I am a big fan of old fashioned Christmas lights...our electric bill loved them too, as it went up and up this time of year. The lights would also burn out quickly, leaving dark empty spots every few days. So, it was more than time for their retirement, much to my dismay. Even though they have been replaced by efficient LED lights, I saved all the old fashioned ones still. We re-strung a red, white and blue strand for the 4th of July and an orange, green and white strand for St. Patrick's Day. There were still plenty more, though, which I had planned to pile into a big jar at Christmas time.
Then, as we were unpacking decorations this year I decided I was tired of our engraved brass stocking holders. Way back when Sean was starting as a teacher, he was a long-term substitute and didn't get paid over the break. Therefore, he took an extra job at the engraving store at the mall. The employee discount was significant, which meant we ended up with several engraved items that Christmas. We have used the brass stocking holders for fourteen years and I wanted to try something new.
I didn't want to invest in buying new stocking holders in case I changed my mind again quickly. We also did not have much crafting time over Thanksgiving weekend. That combination of factors somehow ended up meaning I filled quart size mason jars with lights and immediately had new stocking holders. I used some painters tape on the mantle to reinforce the ribbon strung through the stocking loops and set the jars on top of it.
It cost nothing, I got to use my favorite lights and it was done quickly.