It’s hard to not love the festive feel of a home decorated for the winter holidays, with all of the brilliant colors and sparkling lights that you associate with happy memories. Putting away the decorations in January can be a bit of a shock, not to mention the fact that now you have boxes of supplies you won’t see again for 11 months. However, it doesn’t have to be that way if you re-purpose your favorite decorations in creative and original ways.
Here are some ideas about how to make your home seem more festive with the use of re-purposed Christmas decor:
Holiday lights: Strings of colored lights don’t tend to have many uses beyond Christmas, but white lights make a versatile year-round decoration. Hang them loosely around the upper edges of a room to cast a soft glow about when the harshness of a single bulb would be too much. They’re perfect for dorm rooms, reading nooks and cozy basement family rooms. You can even use a string of lights to make a gorgeous and elegant headboard for your bedroom. White lights also make the perfect outdoor patio lighting for your evening parties.
Christmas tree: While fresh trees need to be taken down because they’re drying out, you can actually repurpose an artificial tree for other holidays. A white Christmas tree, for example, can be a great Valentine’s Day decoration, and kids will enjoy making Valentines to hang on the tree. You can dress-up your white tree again in red-white-and-blue decorations when July 4th rolls around.
Simple wreath: Although some wreaths scream “Christmas,” a plain artificial green wreath can serve as a great backdrop for many holidays. Decorate a wreath with gold coins and shamrocks for St. Patrick’s Day. Decorate with streamers and miniature caps and gowns to commemorate a high school graduation. Or use decorative bunnies and plastic eggs to make an Easter wreath. You can adapt a wreath to work for almost every holiday.
Leftover odds and ends: The last parts of your holiday decorations and supplies can serve plenty of creative purposes in your home. Cloth holiday ribbon can find a second life as napkin rings, shower curtain rings, cuff links, or simply crisscross ribbon over a piece of cardboard to make a photo display board. Two candy canes make a perfect heart shape for Valentine’s Day. Green tableware can make another appearance in March for St. Patrick’s Day. And you can use simple ornaments in the same color family to create beautiful centerpieces for special dinners. Just take a look at whatever you have left and think outside the box for original ways to use it during other parts of the year!
Repurposing holiday decorations is definitely an art, because you have to walk the fine line of being creative and looking like you’re too lazy to put away your holiday decorations. But in any home where children are present, the opportunity to add a little sparkle or something special to otherwise ordinary holidays is always welcome.
You can find a lot of inspiration online by looking at sites like Pinterest to see how other people reuse Christmas embellishments. Don’t be afraid to be the first person on your block to have a Valentine’s Day tree – you may just be setting a new trend!