Transform Festively For Free

For some of us mere wage slaves, the workplace can be a rather sterile environment at this time of year. If the tinsel and lights of the season cease abruptly when you step across the threshold, you may wish to consider creating a more copacetic environment for yourself and your colleagues.

There’s something very joyous and affirming about transforming a space and turning it to your own ends temporarily. As this is an expensive time of year, my projected budget for this project is zero.

You can work with found materials – recycled or repurposed whenever possible – and create a very pleasing effect.


You can make these from old documents, plastic carrier bags, newspapers or whatever you like. For the purposes of this demonstration, I will use a paper towel from the bathroom.

Layer 8 sheets of your chosen material together. If you want a round pompom, trim them to a square. If an oval pompom suits you, they can be oblong.

Concertina fold them together into a strip.

Secure the strip in the middle. I am using the kind of rubber bands our mail comes secured with. Add another band or a string of any type to this, so that you can hang the pompom easily afterward.

Round off the edges of the strip with scissors.

Allow it to unfold into a fan shape, then pull the layers apart and fluff, fluff, fluff until you have a full pompom ready to hang up.

Soft flexible materials are the easiest to work with, but if you use standard A4 printer paper, you get a nice, crinkled, stiff result.



I had some obsolete till rolls I used for mine, so they are very long- but you can just as well make short streamers with whatever the best paper option is available to you.

Just cut your paper into narrow strips, and then roll each strip into a tight wind around a pencil. Clamp your fingers over it to warm it up a little before releasing – then you can allow the now-curly streamer to unwind.

Hang in bunches.


Paper chains

I’m not going to insult your intelligence by giving instructions for making paper chains. I’m only mentioning them at all because otherwise it might not occur to you to make them, and there’s a reason they’re the classic Christmas decoration.

I used more old till roll for mine, but old newspapers are ideal for this as they give a lovely variegated look to the thing.


Yes, more nursery school crafting, but these are still so satisfying to make. Take a piece of paper and fold one corner to the opposite edge, then trim off the outer strip to make the paper square.

Fold again and again until the folds are too thick to continue, then round off the corners, and snip away at the resulting cone-shape until you’ve made as many holes as possible. Using a hole punch might be helpful.


Open it up to reveal your snowflake, all ready to be taped to a windowpane.

I find making this kind of thing to be really therapeutic –  it’s fun to make up your own variants on the theme, and transformation of an established norm always feels empowering.

So make your mark and create something from nothing: Presto!


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Miss Caly says:

    These are such great ideas – cheap and so easy! I’ll definitely try these for my Christmas party this year 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ariadne says:

      Thank you! I think it really cheered people at work up 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

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