Decorating Outside for Christmas: 5 Easy Ideas!

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These 5 easy and inexpensive ideas for decorating outside for Christmas include using what you already have with free natural elements!

how to decorate your porch for Christmas

We built our front deck about five years ago. (You can read all about it here.) Before we added the deck we just had a tiny stoop.

It wasn’t pretty and decorating outside for Christmas was not a thing.

Once we added the deck I had great big dreams about how I wanted this space to look. (Don’t we all?!! lol) Too much Pinterest gazing and not enough reality.

front porch decorated for Christmas with red and blue

In general (at least when all the kids were home), my husband takes care of the outside projects and I do all the cleaning and decorating inside.

Tim loves to decorate outside with all.the.lights he can find. When we used to host a Christmas party I would tell people to look for the landing strip!

Since our kids are all grown Tim doesn’t have any help with the outside decorations. He’s simplified things and it doesn’t take days to set everything up.

Decorating outside for Christmas with wreaths and garland

I worked hard this year to simplify my decorating inside as well. (You can see my rustic farmhouse Christmas tour here.)

This year I was determined to decorate my front deck. Remember those big dreams? Yeah, not as easy to implement!

Tim blows the leaves out of the gutters and they land in every crack and crevice of this space. Then the wind blows and it’s just a big mess.

decorating outside with blue and red

Cleaning and making the deck pretty are WAY harder than I ever imagined! But for this Christmas I wanted a pretty space to welcome guests and family.

Here are my best tips for creating a beautiful welcome space outside your home.

Decorating Outside for Christmas

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Black and white buffalo check rug
Red and black buffalo check doormat
Pillow Covers

1. Flip your cushions and pillows.

This may sound silly, but it’s totally worth it! I haven’t flipped our cushions since we bought them, so instead of cleaning them I flipped them over!

Look who’s winning here? This girl!

A dining room table

I love the pillow covers but in all honesty, they’re not waterproof so they’re just for staging!

A close up of a basket

The ones on the love seat bench are from a yard sale and they’ll stay out all year.

outside love seat decorated for Christmas

2. Use inexpensive ornaments for decoration.

This $15 changing table turned DIY garden cart is decorated simply with yard sale lanterns and inexpensive greenery and mini trees.

DIY garden cart decorated for Christmas

A couple of years ago I shared several different ways to use inexpensive ornaments around your home. Our deck is the perfect example of this strategy.

Decorating Tips and Hacks
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DIY garden cart decorated with greenery and lanterns

This rustic lantern was $1 at a yard sale and is perfect filled with old ornaments. 


3. Buy a new door mat.

This year I layered two mats together, a black and white buffalo check and a red and black buffalo check. I can’t tell you how happy it makes me (and I’ll continue to use it in January.)

double buffalo check rugs at Christmas

4. Use natural elements.

I didn’t feel like moving these empty planters off the deck so I filled them with leaves, pine cones and ornaments. 

A vase of flowers sitting on top of a wooden table

This was our first year without a real tree in 30 years so I missed getting extra greenery from the Christmas tree lot. But I made do with what I could find around my own house!

5. Decorate the steps.

The angle of our center steps makes it difficult to walk down, and I purposefully decorate those to keep people from falling. 

A bench in front of a store

I originally decorated this section a few years ago for Christmas (read all about them here.)

The ceramic luminaries are probably 25 years old. Since I break at least one a year I bought the red LED ones to fill out the tree shape. 

A wooden bench in front of a building

My most clever use of natural elements? These planters using newspaper as filler, greenery and berries from our bushes with pinecones and ornaments to complete them.

A table topped with different types of food, with Idea and Red

Believe it or not, these have survived several heavy rains recently. 

Right beside our front door is a built-in planter that my hubby decorates each year. These reindeer are decades old, and we built the rustic Christmas countdown a few years ago.

built-in planter decorated for Christmas with wooden reindeers

This is my absolute favorite picture! So typical of my dog, always wanting to be near me!

A store inside of a building

This is the first year I’ve ever decorated right beside the front door, and I wanted to find a place for this fence board O Holy Night sign.

FYI, I made this sign with my Cricut but the vinyl letters weren’t for outdoors and fell off. This year I simply hand wrote the lettering and stars with Sharpies!

The “Home for the Holidays” was from the dollar store and everything else just decorations I already had.

Ha! There he is again, on the couch, watching the world go by!

Idea and Red

This scrap wood Christmas tree is one of my favorite front door decorations. With these adorable rugs, I believe guests and family feel welcomed when they come to our home.

front porch decorated with repurposed Christmas tree

Do you decorate the outdoors of your home? 

Decorating Tips and Hacks
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  1. We did different things a year. I saw a train on Pinterest and wanted one so he got busy making one. So glad you did what made you happy and encouraged others. With these adorable rugs, I believe guests and family feel welcomed when they come to our home. The final thing we made was wooden stockings for each member of our family.

  2. You have given me so many ideas for my apartment back porch! With all of your suggestions I can win the annual “Porch Christmas Contest”

  3. How lovely! Wish we could sit out and enjoyed Christmas outdoors; we just got our first snowfall last night :).

  4. Awwwwwww your fur baby says it all Marty. Your porch is warm and inviting and the perfect spot for everyone to catch up and enjoy the real things in life. I love your countdown tree BTW. That’s so cool.

  5. Hi Marty, we decorate outside every year. My husband loves doing it. He said if he can make one child happy then it makes him happy. We did different things things year. I saw a train on Pinterest and wanted one so he got busy making one. Although it caused a mishap with the table saw and the sides of 2 fingers, he didn’t lose any thankfully, the train turned out the way I wanted it. I also have a few old planters so I bought fake flowers and put them in those. The final thing we made was wooden stockings for each member of our family. Our yard turned out the way we wanted it.