The 100-yen shop chain comes to the holiday rescue.

Japan loves Christmas light displays on city streets and at shopping centers, but decorating at home can be tricky, especially if you’re looking to put up a Christmas tree of your own. Organic Christmas trees are pretty much impossible to find for sale, while plastic varieties aren’t as plentiful as they are in the west, and are usually more expensive to boot. But perhaps the biggest problem with having a Christmas tree in your home in Japan is finding a place to put it, since floorspace is always at a premium in Japanese homes, especially if you’re living in a studio apartment.

There’s a solution to those problems of interior and budget space, though, waiting at Daiso, Japan’s favorite 100 yen shop. First, you’ll need to get a roll of masking tape and adhesive-backed hooks.

▼ The hooks come nine-to-a-pack, and we recommend getting two packs for a total of 18 hooks.

Next, grab two strings of tinsel, which Daiso also sells at this time of year. They’re each 1.5 meters (4.9 feet) long, and we opted for two different colors for a little extra visual variety.

Our plan also calls for a string of Christmas lights and some assorted Christmas armaments. Since we already had some on hand, we didn’t bother checking Daiso for them, but the chain sells various Christmas baubles during the holiday season, so they should have enough supplies for you even if you’re starting from scratch.

Now that you’ve got everything you need, start by making a large upside-down V in masking tape on the wall where you want your tree to go.

At the top, place three hooks in a triangular pattern, each with their hook outwardly oriented like this.

By the way, if you’re wondering why we’re bothering with the masking tape and not just sticking the hooks directly to the wall, it’s because the masking tape will be easier to remove once the holidays are over and we’re taking the tree down.

Continue placing hooks further down the masking tape lines, keeping them even on the left and right sides.

Now that we’ve got the foundation set, it’s time to start building the tree itself. If you’re using lights, like we did, it’s easiest to place them first. Start at the top, then thread the cord down, crisscrossing back and forth between the left and right hooks.

Next, do the same with one strip of tinsel, and then the other.

Finally, add on any ornaments you have, plug in or turn on the lights, and…

voila, your tree is finished, all for a cost of just a little over 500 yen (US$3.35), depending on whether or not you had to buy any extra ornaments or lights.

Like we mentioned above, the masking tape will keep your tree up, but peels off easily when you want to put it away. And even if you do have space for a traditional on-the-floor tree, this is a fun and easy do-it-yourself project that lets you set the Christmas mood in a personalized way.

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