How to Decorate Outside for the Holidays, Yourself

Like many families, our family goes all out when it comes to decorating our house for holidays. Year over year we find ourselves adding items to the mix. Before you know it, you have thousands of dollars sitting in your front yard.

This year, we decided to think of ways to “update” our decor to make it look different, but we did not want to spend a ton of money. I browsed through Pinterest for days on end and finally decided that we were going to make our own outside signs and recreate “Whoville” in our yard. We are beyond thrilled with how it turned out and spent less than $100 doing it.

Creating Outdoor Weatherproof Signs:

1. Get sheets of corrugated plastic (these can be bought at your local hardware store or online)

2. Prime the sheets of plastic. Paint does not stick well to plastic so primer is a must! (we used a spray all-purpose primer)

3. Outline what you want to create with pencil.

4. Paint your design. (we used basic craft acrylic paint and brushes)

Painted shapes

5. Outline your design in black. This gives it definition from far away.

6. Cut away any excess plastic or your shape, so it is not just a square. Boxcutters work best.

Defined sign with outline and cutting away excess

7. Spray with an outdoor sealant or topcoat. This will make the signs “weatherproof”. (we used a spray topcoat from the local hardware store)

Holiday Lighting:

If you want to light up your signs so that people can see them at night, we found the best way is using basic LED flood lights (we went with color changing). They can be purchased online or at your local hardware store. They can be flat panels that need to be plugged in or just solar lights that stick in the ground. There are SO MANY options out there and they range in price. Depending on how you set them up, one light can cover multiple signs.

Colored flood light on sign
Colored LED flood light on sign

We also use solar powered twinkle light strands. These are pretty cheap and run by the sun. You can get a variety of colors or just do white. We wrap our trees, signs, and even railings with them.

Another great light affect, that is fairly cheap, is curtain lights. These can be bought online, and we string them across our windows (behind the blinds). It makes our house stand out and they look so pretty. These just plug into an outlet and use very little energy because they are LED.


If you already have a projector or plan to get one, this is an easy way to decorate! You just hang a white sheet over a window and at night, you can project any movie or image onto it. It looks so great from the outside and is super easy to do!

house decorated for the holidays
Projecting and windows with “curtain lights”

Check out my post on preparing for a fun snow day too!

-Kristy M., Mommy to Many


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