The 12 Best Holiday Hacks of All Time

Black Friday and Cyber Monday may have already passed, but don't worry—you don't have to shop 'til you drop to make things merry and bright this season. We've scoured the Web for 12 resourceful hacks to make your home—and your holiday—magical and memorable, without breaking the bank.

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  1. Wrap It Up


    Brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of our favorite things...under the Christmas tree this year! Wrap toys and trinkets in brown paper bags adorned with baker’s twine and alphabet monogram gift tags to offer up rustic charm with a personal touch.

    Related: 8 Clever Ways to Reuse Wrapping Paper via apartmentlife

  2. Stovetop Scent-sation


    You don’t have to be a master chef to infuse your home with the unforgettable aroma of your favorite festive foods. Make like the blogger at I Heart Naptime and fill a pot with lush cranberries and oranges as well as fragrant cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, then let it simmer on the stove, emitting spiced potpourri to immerse the senses.

    Related: 8 Ways to Make Your House Smell Like the Holidays

  3. Chilled Evening


    Don’t let a lukewarm bottle of bubbly throw a wet blanket on your holiday joy. Instead, try this quick trick: Wrap a dry paper towel around a warm champagne or wine bottle, and place it in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the bottles, pour out your rapidly chilled potables, and watch your celebration heat up!

    Related: 17 Mini Bars to Mix Up Your Home Decor

  4. Thyme for Leftovers


    If you have fistfuls of leftover herbs that didn't get to dress the holiday bird, give them fresh purpose by proudly displaying them on empty walls and cabinet fronts. Simply trim remnant herb sprigs and stick them to the walls using washi tape scrawled with messages of holiday cheer.

    Related: DIY Lite—Make an Herb Garden from Kitchen Recyclables via Paige Russell

  5. Ladder to Success


    Take holiday decorating one step at a time—literally—with this nontraditional and easy-to-stow Christmas tree ladder. Using this Instructables tutorial, transform the rungs of a ladder into the painted “boughs” of a tree brimming with gifts and solid craftsmanship.

    Related: DIY Lite—The One Christmas Tree That's Not a Pain to Store via Paige Russell

  6. Take a Bow


    Don’t wait to deck the halls with boughs of holly when in mere minutes you can deck the door  with bows of holly-red fabric. This artful decoration from Ohoh Blog uses a combination of light and dark red organza, but any festive fabric will do the trick—even cut-up bedsheets. Wrap the "ribbons" around your front door and secure them with staples to treat your guests to the gift of a stunning entryway.

    Related: 12 Totally Unexpected Ways to DIY a Holiday Wreath

  7. Smart Cookies


    This year, forgo the cookie-cutter tradition of packaging holiday baked goods in plastic containers or, if you're an overachiever, a store-bought Christmas tin. The exceptional hostess at Aunt Peaches recommends wrapping empty cardboard boxes from foil rolls with craft paper to repurpose them into lightweight cookie "tins" that are ideal for gifts and leftovers from holiday cookie swaps.

    Related: 11 Seriously Surprising Uses for Ziploc Bags

  8. Mint Condition


    Take a short and sweet approach to table setting with these miniature candy-cane place card holders from Industrious Justice. After gluing together upside-down candy canes, nestle name cards or food labels in the front two “hooks” of the candy canes to pepper your holiday dinner table with style.

    Related: 13 Seriously Doable Ways to DIY a Kitchen Table

  9. Snow Day


    Ordinary coffee filters are transformed into special snowflakes in this heartwarming holiday decoration from crafter Elsie Marley. After brewing a cup of joe for yourself, flatten and fold a couple of unused coffee filters, then cut them into your favorite snowflake pattern. Your lacy paper creations will be perfectly round and symmetrical every time—although no two will be alike!

    Related: 15 Insanely Easy Ways to Decorate for the Holidays

  10. In Plain Sight


    After the holidays, don’t relegate wrapping paper rolls to the back of the closet; give them a permanent dwelling on a desk or countertop, gathered in an attractive hamper basket or a simple dip-dyed storage canister. The talented DIYer at Home Made By Carmona coated the outer rim of her glass canister with gold spray paint for that dazzling metallic finish.

    Related: 11 Insanely Easy 60-Minute Paint Projects

  11. On the Hook


    This no-nail solution to door decor from Pretty Dubs is perfect for homeowners leery of damaging their entry door when they hang a wreath. First, place an upside-down Command hook along the top of the interior of your door. Then, fasten a long, festive twine or ribbon around the hook and over the top of the door for an ingenious alternative method to secure a wreath.

    Related: 7 Clever Ways for Hooks to Streamline Your Life

  12. "Faux" Real


    You won’t have to fake enthusiasm for your artificial Christmas tree when it stands atop a genuine wood tree trunk, as seen on the blog Something's Hiding in Here. Collect a tree stump from your local tree service, and bore a hole in the center to accommodate the base of your tree to bring the beauty of nature indoors.

    Related: Look Alive—8 Ways to Make Your Fake Tree Fool Anyone via

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