5 Ways to Get Your Clark Griswold On This Christmas

Christmas without Clark Griswold is like a night without stars. Every block needs a house so strung out with lights it can be seen from outer space and a proud dad behind it.

If you want your house to become a glowing beacon of holiday joy that the well-meaning doofus dad of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation fame would approve of, here are five handy tips to make the job go as smooth as a warm eggnog (or a nice amber ale.)

A Dad Is Only As Good As His Working Lights

The last thing you want is a crazy-eyed Clark moment where your lighting masterpiece fails to light up after all your hard work. When you pull your lights out of storage check them to make sure they’re functional. Look for broken or missing bulbs and worn or defective wiring. If you discover faulty wires, replace the string entirely as this could present a fire hazard. If bulbs are broken or missing, replace them.

Remember, Sometimes Less is More

Clark didn’t get his head around this fact, but trying to cover every surface can leave your display looking cluttered – and tackling hard-to-reach heights can result in a trip to the emergency room. Choosing a few focal points that are accessible allows you to do the best job without struggling with awkward angles that may end up looking messy.

I recommend investing in a good powerboard, like HPMs 8 Outlet RCD-Protected PlugBoss Powerboard, to keep things organised. With an octopus-like ornament dubbed the PlugBoss with eight power outlets, this rugged, extra-safe powerboard will simplify all the cords and plugs while keeping dad and the family safe from any unwanted zaps.

Choose the Right Lights

To help you achieve Griswold status you need to ensure you’ve got the right lights for the job. First and foremost, always use waterproof or water-resistant lights when decorating outside. I’d also suggest considering investing in LED Christmas lights. They are initially a bit more expensive than conventional lights, but they burn cooler, use less electricity, and last much longer, and you won’t be tearing your hair our when you see the power bill after Christmas!

Avoid the Extension Cord Blunder

We’ve all been there. The extension lead isn’t long enough to reach power, it shorts out or doesn’t survive a downpour of rain!

If you’re dying to design a runway of lights for Santa to land on the roof or drape fairy lights from the sounding trees, then you need to get yourself a long and heavy duty lead equipped to do the job as your vacuum cleaner extension lead won’t cut it. Try the HPM Garden Heavy-Duty Extension Lead: they’re tougher, safer, less likely to catch fire or crack under the midday sun and come in 15- and 25-metre length.

Alternatively you can bring the power switch to the lights and plug all your lights and timers straight into the HPM Electresafe Powercentre. With a double power point and USB ports, it’s the ultimate handyman wingman.

Get Those Creative Juices Flowing

Become the envy of the street by thinking outside of the box when it comes to decorating your home. Add Christmas lanterns to stair stoops or hang from low tree branches. Outline your front path with colourful lights. An outdoor tree lit up is also a nice touch. Turn your yard into an evergreen forest by making trees out of fairy lights and tomato cages.

This DIY Christmas Decoration Guide might also interest you. Finally, it’s meant to be FUN. Don’t take things too seriously or you’ll end up putting the family through hell, Clark W-style!

Jason Neophytou is a marketing and lifestyle expert representing Australian electrical wholesaler HPM.


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