Even if you're expecting coal this year instead of diamonds, you can fill the house with faux gift boxes and dream. Wrap blank art canvases in assorted shapes and sizes with colorful ribbon, then prop them up on a mantel for a cool yet cheerful study in white. And next year, be good for goodness' sake.
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Create a heavenly stairway for your little angels by wrapping the banister with a string of fairy lights entwined with a length of feather trim. Either twirl the swag around the banister or attach it every few inches or so with ribbon or clear fishing line.
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Give store-bought presents a crafty touch by using wooden tags instead of those self-adhesive Santas. Spell out the good boy or girl's name with stick-on letters.
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Time to retire the felt Christmas stockings with the kids' names written in glitter? You'll fit more booty in a canvas tote personalized with iron-on letters. Another use: a gift bag with an afterlife.
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Tie big silver bells to the front doorknob with holiday ribbon, as a seasonal alternative to the usual ding-dong. Even if visitors miss the hint and press the doorbell out of habit, the bells will welcome them when you open the door.
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No need to spring for holiday place mats when $1 red felt rectangles can do the job. Tie a matching ribbon to the stem of a wineglass and upend it on a plate for flair, and string yarn with round wooden beads as a centerpiece.
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Use wooden quilting hoops to create a mobile that floats over the table like a weightless chandelier. Turn the inner ring 180 degrees and wood-glue it to the outer ring at the top. Choose various sizes and hang the spheres at different lengths with clear fishing line and thumbtacks.
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Fill unfinished wooden candlesticks in two heights with tall tapers and place them by a window to light the way for Santa. Or line up nine for a modern take on a menorah. Add another level of interest with a few turned-wood finials.
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Fill a brandy snifter to the brim with silver bells of all sizes. You won't hear them ring-a-ling, but they will dress a table in sparkling holiday style.
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Help guests stick to the seating plan by spearing wooden or bamboo knitting needles through place cards and setting one in each (empty) water glass.
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Break out the construction paper to make note cards, gift tags, or place cards personalized with a rubber stamp. For place cards, use various paper and ink colors. After dinner, present guests with additional sheets stamped with their monogram as a parting gift.
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Decorate a windowsill or a mantel with Frosty and other jolly, happy souls. Join two foam balls (larger on the bottom, smaller on top) with a toothpick, and mass snowmen of different heights. Secure the bases with double-sided tape.