Christmas is not only the ‘most wonderful time of the year’ but also the most expensive. For students, the plethora of costs can make the difference between actual meals or solely instant noodles for seven days a week. However, one of the most magical parts of this festive season is decorating our flats and houses, without our families dictating the exact number of millimetres that have to be between each bauble on the tree. Becoming the next expert on ‘Grand Designs’ is an expensive venture though, so I’m here to help you give your home a student-friendly Christmas makeover that won’t break your bank – and that’s sustainable too!
1) Do you have an empty bottle of lemonade or cola laying around after an intense pres session? If so, you can easily make this into a sweet snowman decoration that doubles up as storage for your mini marshmallows – at the ready for those festive hot chocolates we’ll all be consuming in the hundreds. All you need to do is fill the cleaned bottle with white marshmallows and then glue on some little buttons, googly eyes and felt for the nose and a scarf. Finally cut a doughnut shape out of card and put it over the lid to make a top hat and add some glitter if you’re feeling extra festive.
2) It’s not just leftover bottles that can be used, but bottle caps as well. By keeping the tops from your beers, you can make the cutest hanging decorations for your tree. You only need two bottle caps per ornament as well as a bit of string and optionally some paint. Simply hot glue or blue tack the caps together so they make an orb shape (making a loop of string in between them). Then decorate them however you want with the paint and you’re done!
3) If your taste is more suited to a fine wine than beer (this is Exetah after all) then these little reindeer will be perfect for you. All you need for one is two corks and some twigs. Use one cork for the body and one for the head, with twigs screwed in for the neck, legs, antlers and tail. Then, if you want to you can add a tiny pom-pom for Rudolph’s red nose and a little bell as a collar, and then use a sharpie for the eyes and mouth. With all the mulled wine you’ll be making you’re bound to have enough corks to make all nine of Santa’s fluffy helpers.
However, with all the last-minute essays due in the week before term, it can be hard to find time to spend on Christmas crafting; so, if all else fails you can always just cut some shapes into a piece of paper for a classic home-made snowflake or if you’re really lazy, there’s always Poundland.
– Abi Chandler