To my truly frugal friends, changing Christmas themes each year seems a little odd. Many of my friends reuse their decorating items each year, adding a new one every now and then, but keeping things the same for the most part. I do things a little differently.
I generally choose my theme based on the clearance rack paper I find in the weeks after Christmas. This past January I found gorgeous rolls of blue and white paper that inspired this year's theme. I generally spend about $10 to decorate my tree each year. I know I save at least that much by buying the paper on clearance. I tend to use decorating the tree a project each year, with some more involved than others. Although I might start off with a certain idea, I am flexible enough to let it change within the spectrum of the same theme.
This year's tree features white origami flowers that turned out beautifully, but the beginning idea was to have different kinds of origami. As we learned how to make several different pieces, the girls and I loved the way these turned out. We still had a basic version of the original idea.
When you find a good starting point (like paper), then reuse things you already have so that you can get the most for your money. If you can incorporate some neutral items from last year's tree, then go ahead! It doesn't have to be all new to get a fresh look each year.
If you like lots of different papers, try looking around for items you already have. A houseful of boys would be receptive to a tree decorated with Hot Wheels cars. A little girl's room looks adorable with a tree full of pretty hair ribbons tied on the tree. The idea is to get something unique to this year -- not to spend tons of money!
I like to think that each year with my children changes as they age and change themselves. Although it may be traditional to have the same tree every year, our tradition is to find something new. It definitely works for us!
For more WFMW fun, go on over to Rocks in My Dryer to see what the rest of the crew has to say.