bed, sitting outside and chatting and he started talking about a watch. It just seemed like the right time so I jumped up to get it. He was so surprised when I pulled it out behind my back! It was better than waiting for Christmas morning if you ask me.
Inexpensive Christmas gift idea
Last year I made an inexpensive gift bag of goodies for both families, if you are looking for ideas:
- CD of Christmas music (try this vintage Christmas playlist)
- Ornament from you know where
- Cross from Bethlehem ($13)
- Mason jar of homemade caramels that didn’t set all the way, haha!
Cheap Christmas cards
One final money-saving idea for today. I get my cards for $15 from Costco. Can’t beat the price. I saw the cheaper ones aren’t popping up on their photo homepage, so here is the link to the 50 for $15 cards. The card stock isn’t as nice as some, but they are going in the trash in a few weeks sooo … They have different designs to choose from. You can also upload your own design, as I’ve done here.