Looking for cheap Christmas decorations? It’s time to DIY!

From coffee filters to toilet rolls (yes, really!), you'll be surprised at what can come in handy.

Christmas can be an expensive time of year… and especially when costs of everything is only going north, it helps to find cost savings in our holiday prep. The solution? Making your own Christmas decorations – they are not only cheap but also a great way to bond with the family.

If you’re ready to get crafty, here is your go-to guide to our road-tested DIY cheap Christmas decorations. 

Coffee filter Christmas trees 

Create festive cheer in every corner of your home with these whimsical trees. 

You will need: 
  • Acrylic paint.
  • Water.
  • 20 basket-style coffee filters.
  • Scissors.
  • A styrofoam or cardboard cone.
  • Hot glue.

The steps:
  1. Dilute about 1-2 tablespoons of acrylic paint in 1 cup of water in a shallow bowl. Keep in mind, the colour will lighten on drying.
  2. Dip a pile of about 20 basket-style filters in the paint solution until the colour absorbs, then squeeze out any excess liquid and lay them out to dry. Once dry, separate filters and get ready to craft!
  3. Cut a centre circle out of the dyed coffee filters (save for later) leaving a ring that is about 4cm wide.
  4. Cut the ring open to make a long ruffle. Now, working from the base of a styrofoam or cardboard cone (ours were 20cm and 25cm tall), pleat the ruffle and hot glue it to the cone. Work your way up until you reach the top. About 6-7 filters per tree.
  5. To finish, take one of those reserved circles, pinch into a little cone and glue to the top of your tree.

Cardboard Christmas wreath

Move over traditional wreaths – this contemporary wreath will look ever so stylish hung on your door.

You will need:
  • White cotton fabric or wide ribbon.
  • Scissors and/or electronic cutting machine.
  • Medium weight cardstock (white/cream) or old Christmas cards.
  • Foam wreath base.
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks

  1. Cut white fabric into 5-8cm wide strips (or use ribbon) and wrap around foam base covering all surfaces. Use hot glue to secure.
  2. From the cardstock cut assorted leaf shapes, about 80-100 depending on the size of your wreath base.
  3. Fold the holly leaves down the centre to add dimension.
  4. Start gluing leaves onto ring base ensuring all the leaves are pointing in the same general direction. Mix and match sizes and angles for  a natural look.
  5. Finish by filling in any gaps with accent pieces such as pine frond and berry sprig shapes. 

Festive bunting

DIY some festive bunting this holiday season in just seven steps.

You will need:
  • Baking paper.
  • Air-dry terracotta clay (250g makes about 6).
  • Rolling pin.
  • Crochet doily or textured lace fabric.
  • Cookie cutter shapes.
  • Drinking straw.
  • Drying rack.
  • Scissors.
  • Wooden beads.
  • Suede cording or twine.

  1. Roll out some baking paper to create a non-stick surface to work on and knead your clay to soften and get rid of air bubbles. Roll out a slab of clay to just under 5mm thickness.
  2. Lay your lace fabric over the clay and use your rolling pin to firmly press the fabric into the clay to create a pattern.
  3. Carefully remove the lace to reveal the design that has now imprinted in the terracotta clay.
  4. Using a cookie cutter, carefully cut out shapes from the patterned clay.
  5. With a drinking straw, cut out a small hole at the top of the clay shape for easy threading later.
  6. Leave your ornament to dry for 24-48hrs. Drying time will depend on the weather.
  7. To make a tag or hang your ornament, cut a length of suede cord (or twine) to about 32cm and thread one end through the hole. Thread both ends of cord through a wooden bead, and slip the bead down close to the clay shape. Knot the cord ends to secure.

Decoupage baubles

Here’s our favourite way to up-cycle old baubles around Christmas time

You will need: 
  • Old baubles.
  • Paper Serviette.
  • PVA glue.

  1. Start by priming your bauble (a white base works best, as any white on the serviette will become transparent when glued).
  2. Separate the layers of your napkin so that you are left with the design as a single ply and tear into rough pieces.
  3. Using PVA glue, paint a thin layer on the bauble and when covered, place your first torn piece then paint over with more glue. Continue until covered.
  4. When dry, brush over another layer of glue to give a glossier finish.

Fabric twine ornaments

The beauty of DIY twine is you can make it in any colour combination you like, so save your scrap fabric and offcuts during the year.

You will need:
  • Old Christmas bauble ornament/s.
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks.
  • Length of recycled fabric twine (about 1-2 metre per bauble).
  • Scissors.
  • Cord or ribbon for hanging

  1. Starting from  the top of the bauble, closest to the hanging cap, add a small bead of hot glue.
  2. Working quickly, glue the fabric twine around the cap. Continue in a spiral fashion down the bauble.
  3. Hold the twine down firmly until the glue just sets, then move onto the next section.
  4. Continue wrapping fabric twine around the bauble till the whole ball is covered.
  5. To finish, snip off the remaining twine and glue the end down neatly.
  6. Add a ribbon or twine for hanging.

Toilet roll stars and angels

Who said toilet rolls were a waste? Rather than tossing them, use them to make these adorable stars and angels.

You will need:
  • Toilet rolls.
  • Scissors.
  • Craft glue or a hot glue gun
  • Pegs and twine. 


For each star, you’ll need one toilet paper roll.

  1. Flatten the roll. Cut into 6 rings of equal width ( about 1.5cm wide).
  2. Add a small dab of glue to one end of each flattened ring and glue the points of the tube to one another, forming the star shape.
  3. While they dry, clamp the rings together with small pegs.
  4. To finish, add twine.


Each angel requires two rolls.

  1. Once both rolls are flattened, cut one into 6 equal rings that are about 1.5cm wide.
  2. Make the wings by pinching 3 rings together in the centre and then gluing at the join and to each other.
  3. Make the skirt by gluing the point of three rings (like making half a star).
  4. Glue the top of the skirt to the wings and secure with pegs until dry.
  5. Make your angel’s head from the second roll.
  6. Cut a 1.5cm ring and then cut again into 2 rectangle sections.
  7. Fold one rectangle into a circle and glue to the top of your angel’s wings, using a peg to hold until dry.

Ready to craft? Get started with the below

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