Sweet home. White Christmas decor on vintage natural wooden background. Cinnamon sticks and dried citrus. Cafe shelf.

Dollar Store Décor Hacks for the Winter Season

Picking a décor scheme can be one of the most exciting parts of coordinating an event! Clients get excited to figure out what kind of atmosphere they want to build and what they’d like their guests’ reactions to be. The décor could be captured in hundreds of pictures, so clients want it to be unique and worth seeing!

Depending on the style of event your clients have chosen, it’s easy to spend a large portion of the budget on décor. As the planner, you’ll want to:

  • Establish a good color scheme.
  • Make sure the décor matches the theme or purpose of the event.
  • Make sure it represents your clients’ style and the desired atmosphere.

If you’re creative, however, there are ways to “hack” event décor in order to make it stylish and affordable. Especially if your clients are hands-on, DIY-loving people, the dollar store is a gold mine of possibility!

Here are examples of 5 budget-friendly dollar store hacks that will go with any winter-themed event!

Glass bead vase

Whether your clients want glowing candles or elegant flowers as their centerpieces, helping them make their own glass bead vases can be fun and fancy. At the dollar store, you’ll need:

  • Glass vases (even large, steady glass cups will do if they’re a shape you enjoy)
  • Glass beads that complement the color scheme (look for the smooth kind with one flat side that you’ve probably seen in the bottom of vases at hotels). Choose two or three shades for an ombré effect!
  • Strong glue

Supplies for winter dollar store decor

Glue the flat side of the glass beads all around the vase. Cover the entire thing, stop half way up, or create a design with different colored beads. The effect will be a shiny, almost frosty look. Particularly if you choose beads in shades of blue, green, and turquoise, your vases will resemble ice! Place flowers of complementary colors in the vase, or light a candle inside so the flame glows through the colored glass.

Salt & pepper snowmen

Living in a place where it doesn’t snow is no excuse for not making a snowman or two! Let a couple of adorable snow-people give your winter tablescape some personality by transforming salt and pepper shakers using dollar store supplies. You’ll need:

  • Glass shakers with screw off tops (two for each table)
  • White paint to paint the shakers
  • Black paint or black beads for the “coal” eyes and mouth
  • Orange paint or orange felt for the carrot nose
  • Red, plaid, or burlap fabric for the scarf around the top of the shaker
  • A paint brush
  • Glue

If you and your clients are very creative, consider making snow-people with different styles and personalities. You might even sprinkle the shakers with white glitter while the paint is drying so that it sticks and makes them sparkle like real snow. Just make sure people can tell which ones are salt and which ones are pepper! On the back, paint an “S” or a “P” so no one’s dinner is ruined.

Wreath place settings

Supplies for making a wreath

When it comes to holiday dinners, nothing sets the mood like a gorgeous winter place setting. Guests will appreciate the style and care that went into each person’s spot at the table. Give dinner some rustic winter style by resting each plate on a holiday wreath.

Depending on the rest of the décor, choose between wreaths of woven branches or ones made of green firs. Dollar stores often sell pre-made false wreaths, which are cheaper, more durable, and last longer than real, delicate wreaths. Spruce them up with ribbons, glitter, or berries to incorporate your color scheme and style!

Cinnamon stick hanging decorations

Sometimes the best way to establish a real holiday atmosphere is through smell! The aroma of dinner cooking will do part of the work for you, but you can really make it smell like Christmas by using cinnamon sticks in your décor. At the dollar store, pick up:

  • 6-inch cinnamon sticks
  • Jute twine (the kind that looks like a tiny rope)
  • Glitter, false berries, faux wreath pipe cleaner, and any other details that strike your fancy!
  • Glue to put it all together

Create a bundle of cinnamon sticks tied with jute twine to look like Yule logs or position them across each other and wind the ends together in the shape of a star. Glue on your “fir” wreaths or sprinkle them with some frosty white glitter. Place a fragrant bundle at each place setting or loop more jute twine through the top of each star and hang them throughout the room!

Cinnamon sticks dollar store decor

North Pole walkway lanterns

The dollar store can even help you light up the path to your event without breaking the budget! Add a cute holiday-themed touch by creating lanterns that tell guests they’re headed to the “North Pole.” You’ll need:

  • Solar powered path lights. These are usually sold in a box of 6 and some dollar stores even offer lights that are already Christmas-themed. If yours doesn’t, a little paint and glitter will do the trick!
  • Foam circles for the base (or one longer foam cylinder that you cut carefully into thin circle bases with an Exacto knife)
  • Fake snow, cotton stuffing, glitter, or other faux-wintery material you think will look best covering the bases
  • Wooden Popsicle sticks for the signpost
  • Scrapbooking labels for the sign
  • A roll of fine gold chain or thin gold ribbon to hang the sign
  • Glue to put it all together

Cover your foam circle base in whatever “snow” you’ve chosen. For example, brush a thin layer of white school glue over the surface and sprinkle it with white glitter. Glue the bottom of your (decorated or pre-bought) lantern to the base and let it dry.

Glue two Popsicle sticks together perpendicular in an upside down “L” shape. Glue one side of your “L” down the lantern stand so the other side sticks out like a signpost.

On your scrapbooking label, neatly write “North Pole” or “North Pole, this way!” Cut a length of gold chain or ribbon and glue it to the back of the sign half way along. Next, glue the ends around the signpost so the sign hangs down. Place the lanterns along the path with enough time to solar charge, and let them lead the way!

Get creative!

Making crafty dollar store décor will do more than just keep your event more affordable. DIY projects are a chance for you and your clients to get to know each other better. They’re also a fun opportunity for them to bond with each other or their kids, and their crafts will add a personal touch to the atmosphere.

Do you know other great winter dollar store hacks that will transform an event? Tell us about them in the comments!

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