The holiday season comes with lots of pressure to turn homes and yards into winter wonderlands. Whether the motivation is prepping for the big family gathering or keeping up with the neighbors' festive displays, sticking to a tight budget can be difficult. But don't let the holiday spirit flag just yet. Here are suggestions for inexpensive Christmas decorations that ring in the holiday season with style. (Note: Prices are subject to change.)
The life cycle of an artificial Christmas tree makes it a far cheaper option than the real thing. The key to selecting the perfect specimen is to focus on the number of needle tips. The more tips, the fuller and more realistic the tree looks.
Those with small apartments looking for something petite and cheery may spring for this Hillside Pine Tree from Michael's ($22). There are 290 shapeable branch tips and 150 bright lights. At time of writing, the price is slashed more than half off. This little tree earned a solid 4.8 stars from over 400 reviews.
Once the tree is set up, it's time to add the ornaments. A search through big-box retailers' sites shows pricing of $1 to $2 per ornament in high- quality box sets. More bang for the buck is available in larger quantities.
Make the kids happy and impress the neighbors with inflatable Christmas characters from Walmart. Stick with the classics, including Frozen's Olaf and a 4-foot snowman for $15. Prices swell for brand-name characters: nearly $50 for Minion Dave. All inflatables come with stakes and tethers, and consumers report that the characters fill with air in seconds for no-fuss setup.