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How to Decorate for Christmas Fast

Set a Holiday Mood in as Few as Five Minutes

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You don’t have to set aside an entire weekend or even an entire day to decorate for Christmas. With just a few dollars, you can give your home a festive feel in as little as five minutes.

Decide how much time you have to decorate, then grab your decorations and set your timer. Here's what you should do if you have ...

5 Minutes

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Appeal to the senses. Light, scent and sound evoke strong feelings and spread a festive mood even without decorations. Dim the overheads and light balsam or cranberry scented candles. Put some holiday music on surround sound. You guests will never miss the Christmas tree.

30 Minutes

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Do all of the above and spend the remainder of your time concentrating on the area where you and your guests will spend the most amount of time. Make a welcoming entrance by hanging a wreath or a bell on the front door. Throw a few holiday pillows around your living room. If you’ll be serving a meal this holiday season or you have viewable table space, set your table.

2 Hours

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Do all of the above plus put up your tree and add lights and a topper. Try to position your tree by a front-facing window but don’t worry about decorating it; this can come later or not at all. Just having a tree with lights (especially with dim overheads and candles flickering) will send a “Happy Holiday” message.

If you have time leftover, place your ornaments in a glass bowl or vase. That way they are easily accessible and you can hang a few here and there when you have a minute, or leave them in the vase throughout the season to decorate a coffee table or shelf.

4 Hours

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Do all of the above plus decorate your tree and mantle. Wrap your presents and scatter them around the room or use smaller ones as a table centerpiece. If you have any time left, pop a bottle of bubbly and sit on your sofa and admire the view.

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