The Top 12 Natural Christmas Decoration Ideas

Scandinavian-style Christmas decor in the living room - a spruce wreath on the wall, a vase with cranberry branches on a white chest of drawers
© Kiian Oksana/Shutterstock.com

Written by Baylee Bunce

Updated: December 11, 2023

Share on:

Advertisement


Finding creative ways to decorate during the holiday season does not require a lot of planning or expertise. You can easily transform your home with a few supplies if you enjoy natural Christmas decorations. While you can always opt for a real Christmas tree, there are many other natural ways to decorate. Depending on where you live, many natural decorations can be foraged from outdoors or bought for cheap at a local store. Natural Christmas decorations offer a little rustic charm to your holiday season and make great conversation starters at your seasonal gatherings. Check out the top Christmas decorations made with natural supplies for a more sustainable holiday.

Safety First With Natural Christmas Decorations

Decorating naturally involves the use of greenery and different plants. Remember that your safety, the safety of your family, and the safety of your pets are very important during the holiday season.

Dried evergreen boughs notoriously catch fire with ease. When it comes to decorating safely with fresh greenery, remember these tips:

  • Use the freshest possible evergreens.
  • Avoid evergreen boughs that seem brown at the tips or shed excessively.
  • Soak evergreens overnight to refresh before bringing them into your home.
  • Carefully place green decorations away from any heat source.
  • Continue monitoring greenery for dryness during the holidays.

The holidays can also be a dangerous time for pets. Many popular holiday plants, like poinsettias, can cause issues for cats and dogs. If you want to add natural pops of color with berries, keep these items safely out of reach of pets and young children.

1. Craft Ornaments or Wreaths With Grapevines and Twigs

Woman Making A Christmas Grapevine Wreath. Christmas, New Year holiday preparation background

Vineyards remove grapevines every year to encourage better production, which makes it easy to find an abundance of grapevines for crafting.

©SStajic/iStock via Getty Images

Grapevines function as a popular weaving material for all types of crafts. If you have fresh grapevines, let them dry out a little bit before twisting them into cone trees, wreaths, and more. You can also save dried grapevines for many months. To get them ready and pliable for crafting, soak the grapevines for a little bit.

Anybody can get started turning grapevines and twigs into holiday d├ęcor. Start with simple designs and shapes, like circular wreaths. Other grapevine holiday decoration ideas include orbs, trees, and baskets to hold holiday items like pinecones and berries.

2. Design A Natural Wreath or Centerpiece

top view of florist hands making Christmas wreath on wooden tabletop

Evergreen cuttings, including juniper, Douglas fir, and white pine, make the best homemade Christmas wreaths.

©LightField Studios/Shutterstock.com

Create your own fresh wreath with natural supplies to suit your holiday style. Premade wreaths can either be too showy or too plain. With the addition of berries, pinecones, dried flowers, seed pods, or other accessories, you can make a holiday wreath into something special. Consider creating a more original wreath with alternatives to traditional evergreens. Bayberry, with its semi-evergreen foilage and blue-gray fruit, is a fun switch from classic red berry arrangements.

3. Mold Handmade Ornaments Out of Clay

Creating hand made christmas ornaments and tags with modeling clay

Ornaments made out of clay offer a more natural alternative to plastic, storebought ornaments.

©netrun78/iStock via Getty Images

Pull out your favorite cookie cutters and get ready to bake! However, for this natural Christmas decoration, you will not be making or using anything edible. Pick a clay that is easily molded and bakes up hard in the oven. Cut out holiday-themed shapes, like bells, angels, and stars. You can decorate these handmade ornaments with acrylic paint or puff paint, but consider using natural dyes to provide some color.

4. Decorate With Dried Fruit

Close-up of handmade garland out of dried orange slices, pinecones on a glass door shot in counter daylight

Dried citrus adds a little splash of bright color to your natural Christmas decorations without harsh dyes.

©Olena Voloshyna/Shutterstock.com

Drying fruit is a simple process that requires no great skill. It also does not require a large amount of time to accomplish, considering how thin you slice the fruit. Try drying oranges, lemons, grapefruit, and more by slicing the whole fruit less than one centimeter thick. Every slice should be adequately dried out after about four hours in an oven on low heat. Once finished, dried fruit can be hung on strings or added to festive garlands.

5. Add Bunches of Cinnamon Sticks

Hot mulled apple cider with with cinnamon sticks, cloves and anise on wooden background

Cinnamon sticks not only make great natural Christmas decorations. They can also add flavor to a holiday favorite – mulled wine!

©nblx/Shutterstock.com

The lovely scent of cinnamon makes the perfect reason to use cinnamon sticks for holiday decoration and crafting. When it comes to handmade ornaments, there are so many ways to incorporate cinnamon sticks. Whether you want to create simple star ornaments or more complex orbs, all you need is a bunch of cinnamon sticks and some hot glue.

6. Make Unique Candle Centerpieces

Handmade decorative candles in christmas style in home goods shop

To safely create candle centerpieces with real greenery, make sure to monitor the natural elements for dryness.

©JackF/iStock via Getty Images

Turning natural items into beautiful decorations does not need to be intimidating. For anyone who enjoys festive candles, consider the benefits of making your own candle centerpiece arrangement. Craft homemade candles using soy wax or beeswax and add elements that fit with your Christmas theme. Add something special to you, like a specific berry, dried flowers, or pinecones.

If you plan on lighting the candles in your natural Christmas centerpiece, make sure to keep them away from any dry elements to avoid fire.

7. Create a Rustic Display With Foraged Branches

Scandinavian-style Christmas decor in the living room - a spruce wreath on the wall, a vase with cranberry branches on a white chest of drawers

Roughly cut cranberry or holly branches add a pop of color to a table display.

©Kiian Oksana/Shutterstock.com

Perhaps the easiest natural Christmas decoration idea on this list is styling foraged branches. Whether you live in an area with large trees or need to take some from a family member or friend, foraged branches are cheap and fun. Display them simply inside in a vase with fresh greenery or outside in a decorative box with lights.

8. Give Your Pinecones a Makeover

Christmas tree decorated with golden pine cone. Creative winter decorations.

You can also try adding glitter or paint to acorns, pecans, and sweet gum balls.

©Kseniia Kapris/iStock via Getty Images

Gold paint or glitter can give simple pinecones a more dressed-up holiday look. If you have mature pine trees in your yard, you can find endless pinecones for Christmas decorations. Pinecones can provide a little texture to centerpieces or table settings at your holiday dinner table. Or you can tie them onto strings for another natural ornament to hang from your tree. A little bit of glitter or white paint can transform a boring pinecone.

9. Design an Old-Fashioned Popcorn Garland

Christmas garland of red cranberries and popcorn kernels

Popcorn garland is a less messy alternative to tinsel garland and can be a fun holiday activity.

©Lynne Mitchell/iStock via Getty Images

The tradition of making popcorn garland originated with the European colonists in North America. They were able to use plentiful popped corn kernels to create inexpensive Christmas tree decorations. Some people dyed them different colors and even added fruit and nuts alongside the popcorn.

String together your own popcorn garland with a large needle on a sturdy string. Try adding cranberries for a burst of bright color for your tree. Popcorn garland can help make you feel nostalgic and sentimental.

10. Repurpose An Old Wooden Crate

Old wooden room with christmas decorations

Save up wooden crates from flea markets and elsewhere throughout the year.

©archideaphoto/iStock via Getty Images

You can decorate for Christmas without buying a lot if you reclaim old items. Turning old everyday items into Christmas decor can be a great project for the entire family and requires only a few store-bought supplies. Grab some wooden crates that have seen better days; the more battered, the better. Paint over them to get rid of any logos or stains. You can even add Christmas designs or words. Whether you fill them with evergreens or stack them up for a holiday tableau, it will not take much time at all.

11. Dress Up Your Norfolk Pine

Nofrolk Island Pine Tree in Terra-Cotta Pot

A Norfolk Island pine tree provides you with a living Christmas decoration and a beautiful houseplant for the rest of the year.

©Panooh/Shutterstock.com

On its own, a Norfolk Island pine tree looks great throughout the year but will really shine during Christmastime. If you have little space for a full-sized Christmas tree in your home or apartment, you can add ornaments, lights, and garlands to a Norfolk pine instead.

12. Use Amaryllis Blooms in Vases and Tablescapes

Beautiful red amaryllis flowers on table in room

Amaryllis blooms during Christmastime in December, making it a good option for winter décor.

©New Africa/Shutterstock.com

Festive amaryllis flower blooms will add color to your evergreen decorations. Try placing them in a vase with twinkling lights or dry the flowers to use in centerpiece arrangements or place settings. The rich symbolism of the amaryllis, mainly its enduring strength and willpower, is a nice reminder as the year comes to a close and people look to new beginnings after Christmastime.


Share this post on:
About the Author

Baylee Bunce is a writer at A-Z Animals, primarily covering cats, gardening, travel, and geography. Baylee has been writing and researching about animals for 3 years and holds a Bachelor's Degree in Anthropology from Purdue University, which she earned in 2018. A resident of Indiana, Baylee enjoys working in her backyard garden and spending time with her cats, Stormi and Lady.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.