19 Outdoor Holiday Decorations
Decorate your doors, gardens and yard for a festive first impression.
Two large urns, filled to the brim with evergreen boughs, magnolia leaves and pine cones, make for a dramatic holiday greeting at the front door of Grace Castaneda’s weekend home. A matching pine cone wreath and dangling sleigh bells finish off the festive look.
As guests stroll up the McTavish family’s front walk, they can admire an array of pretty wreaths and garlands hung on both levels of the home’s porch. Festive red plaid bows complement the traditional decor.
A unique garland of cocoa and green magnolia leaves beautifully frames this stately front door. Using the same foliage and pinecones on the wreath and in the resin planters creates a lush and cohesive effect.
A pair of classic rocking chairs with plump plaid pillows invite guests to kick back on the front porch with a mug of steaming cocoa. This particular veranda affords lovely views of a harbour on Oakville, Ont.’s Sixteen Mile Creek.
A grand entry deserves the decor to match. Here, classic black urns overflow with verdant seasonal greenery and branches, while plump garlands frame the glossy black door. A crystal chandelier just beyond makes an opulent finishing touch.
Aglow with strings of simple white Christmas lights, the celebrated designer’s charming country property looks warm and inviting set against the snowy winter backdrop.
Take a complete tour of Sarah’s farmhouse in our photo gallery.
To make these DIY lanterns, fill a large plastic container halfway with water. Place a smaller plastic container inside, weighted down with a heavy object, then fill around it with water until the large container is full. (The smaller container should be floating, so water will freeze around it.) Set it outside, or in a freezer. When the water is completely frozen, fill the smaller container with warm water until the ice melts enough to wiggle it free. Flip over the large container and pour warm water over it until it, too, melts free. Place a candle inside each frozen holder and set outdoors.
Brighten outdoor walkways by lacing grapevine balls with mini tree lights, then placing them atop planters filled with cedar, boxwood and spruce. Draw attention to doors and windows by draping them with lush garlands of B.C. cedar and dainty white lights.
This classic house already has all the elements of a welcoming entry: wide flagstone stairs, a gorgeous arched doorway and pair of glowing lanterns. But it’s the matching evergreen-filled planters and simple boxwood wreath — with their lush green tones — that make this red brick exterior really sing.
It’s not just fir trees’ time to shine. This season, why not dress your naked deciduous trees with Christmas lights? Oversized or whimsically-shaped white lights are a chic alternative to standard multicoloured strings. “Christmas, for me, lives everywhere,” shares designer and homeowner Sarah Richardson, who draped her apple tree with pretty globes.
Pack urns with fresh greens and trim exterior doors with lights to encourage open-air mingling when the weather permits — and create a wintry still life when the snow starts to fall.
With its natural palette of green, silver, rust and brown, this decorative display has a festive look that’s subtle enough to keep up all winter long. Red branches inserted into the centres of the urns add dramatic height to the arrangements.
Maxime Vandal and Richard Ouellette of Montreal design firm Les Ensembliers placed potted evergreens below a pair of handsome, lantern-style sconces for a symmetrical, visually appealing effect. A classic berry wreath stands out against the black front door for pop of holiday colour.
Use simple and nostalgic greenery to emphasize your home’s standout architectural elements. Here, a regal lion door knocker is framed by a wreath of variegated holly, while a fir wreath draws the eye to the entryway’s pretty peaked roof. The planters at the base of the supportive beams feature juicy red ilex berries, creating a colourful and festive focal point.
Giant pots of pine trimmings, decorated with reflective silver balls and twinkling white lights, set a celebratory tone before guests even set foot inside one of Sarah Richardson‘s holiday parties. Wreaths rendered in a unique square shape are contemporary takes on the seasonal standbys.
A few hits of subtle, seasonal boxwood complement this home’s soft grey-painted brick and elegant hardware. It comes together for a festive, yet totally sophisticated look.
Hanging two wreaths, instead of one, gives this tiny shed a fairy-tale feel. Ornaments strung along the charming white fence up the festive ante, and since these ones are fashioned from faux rosehip and evergreen, they’ll hold up beautifully all season.
To create a similar effect in your front or back yard this season, purchase artificial wire or sisal balls from a garden centre (these conceal light cords better than wide-weave twig or wicker balls). Create an opening in each ball by gently pulling the wire or sisal apart, and carefully pack each globe with strings of white Christmas lights. Connect the lights to an extension cord and run the cord discreetly to an outlet.
For a neutral and natural look, wrap burlap bags around the bases of boxwood plants and wrap simple evergreen garlands around columns. A magnolia leaf wreath makes a subtley elegant finishing touch.