GIVEAWAY: fill your house from top to bottom with Christmas decorations…

Miss Thrifty49 December 4, 2012

usborne christmas decorations

See this? It’s a book published by Usborne, called Christmas Decorations to Cut, Fold & Stick. It’s absolutely brilliant – and if you’d like to win a copy, scroll to the bottom of this post. In the meantime, let me tell you that this book makes me feel like this:

I love christmas decorations

I was so happy to be sent a review copy, because I wasn’t looking forward to hauling our tired box of tired decorations down from the attic. Some of our decorations were made to last, but if truth be told the bits of tinsel and the tree decorations are looking a bit shabby.

Christmas Decorations to Cut, Fold & Stick works like this. The tear-out pages are filled with dotted lines and pretty Christmas prints, and the book comes with instructions on how to turn the pages into stylish Christmas decorations, from paper chains to angels for the tree. All you need is a pair of scissors and some sellotape.

how to make christmas decorations

There are sufficient decorations here to adorn your house from top to bottom – for less than the cost of a decent bauble! Right now this book is just £3.49 from Amazon, with free delivery. Here are some we made earlier:

handmade christmas decorations

I say “we” because these paper decorations are addictive. My husband, after some initial grumbling and groaning, suddenly transformed into a festive Edward Scissorhands. The big star on the stairs (bottom right) is his handiwork, as are these woven hearts:

christmas heart decorations

Don’t tell him I told you about the woven hearts though – he has a macho reputation to uphold.

My mother-in-law made these angels:

christmas angel decorations

My house is already looking festive and we have only just started…


Usborne has kindly provided three copies of Christmas Decorations to Cut, Fold & Stick, to give away to Miss Thrifty readers.

To enter: just leave a comment below, with your top Christmas decoration tip. It could be anything from how to keep the tree needles from falling, to your best bargain buy.

The giveaway is open to all UK  residents. The closing date is 12 noon GMT on Friday 7 December, when the winners will be picked at random from all the entries. This is a short, sweet giveaway, so that if you win, you have enough time to get all these lovely decorations up!

BONUS ENTRY: add your Christmas decoration tip to the Miss Thrifty Facebook page – anywhere on the page will do.

Good luck – and if you win, happy snipping and taping. 🙂


UPDATE: This competition is now closed, and the winners have been drawn. They are (drumroll): Sheila and Sue (Miss Thrifty Blog commenters) and Dakiara Constantine (Miss Thrifty Facebook follower). Well done ladies!


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49 Responses to “GIVEAWAY: fill your house from top to bottom with Christmas decorations…

Andrea Nicholds says:

Looks like a fabulous book – great to have the templates printed on patterned paper so it’s a one stop project book!

December 4, 2012 at 11:49 pm

Sarah Atkinson says:

My kids would love this book! My best tip is I save all year + get high street vouchers. I always try to keep some back so I can get some super cheap pressies for next year in the Jan sales + keep them in a box in the attic so I dont forget where iv hidden them! x

December 5, 2012 at 1:00 am

Mel Ryan says:

Put freshly cut holly and fir tree twigs into bargain pewter tankards from you local charity shop. Simple, but effective, and wonderful smelling, mantle/windowsill decorations.

December 5, 2012 at 1:10 am

Irene says:

Love the book – great to have the projects and (almost) everything you need for the decorations in one book. My decorating tip: Fill a glass fruit bowl, hurricane lamp or goldfish bowl with coloured baubles and/or battery-operated lights.

December 5, 2012 at 1:29 am

Pen says:

Lovely book, would love to be an owner! My Christmas make/tip is to paint old jamjars with old nail varnish, patterns/ designs / squiggles ( easily done by any age ) Use them for pen holders, or tea light holders, a great home made pressie!

December 5, 2012 at 2:39 am

liveseygirl says:

My top Christmas tip is get some church in ya life. I’m a big Jesus fan and we go as a family to church most Sundays. Even if you are a full on Aethist I would say that there is something special about church at Christmas. No need to attend a service or get all religious; just take 15 minutes out of the frantic Christmas build up to light a candle in memory of someone you miss or to represent someone you hope to meet in 2013. I promise you wont be disapointed that you took some time out 🙂 Merry Christmas xx

December 5, 2012 at 6:45 am

Jo Little says:

My Christmas tip is to go for a walk and raid nature! Pine cones, conkers, holly, ivy and interesting seedheads can be collected for decorations. Make garlands or just display in a pretty bowl. They can be sprayed with metallic paint or snow spray if you like to jazz it up. Jo

December 5, 2012 at 8:11 am

Johnny Debt says:

Orange & Cloves – The are so easy to make, just get an orange and put whole cloves into it, then wrap with a ribbon.

Not only do they look good, but the smell is incredible!

Just do a web search for some great ideas.

Miss Thrifty great post, I pinned it on Pinterest.

December 5, 2012 at 8:45 am

I love Christmas and the smell of christmas my top tip is top up on all those christmas scented candles in the sales and during Decemember you can have several lit up giving that really welcome scent and warmth of christmas, your guests will love it.

December 5, 2012 at 8:47 am

Hannah Bartram says:

My decoration tip is to buy new decorations in the sales after Christmas and save them for the next year. It makes buying decorations a lot cheaper. This book looks lovely 🙂

December 5, 2012 at 8:49 am

Caroline says:

This year I have been drying hydrangea heads and spraying them gold, they manage to look expensive despite being practically free. Another garden raid is a lost tree branch sprayed silver and hanging with gold sprayed pinecones and jewel coloured baubles. Since I got the baubles yonks ago in a post Christmas sale it’s a cheap year!

December 5, 2012 at 8:55 am

Jan says:

When putting your christmas lights back in their boxes at the end of Christmas write on the box lid where the lights were from e.g. front room mirror etc. That way you wont be messing around at Christmas time wondering which set fits where!

December 5, 2012 at 9:35 am

Naiomi says:

Sorry dont think my comment posted before ? Any was saying every year i save my christmas cards and me and my son cutt them in to new christmas gift tags they are completly free not even 0.01p and a little green to! xxx

December 5, 2012 at 10:10 am

Louise says:

This book looks great fun to do with my niece! My christmas tip is… make decorations and gift tags from salt dough. I use cookie cutters to make the shapes then stamp the dough using craft stamps with christmas patterns or images and make a hole in the top using a straw which ribbon can be threaded through. You can paint them when they have dried 🙂

December 5, 2012 at 10:23 am

Nessie says:

What a sweet book! My top tip is to dress the windows with star ornaments, etc. to get already a festive feeling when you or your visitors come close to your house. As soon as I hang up my forst window ornament, I am in a festive mood.
Love, Nessie

December 5, 2012 at 11:05 am

Jean Martin says:

Looks a great book but what about using the templates for material cut outs, them they really would last year on year

December 5, 2012 at 11:18 am

maureen says:

I love to leave cinnamon, cloves, orange and lemon peel in a low setting oven giving a wonderful Christmas perfume through the house.

December 5, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Gina says:

If you get a real tree, this year consider getting a small one instead of the largest you can manage. It will make your room look bigger, allow the kids to decorate it without dangling them above it and any spare tree decorations can be hung off tinsel woven around things in the house.

December 5, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Sheila says:

My top thrifty tip for a really great Christmas decoration idea is . . .

If you’d like to decorate the front of your home (outside) and have the outdoor Christmas lights but are bored with simply draping them around the front of the house … then why don’t you go for a stroll into your local wooded area (go with a friend or spouse/partner) and find a large a branch which has fallen from a tree (and with the bad weather we’ve just experienced here in Britain there will be a selection). Choose the best branch which suits your needs (you’ll see why in a minute). But don’t cut branches from trees … I think I’m right in saying that it’s illegal to take branches from trees.

Bring home the broken branch which you’ll find on the floor in the woods or where-ever there are trees, and either:

Make ‘legs’ for it by hammering two pieces wood to the bottom of it in an X shape – adding two small chunks of the same wood to the ‘legs’ which don’t touch the floor – so that they’re level with the the other part of the X shape so it will stand level and won’t wobble.


You could … ‘plant’ it in a deep outdoor pot (push it far down, and for stability push in two garden canes and wrap the branch to the garden canes with string) …

OR .. if you have an open porch with a wooden or brick column to which you can ‘tie’ the branch to – then tie it to the column with good string and angle it in the way you’d like it to ‘fall’ … and then use your outdoor lights to dress it, and hang a few plastic baubles from the side branches of it and…

VOILA! A great ‘tree’ to dress the front of your home. ….

To add …
if you have some white paint available … you could dabble some of the white paint in various places to make it look like snow – and while the paint is wet, sprinkle a little glitter on the paint and allow to dry. Or .. if money allows, you could buy some of that fake snow in a can.

If you have a hammer drill with a drill bit which will drill into the walls outside – you could screw some hooks (like cup hooks) into the wall in appropriate places) and string your branch against the wall and decorate it there.

IF … you don’t have an indoor tree and can’t afford a new one – you could use this idea for indoors too. Use your indoor lights, baubles, trimmings … even make your own decorations for it (the dough idea posted above would be wonderful too!)

Make paper chains from newspapers or magazines. (this would give your tree that wonderful ‘vintage’ feel)

Make ‘bells’ from egg boxes (cut out the little beds which the eggs sit in) – and if you wish .. paint them, then simply poke a hole into the bottom and thread some string/cotton through the hole, tie a knot so that the ‘bell’ doesn’t fall off the string, and tie a loop on the other end so that you can hang that loop on the branch.

Use your imagination and allow yourself to ‘go’ with this idea and dress it up so it suits you and your home.

Wishing you all a very happy, peace filled Christmas, and may the New Year bring you contentment. ~ Sheila xxx

December 5, 2012 at 12:30 pm

Caroline says:

Collect pine cones – a fun activity with kids – and spray them silver. You can arrange them in bowls or hang them from the tree for some cheap but chic Christmas decorations!

December 5, 2012 at 12:33 pm

Polly says:

Stop Christmas lights getting in a tangle. Cut a rectangle out of an old cardboard box (one of the flaps or an end will do), cut notches in both short sides & wind the lights round the cardboard. Fix the plug into one of the notches when you get to the end of the winding. Much better than shoving lights in a plastic bag to deal with next Christmas!

December 5, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Gemma says:

Battery operated lights in a vase are a simple and festive way of christmasing up a room.

December 5, 2012 at 2:53 pm

My best tip is to save money throughout the year – plus take advantage of deals when you see them! I do surveys and stuff like that to top up my Christmas savings every year.

December 5, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Carly says:

My tip is to decorate oranges with cloves and display them in a bowl, looks and smells great!

December 5, 2012 at 4:30 pm

Laura George (@lmgeorge92) says:

My tip is to fill an empty fireplace grate with white lights and cover in red fabric, when the lights turn on it looks like a fire- very warming!

December 5, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Helen says:

My tip needs a few baubles and some clear thread, and maybe a couple of drawing pins.

1) thread some clear thread across a window pane, maybe 3/4 of the way up, using the drawing pins to attach the the wall on either side or however you prefer. Alternatively, you could do what I did at my mum’s hour and find the wire the net curtains used to be on and hook that back up.

2) tie the baubles onto a single piece of clear thread each, mixing and matching the length of the threads.

3) tie the bauble threads onto the piece of thread across the winow and you have beautiful floating aubles in the window.

This looks particularly great with glittery or shiny baubles and a candle or fairy lights nearby so the baubles can catch the light.

A bit labor-intensive but very striking and works wonderfully with the cheapest of baubles.

December 5, 2012 at 5:48 pm

Lisa H says:

Gorgeous gorgeous book! I always find at this time of year, print out on old paper festive wordsearches/colour in sheets/activities and so on to keep the tribe amused at those downtimes or when you need to be wrapping items up 😉 I use a lot and they also have online games too, also get the kids a subscription, £12 and you get loads for your money – poster, weekly activity etc
Lisa x

December 5, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Rachel Christie says:

i place my tree on a small fold up table and create a kitty barrier of wrapping paper to make it look like it’s too high for my cat to jump on to from the floor. This means i can have glass decorations without the fear of a toppled tree and cut kitty paws. Bonus is that the bottom of the tree looks festive hiding the battery packs for the lights and those ugly plastic feet.

December 5, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Carolina J. says:

Oh, what a book! I like to put wooden logs under the Christmas tree- looks fantastic!

December 5, 2012 at 9:26 pm

Carolina J. says:

Commented on FB.

December 5, 2012 at 9:28 pm

sarah w says:

We like to use metal cookie cutters as tree decorations. We make the gingerbread men and stars and trees and hang them on the tree along with the cutters! Looks great! This book looks fab! I would love to make the large star you had inn your hallway! Loving your blogs Miss Thrifty!

December 5, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Cat_g says:

What a cute book. Really remind me of making decorations in with my family when I was little. I would say my decorating tip would be to make it personal. For example at the top of our tree we have a barbie from when I was a kid dressed in her biggest dress and my partner insists on having multi coloured flashing lights as he loves the kitsch Christmas element.

December 5, 2012 at 11:25 pm

it is amazing how much you can make from just white paper! buy a ream of economy / value paper and Get the kids involved … you’ll soon have snowflakes, stars, paper chains, chains of snowmen holding hands, – add a bit of glitter or give them some pens to colour in with too and they’ll have hours of fun at very little cost.

December 6, 2012 at 12:26 am

Sam says:

This book looks amazing. We like making Waldorf stars out of coloured tissue paper – there are loads of tutorials on the web for them. They look nice hung in the windows. Some great ideas in the comments, loved reading through them. Sam x

December 6, 2012 at 12:40 am

I’ve been having heaps of fun both with and without the children. I’ve actually made loads of decs this year. My tip is to upcycle tree decs with paper mache and decopatch.

December 6, 2012 at 1:09 am

Pamela Cook says:

I simply use all our cards as decoration, by strining them on red ribbons and hanging them along the walls. I also wrap all our pictures in Christmas wrapping paper and -put a bow on so they look like Christmas presents hanging on the walls

December 6, 2012 at 9:34 am

Gabrielle Svensson says:

What a lovely book!
i look out for Christmas decorations all year round on car boots and in charity shops.

December 6, 2012 at 10:45 am

Anne Lee says:

I have a very small house and little room for a Christmas tree so I use a garden obelisk. My colour scheme is dark red and silver, I put a bunch of artificial red berries inside the obelisk then wrap white lights, strings of silver beads etc around the outside, finishing off with red and silver baubles and an angel on the top. It looks great!

December 6, 2012 at 12:40 pm

Zoe S says:

I’ve ordered this book half price on the WHSmith website at the same time as my 5% discount stamps so double thriftiness! My thrifty tip is to take a Xmas cookie cutter & a potato to make a potato stamp, find any leftover paint you may have (even household emulstion works) & then potato print on brown paper to make unusual, cheap yet strong wrapping paper!

December 6, 2012 at 2:04 pm

Gaz says:

My wife buys cheap baubles and sticks some of her cross-stitched Santas, snowmen, etc. to them.

P.S.I am currently cultivating trees that grow their own decorations.
Anybody wishing to save time and money should get in touch by emailing ‘I wish decorations would grow on trees dot com’
Only idiots need apply.

December 6, 2012 at 2:22 pm

Hayley says:

Gingerbread decorations: homemade and you eat them so less clearing up after!

December 6, 2012 at 4:22 pm

Hayley Sellick says:

I love making paper chains. So so easy to do, and yet

December 6, 2012 at 11:08 pm

Karin Hall says:

At Christmas, I love taking the kids out to look for things to decorate the tree with – stars made out of twigs, home made wreaths etc etc – and we all like it (they are still small enough to think it’s great, just give them a few more years, lol)

December 7, 2012 at 12:26 am

Sue says:

I love to have a big bowl of pine cones – some left natural, some sprayed silver, some gold, and a few of the plain ones tied with red velvet ribbon – looks great!

The book sounds wonderful – thanks for all your wonderful newsletters!

December 8, 2012 at 12:14 am

Jane W says:

This book looks wonderful – a papercrafters dream. My tip for christmas decorating – origami. There are some wonderful origami patterns out there which make great decorations. Numerous stars and you can use any paper – even plain photocopy paper make lovely decorations. Also look out for decorations, cards and wrapping paper in the January sales.

December 9, 2012 at 5:34 pm

Jo M says:

My Xmas tip is decent scented Xmas candles and home fragrance-festive scents are really inviting 🙂

December 12, 2012 at 8:19 am

Sheila says:

I won. I won. I WON!! {doing the happy dance – big time!} Thank you so much – I really can’t believe it. Thanks also to all the lovely gals who, like me, joined in with this really great idea. I felt like I was in a big craft room with everyone, – during coffee time, swapping ideas. Each time a new post was made I got a little message in my ‘in box’ in my email account, and I read every single post. Every one of them was so lovely. Such great ideas. Thanks both to Miss Thrifty for the organisational skill in putting this together, and to all the gals who contributed and made this lots of fun to be a part of. Happy Christmas to all. ~ Sheila. xxx

December 20, 2012 at 1:01 am

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