The holidays are fast approaching, and it’s time to start thinking about how to decorate for that most food-centric of holidays: Thanksgiving! While Christmas trees and ornaments might be the first things that come to mind when it comes to holiday decor, there are lots of ways to incorporate Thanksgiving tree ornaments and decor into your home to get ready for Turkey Day.
Embrace the Colors of the Season
When it comes to Thanksgiving decor, think fall. Rich autumnal hues like burnt orange, reddish browns, muted golds, and warm yellows capture the colors of the changing leaves and harvest season. Look for tree ornaments in these natural tones to evoke the spirit of the holiday. Thanksgiving tree ornaments shaped like autumn leaves, acorns, mini pumpkins, and turkeys are perfect for embellishing a Thanksgiving tree.
Don’t be afraid to also incorporate classic Thanksgiving decor elements like pilgrims, Native Americans, cornucopias, and turkeys. Just focus on rich fall versions of these motifs rendered in felt, wood, metal or baked clay for an elegant, sophisticated look. Stay away from anything too cartoonish or kitschy if you want your decor to feel refined.
Add Touches of Harvest Charm
Bring the bounty of the harvest season inside with natural elements and ornaments inspired by fall produce and vegetation. Forage for dried corn cobs, mini gourds, pinecones and fallen leaves to tuck around your Thanksgiving ornaments on the tree. Wrap cinnamon sticks or dried allium bulbs with ribbon to hang as woody, earthy ornaments.
Ornaments shaped like autumn fruits and veggies like pomegranates, acorns, apples, mini pumpkins, and squash are another way to pay homage to harvest season. Search thrift and craft stores for wooden, felt or metal versions you can hang on your holiday tree.
Give Thanks with DIY Ornaments
Part of the fun of Thanksgiving is finding ways to get the whole family involved. Let your creativity shine by making your own homemade Thanksgiving tree ornaments to trim the tree. Simple ideas like tracing and cutting out handprints from felt or craft foam, then decorating them with written notes of gratitude, yarn, buttons, glitter and more allow you to reflect on what you’re thankful for this season.
Other DIY ornament ideas include:
- Painting and decorating plain wood disc ornaments with acrylic craft paints and markers
- Rolling air-dry clay into balls or seasonal shapes, baking to harden, then painting
- Cutting out printed Thanksgiving words, phrases or images to Mod Podge onto wood discs
- Decorating dollar-store clear plastic ornaments with ribbons, fabric, burlap and other embellishments
The options for DIY Thanksgiving tree ornaments are endless – let your creativity run wild! Handmade decor adds that extra personal touch to holiday trimming.
Light Up with Twinkling Lights
You can never go wrong decorating your Thanksgiving tree with strings of warm white twinkle lights. The soft white glow evokes flickering candles and cozy evenings gathered with loved ones.
For some extra sparkle, look for translucent glass ball ornaments and finials that will pick up and reflect the twinkling light. Or top your tree with a glittering turkey, pilgrim or autumn leaf tree-topper ornament illuminated from within.
If you have a fireplace mantle or tablespace to decorate, consider lining it with battery-operated twinkle lights interspersed with mini gourds, pinecones, decorative fall leaves and other Thanksgiving trimmings. The warm glow will make your space feel magical.
Infuse Nature with Floral Touches
While less common than Christmas trees, many seasonal decorators choose to adorn a small potted tree or live tree in a planter with Thanksgiving ornaments. This allows you to bring the outdoors in and decorate it with natural elements.
Surround your mini tree with a ring of moss or wood chips. Use floral wire or jute to attach dried flowers, grasses, curly willow branches, eucalyptus sprigs, bare branches, and other foraged materials. Then hang painted pinecones, acorn ornaments, twinkle lights and other embellishments throughout for texture.
You can achieve a similar look by gathering an eclectic vase or urn full of autumn branches, dried flowers, grasses and leaves, then interspersing your Thanksgiving tree ornaments throughout the arrangement. Let this natural decor shine as a focal point on your table or living space.
Create Divine Centerpieces
Your ornament collection can pull double duty by using select pieces to embellish your Thanksgiving table as well. Create a dazzling centerpiece by gathering 3-5 candlestick holders or small glass vases of varying heights. Arrange them close together in the middle of your table and fill with mums, stalks of wheat and other seasonal florals.
Then artfully tuck in painted pinecone ornaments, mini gourds, small pumpkins and other embellishments. Pop in a few battery-operated candles or tea lights to create a warm glow. Scatter some turkey, pilgrim and woodland creature figurines around the base for an inviting harvest scene.
For kid-friendly tables, set a platter upside down and use it as a pedestal to display your centerpiece. Coil greens around the base and top with mini pumpkins, gourds, fruits, nuts and a few shiny ornament accents. Let the little ones help decorate the platter base with their homemade turkey handprint ornaments – they’ll love seeing their crafts become part of the table display.
Tree Toppers that Celebrate
Topping off your Thanksgiving tree is the crowning final touch. While a traditional angel or star would look lovely, consider a tree topper that ties in the Turkey Day theme.
Look for toppers in the shape of autumn leaves, pumpkins, pilgrims, Native Americans, turkeys or cornucopias. For a more unique approach, make your own papier mache ornament shaped like a turkey, fall leaf or cornucopia. Paint or decoupage it with scrapbook paper or fabric. Add decorative details like buttons, ribbon, raffia and jute. Finish by placing a battery tealight inside so your creation can glow.
Or forego a traditional tree topper all together. Instead, take a large styrofoam disc form and insert dried flowers, grasses, leaves and sticks all around to resemble a wreath. Then attach ribbons so you can hang it right on top of your tree. Add in tiny pumpkins, gourds, nuts and other embellishments for seasonal texture. The end result will look beautifully organic and full of foraged autumn charm.
However you choose to top off your Thanksgiving tree, let it become a decorative highlight that caps off your Thanksgiving tree ornaments decor.
Give Table Settings a Touch of Whimsy
Thanksgiving table settings give you yet another opportunity to interject festive flair. Purchase inexpensive plain maple leaf and acorn shaped scissors at a craft store. Hot glue a magnet to the back so they can adorn your flatware as whimsical placeholder identifiers.
Write each guest’s name on a small paper banner and attach it to a painted clothespin ornament clipped around the stemware. Use twine to attach autumn-hued tassels made from yarn or crepe paper to the back of chairs.
Tie printed autumn leaf and turkey napkin rings around rolled silverware. Arrange mini gourds, nuts, pinecones and other natural embellishments around your tablescape. Infuse everyday dining elements with ornament inspired charm to really set a seasonal scene.
Accent Your Entryway
Set the Thanksgiving mood right from your front door. Adorn your entryway with a mini tree decorated with turkey, pilgrim and autumn ornament accents. Or hang a vibrant fall wreath ornately decorated with ribbons, mini gourds, dried flowers, leaves and ornament embellishments.
Affix battery operated twinkle lights along your doorway, railing and bushes outside to cast a warm, welcoming glow. Place a couple of hay bales on your porch or front steps and tuck in some seasonal ornaments like mini pumpkins and turkeys.
Stick cute printed flags on bamboo sticks and place them in your planters that read, “Thankful and Blessed” or “Give Thanks.” Show off your ornament artistry outdoors to get guests excited as soon as they arrive.
Ready Your Mantle
The fireplace mantle is prime real estate for showing off your best Thanksgiving ornament displays. Start with the basics like garlands, wreaths and twinkle lights draped along the length of your mantle. Incorporate sunflowers, berries, dried grasses and falling leaves into your greenery for gorgeous autumn hues.
Then artfully arrange your painted pinecones, acorns, mini gourds and handmade ornaments in front of and in between the garlands. If you have candlesticks or hurricane lamps, place them at either end of the mantle and add flickering battery-operated candles or fairy lights inside. Display some of your favorite turkey, pilgrim or woodland creature figurines across the mantle top as well.
The goal is create a bountiful landscape that feels like a celebrations of the natural beauty and imagery of the Thanksgiving season. Your ornament collection will be the perfect accent.
Embellish Fall Wreaths
Wreaths are another way to tastefully display Thanksgiving sent. Start with a classic grapevine wreath form. Adorn it with colorful fall foliage like red leaves, orange mums, muted gold flowers, wispy grasses and evergreen stems and sprigs. Then embellish with pinecones, acorns, tiny gourds and berry branches.
Tuck in small paper turkey die cuts or handmade pumpkin or leaf ornaments. Wrap fall-colored ribbon around the wreath form in big loopy bows. Display your creation on your front door or use it as a centerpiece by laying it on a round mirror or platter atop your Thanksgiving table.
You can find affordable plain grapevine wreaths at most craft stores if you want to DIY your own embellished creation. Or buy one pre-decorated if you’re short on time. Either way, a wreath is a great way to proudly display some of your shiny new ornament creations.
Give Staircases a Festive Feel
Stair railings and banisters offer plenty of place to hang ornament-adorned garlands and decorate for Thanksgiving. Wrap the railing with twinkle lights first as a base. Then intersperse silk maple leaf garlands, mini gourd and berry strands, and laurel branches along the railing as well. Hang painted pinecone ornaments from the garlands with ribbon for pops of color.
Create a berry-studded fall floral swag to hang in the center of the staircase. Or hang a vibrant ornament-decorated wreath in the middle as a focal point. Place faux pumpkins, gourds, berries and leaves along the stair steps to complete the look. The end result will feel abundant, fall-focused and merry.
Oversized Décor Adds Drama
Sometimes choosing one or two oversized statement pieces can make all the difference in your holiday decor. Display a giant trellis filled with faux sunflowers, mums, grasses and leaves on your front porch or along your wall. Or pick a colossal pumpkin, acorn or pinecone shape to lean in the corner of a space.
Place an oversized cornucopia basket on your floor or table and overflow it with gourds, nuts, dried leaves and your ornate turkey and pilgrim ornaments for an imposing harvest-inspired display.
Adding just one or two larger-than-life pieces alongside your typical Thanksgiving tree ornaments and trimmings helps ground the decor and takes it up a notch. It shows you’re not afraid to go bold and make Thanksgiving a glamorous affair.
Embrace Unexpected Touches
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to ornament shapes and materials. You can find fantastic ornaments these days that veer from the expected. Why not try:
- Ornaments in modern shapes like geometric diamonds, circles and angles
- Feathered ornaments that mimic exotic plumage
- Beaded balls covered in shimmering iridescent pieces
- Abstract wood shapes with bark still attached
- Victorian-style etched glass baubles
- Antique mercury glass ornaments with silvered finishes
- Metallic ornaments in rose gold, copper and brushed gold
Sometimes a few ornaments in bolder shapes, abstract designs or unexpected materials can complement your more traditional autumn-hued pieces nicely. Embrace a blend of old and new – it will keep your decor feeling fresh and festive!
Give Thanks through Meaningful Messages
Beyond the typical turkey, leaf and pumpkin shaped ornaments, you can find many options these days that are embellished with words, blessings and inspirational quotes. Look for sentiments like:
- Give Thanks
- Thankful and Grateful
- Gather Together
- Home is Where the Heart Is
- Count Your Blessings
Ornaments adorned with meaningful messages remind us what the Thanksgiving season is really all about – appreciating life’s simple gifts. They inspire us to reflect on what we value most. Display these special ornaments prominently on your tree, mantle or table to keep the right holiday perspective.
Ornament-Inspired Outdoor Décor
Your Thanksgiving ornaments don’t have to be confined just to indoor trees and displays. Take their motifs and shapes outside to embellish your exterior landscape for fabulous curb appeal.
Place boldly painted turkey ornaments on stakes throughout garden beds and planters. Use mini gourds to line your walkways. Hang wood disc ornaments from trees and fill them with berries, dried flowers, or succulents.
Stick handmade leaf and acorn ornaments in your garden as seasonal accents. Nestle painted pumpkins into your outdoor pillows and patio pots. Wherever you have plants and greenery outside, you have places to showcase your ornament artistry al fresco.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What are some ideas for DIY Thanksgiving ornaments?
Some fun DIY ornament ideas include making handprint turkeys or leaves out of craft foam or felt, painting and decorating plain wood discs, sculpting shapes like acorns or pumpkins from air-dry clay, decoupaging scrapbook paper onto clear plastic ornaments, and gluing ribbons, burlap, feathers and other materials to basic ornament shapes. Let your creativity run wild!
- What are good Thanksgiving color schemes for ornaments?
Rich autumnal hues like burnt orange, olive green, muted gold, cream, brown and maroon help capture the harvest season. You can also incorporate classic Thanksgiving colors like red, yellow, orange, brown and green. Metallics like copper, silver and gold add nice pops of shine too.
- Where are the best places to display Thanksgiving ornaments?
Thanksgiving ornaments can adorn mantles, staircases, entryways, and outdoor spaces. But the main events are the Thanksgiving tree and the dining table. Focus ornament displays on these two spaces for maximal impact.
- What ornament shapes symbolize Thanksgiving?
Look for ornaments shaped like leaves, acorns, pumpkins, gourds, turkeys, pilgrims, cornucopias, and autumn fruits/veggies. Natural shapes and classic Thanksgiving imagery make perfect ornament choices.
- How can you use ornaments to decorate a Thanksgiving table?
Create a dazzling centerpiece by embellishing candleholders and vases with pinecones, mini gourds, leaves and other ornament shapes. Or populate a platter pedestal display for a kid-friendly option. Use ornaments like leaf and acorn scissors as whimsical placecard holders and attach them to napkins and flatware. Let ornaments infuse charm throughout your table!
The possibilities are truly endless when it comes to embellishing your Thanksgiving decor with meaningful ornament accents. Whether crafted by hand or store-bought, these symbolic shapes and objects add so much festive personality. Thanksgiving tree ornaments let us honor the nostalgia of the season, while also expressing our own creative flair.
So embrace the chance to get crafty and customize. Festive fall: Create a stunning Thanksgiving balloon arch and elevate your holiday decor game by adorning not only your tree, indoor spaces, table, and exterior with an abundance of ornament delight but also by adding personal touches that uniquely celebrate your own reasons for giving thanks. However you choose to decorate, let your ornament display be a reflection of your gratitude, your style, and your joy this season, making every corner of your home a testament to the warmth and spirit of Thanksgiving.