Indiana Daily Student

Holiday on a Budget


It’s the end of the semester, and the bulk of your money has gone to a KOK tab (purposefully or not). Buying gifts for family and friends or decorating for the holidays can seem like a budget-killer, but good planning can make holiday shopping and decorating a little less daunting.

Gift ideas

Take-out menu box

Everyone has a foodie friend that knows all the best restaurants in town. However, this foodie friend is probably less likely to venture out in the cold winter months. Collect take-out menus from their favorite spots and assemble them together in a take-out menu box. A simple three-ring binder will work for this low-cost gift idea. Siam House Pad Thai and Netflix at your fingertips is the definition of truly living.


Take-out menus

Binder (size to preference)

Printed candles

Now that pumpkin spice everything has died out, it’s time to personalize a new scent. Grab candles of any size, non-toxic ink, and a stamp to decorate a candle specific to the gift receiver. Print the lyrics to their favorite song or a pick a pizza-shaped stamp (can’t go wrong there). Evenly spread the ink across the stamp. Then, carefully roll the stamp onto the candle and let it sit aside to dry.


Candles of any size, but preferably white so the ink shows

Non-toxic ink pad

Printed rubber stamp

Decoration ideas

Magazine Christmas tree

If Christmas trees cause allergies, or your parents don’t have a spare tree, the next logical option is a magazine tree, of course. We give you permission to use old issues of INSIDE for this project.


Gather magazines of any size.

Open the magazine to bend the spine. Make it as malleable as possible.

Fold each page from the top right corner to the spine.

Take that same page and fold it into the spine again.

Fold the triangle bits hanging at the bottom up into the pages.

Repeat these steps for each page until the magazine stands upright.

Ornament display

An alternative way to incorporate ornaments into decorating is to display them in a glass jar or vase. Simply stack the ornaments into the color, shape, and size preference of your liking, and you’re left with a center piece pretty enough to rival the stack of notes sitting adjacent for finals week.

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