The holidays are all about going all out. Unfortunately, this means that the most wonderful time of the year can quickly become overwhelming. If the chaos of Christmas fills you with dread, you might want to try a pared-down approach to seasonal decor this year. Minimalist Christmas decorations don't have to be boring—in fact, the calmness of simpler surroundings can make your space feel cozier than decking the halls to the nines with colorful clutter. In this high-stress season of giving, turning your home into a minimalist Christmas sanctuary might be one of the best gifts you can give to yourself.
All that fake plastic pine is fooling nobody. Instead, use as much real greenery in your decor as possible. Not only does having natural decor feel more peaceful, but nothing beats that Christmassy fresh-cut fragrance.
Run evergreen sprigs along your mantle, interlaced with simple white LED lights, and use them in wreaths and garlands. Don’t forget to scatter them around centerpieces, too.
Holiday ornaments tend to feature red, green, and everything in between, but minimal Christmas decor should have a minimal color scheme. Stick to calming neutral colors like gray, white, and black, with a bold pop of color here and there.
You can also use metallics like gold, silver, brass, or glitter as eye-catching accents.
Instead of making your entire home look like a franchise of Santa’s workshop, designate certain areas for holiday decorations. You might want to deck out your dining table, around your fireplace, and that cozy corner where you watch Christmas specials as you sip hot cocoa, but leave the rest of your home as is.
White paper snowflakes of varying shapes and sizes might be a classic winter craft for kids, but they’re also a great way to add sparkle to minimalist Christmas decor. As a bonus, you don’t have to take them down when Christmas is over. They add that cozy snow day feeling to your windows all winter. You can also suspend them on strings of different lengths from chandeliers, mantels, door frames, and window panes.
If you’re feeling extra crafty, try making a Danish paper heart, a simple and traditional Yuletide decoration in Denmark.
Not only do dried citrus wheels release a festive fragrance, but they give off a stunning stained-glass effect in the sunlight. Traditionally, citrus garlands feature regular sliced oranges in their lineup, but blood oranges, lemons, limes, or grapefruits work just as well and will make your display all the more colorful.
Use them instead of baubles on your Christmas tree, or thread them along a piece of string and hang them across your fireplace mantel or windows to catch the light. Simply slice fruits to one-quarter inch thick, arrange them on a baking tray lined with parchment, and cook in a 300°F oven for about 40 minutes, flipping halfway.
Made with just three ingredients—flour, salt, and water—salt dough ornaments make effortless DIY Christmas decorations and a fun activity for all ages. When light hits them, the salt crystals sparkle very subtly, like snow.
Simply roll the salt dough out and use cookie cutters to cut shapes. (Stars are especially pretty.) If you want, you can use rubber stamps to press in a design or create patterns, or just leave them plain. Use the end of a straw to cut holes in the tops, bake, then turn them into ornaments with a twist of twine.
The warm glow of a simple taper candle-studded log is the perfect way to bring Christmas cheer to your tablescape. When choosing the log you want to use, go for one with lots of character. The more lichen, moss, and mushrooms the better! Just make sure the other side of the log is flat and level with the table so it doesn’t roll and take the candles with it.
Drill holes at least an inch and a half deep and slightly wider than the base of the candles you want to use. Then, with a hot glue gun, insert nails into the holes, sharp side up, to keep the candles in place. Once your log centerpiece is complete, scatter evergreen sprigs and pine cones around it for the finishing touch.
With their sculptural shapes and organic size variations, pine cones are surprisingly versatile decorations. Best of all, you can forage them for free under any pine tree. Simply roll pine cones in a puddle of shimmering gold, silver, or frosty white paint with an optional dusting of glitter, let them dry, and tie twine to the stem to transform them into rustic tree or wreath ornaments.
They also look beautiful on mantels or scattered around centerpieces.
It doesn’t get much simpler than this, folks: go outside and find a sturdy tree branch in an interesting shape. Once you’ve cleaned it up a bit, secure the branch high on a wall in your main living area, then hang handmade stockings on it in neutral colors to make a festive focal point.
You can also dangle strings of salt dough ornaments or white LED Christmas lights instead. No matter what you decide, your space will look like it came straight out of a glossy home design magazine.
Your Christmas tree is the focal point of your living space, so how you display it matters. Instead of a triping-hazard tree skirt, place your tree and tree stand in an oversized basket. Not only does it look less chaotic, but it makes sweeping up any pine needles that fall around the tree a breeze.