12 Unique Ways To Use Christmas Lights Around Your House

If you’re like me, you waited all of 2 seconds to start decorating for Christmas once the Thanksgiving leftovers were put away. I didn’t used to get carried away with decorating, but now I feel like every year I have to one-up myself. And I never decorate the same way twice. Each surface is just a bit different than the year before–a garland added here, a sprig of mistletoe strategically-placed there. So when you feel like you have a ton of crap in plastic bins and no creativity to speak of, look no further. It’s amazing what you can do with a few strands of Christmas lights and a little inspiration.

1. Turn a string of lights into an illuminated wall sign.

homemade christmas lights decorations 12 Unique Ways To Use Christmas Lights Around Your House

Other ideas for what you can spell out: Merry, Bright, Cheer, Ho Ho Ho, Peace, Snow. Or you could just do a sign that says “Bar” with an arrow pointing towards your barcart.

2. Or make a wall tree to display your holiday cards and family photos.

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Just switch out the twine for lights and you’ll have a bright way to display the colorful cards you get in the mail, or even all those family Christmas photos you’ve accumulated over the years. Add a few funky ornaments and a star at the top to really make it pop!

3. Make this light-wrapped star with a few yardsticks and some paint.

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If you’re got 20 minutes and $5, this cute star is a great way to feel uber-crafty without actually doing very much” work.” Plus, you can leave it up all year round!

4. Fill an old lantern or candle holder for a pretty table centerpiece.

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These are battery-operating fairy lights, but you can easily switch ’em out for your go-to strands. Cover up the protruding plug by wrapping some garland around the base of each lantern.

5. Or fill some empty wine bottles instead.

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Look, we know you have some lying around, or at least you will soon when the parties start happening.

6. Bring the holiday cheer into your bedroom by decorating your bedframe.

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You’ve decorated your front door, living room, and kitchen, but what about your boudoir? Turn up the coziness when you turn down the lights, and hey, how about a little extra mood lighting (*wink wink*).

7. Make an eco-friendly tree with an inexpensive tomato cage.

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If you have a few strands of lights lying around, head over to your local home and garden store and pick up a tomato cage. I’m putting mine outside to light up the front porch.

8. Create a backlit canvas.

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Make your own or take a piece of art that’s store-bought and give it a little extra holiday flair.

9. Decorate a non-working fireplace with a few logs draped in lights for a similar effect.

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It’s currently 81 degrees in Austin, so if you’re like us and not planning on using your fireplace anytime soon, this cute alternative brings the cozy without the heat.

10. Make a flameless campfire for the kiddos.

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Give the kids a way to experience some holiday magic when it’s too cold/wet to go outdoors. Plus, who wouldn’t want a way to change up your nightly story time routine? Throw some pillows down and crowd around the fire, just add cocoa.

11. Got a bike, guitar, surf or snowboard propped up against a wall? Light it up!

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Literally everything becomes holiday decoration when you wrap lights around it. Don’t be afraid to embrace your whimsical side.

12. Get creative with your family Christmas card.

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Dress us yourselves, your kids, even your pets if they’ll cooperate. LED strands are typically safe to handle when lit. Just be sure to check the packaging first.

Related-ish: 17 Ways To Deck Out Your Tiny-Ass Apartment For The Holidays

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