box grater
image: paul goyette

Who’d have thought two such unrelated things could mesh so well? That classic metal box grater you use to grate cheese, slice and dice veggies, and shave fruit peels into a nice zest can also easily revamp your outdoor holiday décor.

Box cheese graters’ sculptured ridges and classic shape blend well with traditional outdoor holiday style. Mixing them in with the customary garland and lights can keep your decorating scheme classic, while also giving your house a little something unexpected. (And it’s way easier than adding a bunch of electricity-sucking twinkle lights or inflatable Santas and snowmen to set your home apart from the pack. Take that over-competitive neighbors.)

You can easily scrounge up enough cheese graters for your decorating needs at antique malls, thrift stores and flea markets. Plus, these salvaged shredders make hardy decorations. There’s no need to sweat it if they rust; a little corrosion only adds to their old world charm.

Ready to try “grating out” your home? Get inspired with these four ideas to blend cheese graters into your holiday decorating.

1. Line your walkway

Add a little holiday cheer to the sidewalk or pathway leading to your front door using cheese graters. First, line a string of LED lights (preferably one with larger bulbs) along both sides of your walkway. Secure the string to the ground using small stakes. Next, place an antique box grater directly over each light bulb. The light bouncing through the graters’ ridges will create a soft, welcoming glow to greet guests on their walk to your door.

2. Window decoration

cheese grater
image: freshlyfound

Illuminate your windowsills with a row of votive candles topped by shiny metal cheese graters. The flickering light will create an abstract glow for passersby to watch. Place the votive candles in small jars or shot glasses for safety.

3. String them up

You can use a chain of graters strung along a rope (or even on festive ribbon) by their handles to spruce up previously blah outdoor areas. Embellish a large evergreen tree by tying several rows of the dangling graters to its boughs. Or frame a fence or gate with the strung up beauties.

4. Add them to the mix

Do you have a display of holiday garland around your front steps? Or maybe a few flowerpots or planters filled with pinecones silhouetting your front door? To add new texture to these decorations, simply arrange antique cheese graters among your displays to create a feeling of old-fashioned charm.

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