10 Christmas garland ideas – adorn everything from staircases to mantels and more

A highly adaptable decoration that can be used all over the home, a Christmas garland can beautifully enrich your space with fabulous festive foliage

Christmas garland ideas. Christmas garland on dining table. Christmas table draped over front door. Christmas garland wrapped around staircase
(Image credit: Lulu and Georgia | Nicole Yee Interiors/SEN Creative | Jon Day Photography / Designers Guild / Trenoweth House)

If you thought Christmas garlands were just for draping over your staircase to make your entryway look invitingly festive, then think again, garlands can add inviting festive decoration all over your home – both inside and out.

Traditionally created from festive foliage and flowers, garlands can help to add a beautiful natural accent to your Christmas decor ideas, and often work in unison with Christmas wreaths to create a beautiful natural display.

From classic garlands crafted from Christmas foliage, to more modern faux designs, a Christmas garland will always be a wonderfully versatile decoration to use over the festive season.

Bring beautiful festive decoration to your home with our favorite Christmas garland ideas

Fresh Christmas foliage is always our first choice for Christmas garland ideas because of the natural scent and texture they will bring to your home's interior, however, if you don't fancy making a Christmas garland yourself, faux will do just as well.

'There are so many fantastic faux garlands – Etsy always have a great selection,' says Lucy Searle, content director, Homes & Gardens. 'I always like to enhance mine with a few fresh blooms, which can be easily replaced as they die off.'

Lucy Searle
Lucy Searle

Lucy Searle has written about interiors, property and gardens for over 30 years, starting within the interiors departments of women's magazines before switching to interiors-only titles in the mid-1990s. In 2018, Lucy took on the role of Global Editor in Chief for Realhomes.com, taking the site from a small magazine add-on to a global success. She was asked to repeat that success at Homes & Gardens, where she also took on the editorship of the magazine. Lucy is now Content Director across Homes & Gardens, Woman & Home, Real Homes and Ideal Home. Lucy is a serial renovator and also owns rental properties in the UK and Europe, so brings first-hand knowledge to the subjects she oversees.

1. Add a festive touch to your front door

Christmas door decor with wreath and garland around the door frame, antique rug, baskets and a pot full of poinsettia

(Image credit: Nicole Yee Interiors/SEN Creative)

If you love outdoor Christmas decorations or are searching for Christmas door decor ideas specifically, why not consider a garland draped over the door? It can create the perfect festive welcome over the holiday season.

Here, interior designer Nicole Yee from Nicole Yee Interiors has draped a rustic green garland over her front door, working wonderfully with the Christmas wreath and potted poinsettia to create an eye-catching festive display for Christmas porch decor.

2. Decorate your stairs

Wooden traditional staircase decorated with a foliage garland


(Image credit: Jon Day Photography | Designers Guild | Trenoweth House)

Of course, Christmas stair decor ideas will probably spring to mind first when you consider where to drape your garland – and they are perfect for making your home feel festive and welcoming.

Simply wrap a garland – or multiple garlands depending on the size of your staircase, around your handrail or your baluster, perfect for Christmas hallway ideas

In this Cornwall home, a former vicarage belonging to Amanda Back, head of communications at Designers Guild, the original oak staircase is decorated with pine and clove studded dried oranges; establishing a traditional look that feels perfectly in-keeping with the style of the space.

3. Add a garland to your Christmas table

Decorated christmas table with garland and festive decorations

(Image credit: Lulu and Georgia)

A garland can add beautiful greenery and texture to your Christmas table – and it is as simple as laying the garland in the center of your table space, as shown with the Lulu and Georgia Handmade Olive Branch Garland above.

'Create your own garland with foraged stems of ivy and fir tree. Place along the table center and dot a few pine cone decorations in-between the pieces. Do the same on your mantel so it matches. To finish the look, use tea lights and dinner candles to create a lovely festive glow,' says Jennifer Ebert, Homes & Gardens' digital editor.

For further inspiration, we explore a collection of Christmas table garland ideas in our dedicated feature.

Jennifer Ebert
Jennifer Ebert

Jen is the Editor (Digital) of Homes & Gardens. Before starting this position, she had completed various interior design courses at KLC Design School, as well as working across Ideal Home, LivingEtc, 25 Beautiful Homes and Country Homes & Interiors as an interiors writer.

4. Decorate your mantelpiece

Thanksgiving mantel decor. Decorated fireplace in cozy living room.

(Image credit: © Unique Homestays www.uniquehomestays.com | House of Hackney)

One of the most popular places in the home to decorate with a garland is on a Christmas mantel. As a fireplace is often the most central and main focal point in a room, uplifting this space with pretty mantel decor will only make this feature more inviting and stylish for the season.

5. Uplift furniture

Close up of gold drinks trolley dressed with foliage, candles, lamps and drinksware

(Image credit: Future | SARAH KAYE REPRESENTATION LTD | Photography by Polly Wreford, styling by Sally Denning)

The beauty of a Christmas garland is that it can be hung or placed pretty much anywhere. From drinks trolleys to sideboards and shelving, they are ideal for uplifting everyday pieces of furniture with a joyful festive accent.

'Creating a Christmas garland is very simple and looks impressive whether it be dressing an antique mirror or a sideboard. When creating a garland, which will be out of water, choosing hardy ingredients is key – evergreen foliage is a must and there are a few seasonal flowers, like wax flower, that can add delicacy and color,' advises Philippa Craddock, founder and creative director of the Philippa Craddock Flower School.

Philippa Craddock
Philippa Craddock

Philippa Craddock is a renowned designer who built her flower business from her kitchen table to a seven-figure global brand within a few short years. Philippa has developed innovative and successful collaborations with Selfridges & Co., MATCHESFASHION.com, US and British Vogue, and London design museum the V&A. She has also worked closely with fashion houses and lifestyle brands including Hermès, Dior, Fortnum & Mason, Chanel, SpaceNK and Alexander McQueen.

6. Choose a garland with twinkling lights

Christmas garland on mantelpiece

(Image credit: Pottery Barn)

Unite festive foliage with your indoor Christmas light ideas and opt for a garland that features cozy, twinkling lights – ideal for outdoor Christmas light ideas, too.

'Christmas garlands are a great way to make a home feel extra special for the holidays. As well as mantels and stair rails they look great on window sills, closets and dressers. Mix in some fresh greenery and some string lights for a wonderfully cozy feel,' says Mark Winstanley, chief creative officer at The White Company

We love this Eucalyptus and Berry Christmas garland from Pottery Barn, with the string lights adding a more modern touch to the traditional design.

Mark Winstanley
Mark Winstanley

Mark Winstanley has worked at The White Company for 17 years, and is the chief creative officer behind their timeless collections of homeware, clothing and more.

7. Opt for enduring faux foliage

Christmas garland on window

(Image credit: Anthropologie)

The beauty of a faux Christmas garland, such as this Faux Pine Berry Garland from Anthropologie is that they are easy to handle and display and can be re-used every year for festive decorating.

'A garland really is a staple when it comes to holiday decorating, and the best thing about a faux one is that you can use it year after year. I think they look lovely wrapped around staircase banisters or draped over a mantelpiece, but there are also lots more creative ways you can use them around the house too,' says OKA’s co-founder, Sue Jones.

8. Decorate windows and door frames

Doorway decorated with garland, christmas tree in background

(Image credit: Future / Sarah Kaye Representation Ltd.)

Just like you would adorn your front door with a Christmas garland, be sure to style you internal doors and windows, too.

This twinkling garland creates the perfect entrance into this cozy Christmas living room; beautifully framing the Christmas tree.

9. Opt for a more modern garland

Sideboard decorated with christmas ornaments and christmas cards on display above

(Image credit: Pottery Barn)

Traditionally, Christmas garlands are crafted from real foliage and flowers, but as years have gone by, there are so many different wonderful designs to choose from – and they're not all faux foliage either. 

'A garland is the perfect addition to a blank wall in the living room, for example, creating a beautiful festive canopy from which you can layer lots of jewel-toned decorations. I'd use baubles of different sizes and add some fairy lights for a real modern statement,' says Sue Jones from OKA.

This Light Up Rustic Leaf Garland from Pottery Barn works as a beautiful cardholder and stylish garland all in one, with the elegant metal design perfect for a more minimalist look.

10. Coordinate your garland with your existing decor

Green foliage garland with red orange Christmas decorations in an entrance hall with porch, double doors and front door.

(Image credit: Future / Sarah Kaye Representation Ltd.)

For a coordinated look that is in-keeping with your existing decor and personal style, choose a garland that shares the same color palette as your room color ideas.

Here, the brown and orange garland, made from tinsel and finished with ball ornaments, perfectly complements the brown room ideas and the orange chairs and rug.

Shop Christmas garlands


What do you put in a Christmas garland?

You can put anything in a Christmas garland that can be easily attached, whether that's other fresh, scented foliage, flowers, even mistletoe, or Christmas tree decor ideas, such as baubles, string lights and ribbons. Go glitzy, keep it natural or give it a kiddie-centric theme  – it's difficult to go wrong. After all, Christmas really is about going over the top.

How can I make cheap garland look expensive?

Cheap garlands – we like Amazon's Choice because it is faux eucalyptus and not too Christmassy, so can be repurposed throughout the year – can be easily made to look expensive if you twine some real seasonal foliage offcuts along them length of them. Those that aren't going to be brushed against regularly look fabulous decorated with bare twigs sprayed in metallics or festive colors or with dried flowers. Or you can use real flowers for scent or faux flowers for color, too. We love adding pretty ribbons to Christmas garlands, too, and they can be used to attach other decor to the garlands. Wired Christmas ribbon, like this from Amazon, holds its shape best.

If you're thinking of embracing DIY Christmas decor this year and are wanting to make your own garland, why not learn how to make a dried orange garland instead of using traditional flowers and foliage? Dried orange slice decorations will always make for a homey festive decoration.

Sophie Warren-Smith
Contributing Editor

Sophie has been an interior stylist and journalist for over 20 years and has worked for many of the main interior magazines during that time, both in-house and as a freelancer. On the side, as well as being the News Editor for indie magazine, 91, she trained to be a florist in 2019 and launched The Prettiest Posy where she curates beautiful flowers for modern weddings and events. For H&G, she writes features about interior design – and is known for having an eye for a beautiful room.

With contributions from