What Defines Farmhouse Style?
Unlike modern styles, farmhouse Christmas decor was bred from those in a certain time using what they had on hand. Farmhouses, by nature, originated from farmers who would use the materials on the lands they were given as colonists. I say colonists as, while farmhouse style can be argued to originate in Europe, contemporary elements are definitely North American. This lifestyle didn’t really go away but it being a popular trend has been revived in recent years.
Some links on this page are affiliate links which means that, if you choose to make a purchase, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. We will not be aware of what you have specifically purchased and will earn even on the things that you buy but we have not advertised. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. We greatly appreciate your support!
What Are the Elements of Farmhouse Style?
To understand elements of farmhouse style, it’s important to understand what materials were common on the lands they had. The wood cut down to make space for their homes and the stones they cleared from their fields were available. The stones became the foundations of their homes, their chimneys, markers on their lands, and hewn down for practical applications. Wood became the go to for most everything else from the bulk of the house, fence, tools, etc. Metal would also be used but that would be more a specialty material as it would be something they’d buy. As such, it would not be common in a lot of their lives but used as stoves, stronger tools, etc.
What Is A Farmhouse Style Christmas?
As lives, at that time, were spent almost exclusively on work, the home was used for cooking/eating and resting. Practicalities of farm life has led to an enduring culture of conservative management, making the most of what you have. Farmhouse Christmas decor in modern day stays true to this idea by keeping to simplistic decor, dependent on natural materials. For a more thorough essay on the history of Farmhouse decor see the article that hunker.com put out.
What Colors Are Farmhouse Christmas?
In keeping with simplistically using what there is around, the natural landscape colors are key for a farmhouse Christmas. Red, Green, and any type of white are the spirit of farmhouse colors derived from the plants and snowy weather. Amaryllis and holly are the brightest, natural color in the cold winter, becoming symbolic of Christs blood in Christian tradition. The green leaves of these plants and needles of pine trees are next in their brightness in winter. Green is represented in Christian tradition as the eternal life of Jesus just like the green plants being everlasting. Snowy landscapes can be represented by either cold or pure white lights whereas warm white could represent the brown earth.
Wooden Christmas Decorations
As I explain in my related wooden decoration blog, wooden decorations are a very broadly defined type. Carved decorations are, possibly, the most farmhouse related decorations as they’re doing what you can with the resources farmers had. Whether they are factory made or truly handmade, they generally give an aura of being individually designed. As well, they usually look good during the daytime, are customizable with lots of replaceable ribbons, lights, etc. The wood is always treated but it will succumb to the elements someday so don’t get too attached. Storage is easy as they’re generally flatter, but wood is sensitive to any ‘dings’ and will not be easily fixable.
Farmhouse Christmas Table Decor
More is less, a burlap runner, linen tablecloth, or basic but eye-catching decorations does the trick. While burlap is from Bangladesh and India, it is considered indispensable to farmhouse ideals, possibly due to versatility and longevity. Furthermore, it’s naturally a good earthy tone with a clear connection to the dirt that farms eat, sleep, and breathe. A runner allows you to have an accent without the style starting to look like you’re trying too hard.
Having a linen tablecloth is a simple way to be fancy without being ‘over the top’. Being able to keep something pure, clean, and smooth will, in the midst of dirty work, indicate time and effort. The simplicity and relative economical attributes fit the thrifty farming families.
Depending on your guests, a centerpiece may be safest for children or German Christmas pyramid if you’re not including kids. Centerpieces range from seasonal items in a bowl to a more elaborate art piece, all dependent on your own vision. German Christmas pyramids are those decorations that have candles whose heat turns fans that are above it.
Farmhouse Christmas Lights
You can read up on the different kinds of lights and applications on another blog post. However, I will explain out the basic applications to the farmhouse style here to try and inspire your decoration brainstorming. In that post I explain out why I do not recommend incandescent bulbs anymore so that is a presupposition here.
For this section, I just want to give you a frame of reference to plan out your farmhouse Christmas Decor.
Hearkening back to more traditional lights, albeit not as old as original farmhouses, are the C9 lights. C9 (C standing for conical, which is their shape) are made to look like older incandescent light bulbs. They are especially useful for lining houses, larger windows, barns, and other large structures. Coming in a range of colors, you can easily get them in any color scheme or style you like.
However, C9 lights can look overpowering if the size of bulb is not adjusted for the size of thing decorated. To make things fit to proper scale, chicken coops, baby barns, dog houses, etc. all get lined with C6 bulbs. (The numbers after ‘C’ refer to the size, i.e. the C6 bulb is more fitting for smaller structures.)
Mini lights are useful for covering bushes and other landscape without the headache of weaving light strings back and forth. Arguably the most versatile light, they come in a range of forms and are the most common in premade decorations. White icicle lights fit the farmhouse concept of simplicity as they are just a string of lights with a twist. They have branches of varying lengths to create the icicle effect, but this doesn’t increase the work of hanging them. With this same concept of simplicity and tradition, mini lights also line candy canes that are put along your driveway. However, below’s a video where I explain why, if there’s any wind in your area, I don’t recommend candy canes.
A discussion about pathway and driveway lights https://www.amazon.ca/s?k=pathway+lights+Christmas&crid=1DECVM4I5IIAC&sprefix=pathway+lights+christmas+%2Caps%2C86&ref=nb_sb_noss_2 #christmas #christmastree #christmascountdown #christmastiktok #christmasdecor #christmaseve #christmaslist #christmaslook #christmaslists #christmaslove #christmaslights #christmaslightshow #christmaslover #christmas2022 #christmaslightscheck #smarthome #smartlife #holiday #holidaycountdown #holidaytiktok #holidaymodeactivated #holidaybeat #holidayvibes #holidays #holidaydecor #christmasdecor #christmasdecorating #christmasdecoration #holidaydecorating #light #lighter #lights #lighttalent #color #colors #coloring #happy #merrychristmas #merrychristmas2022 #blogger #blog #fyp #fypシ #fypage #fypシ゚viral #fypsounds #fypp #fyppp #fypppp #fyppppp #fypppppp #fyppppppp #fypppppppp #fypppppppp #fyppppppppppp #fypppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #chrismasdecorations♬ original sound – Holiday Display Tips
Micro, aka fairy, lights are especially useful if you have a non-illuminated item, you would like dressed up at dark. My video outlines the differences between micro and mini lights, demonstrating they come in the same colors and effects. It’s especially important to mention for those not experienced in micro lights, they can come in plug-in or battery forms.
Farmhouse Christmas Style Garland
Historically, garland has had both significant faith-based meanings as well as characteristics just meant for secular aesthetics. Originally, garland were pine branches and other greenery, but colonial culture adjusted this standard to being popcorn and dried fruits. In the modern disposable era, common alternative forms that are still considered holiday related and traditional are tinsel and beaded. While opinions will differ, the simplicity and basic materials of modern alternatives can be argued to fit within Farmhouse style.
Popcorn and dried fruit garland
Popcorn is literally regular popped corn with a string woven through the middle of a line of them. These strings often, but not consistently, include dried fruit, which is historically accurate to the available resources for farmers. Dried fruits are important as maize (where we get popcorn) and dried fruits were both common leftovers. At the end of the season, these crop related items were remnants of what was not sold or eaten. For a good tutorial on this type of garland, go here. However, while it’s simple and cheap, your issue might be more time constraints rather than money, but there’s a solution. There are plastic simulated forms that will not damage (as easily), won’t rot, and don’t need to be put together.At the end of the season, these garland strings can be unceremoniously tossed in storage with no concerns.
Tinsel is generally understood to be individual threads of metal foil strewn in a ‘controlled, chaotic’ way over a tree. Nuremberg (where Nazis were prosecuted) is the birthplace of this decoration where it was used to reflect candlelight in trees. It’s morphed over the last 400 years in the material it is made of as the original material, silver, tarnishes. This, and the cost, made it unobtainable for anyone who wasn’t wealthy, so it switched over to copper and tin. WWII’s demand for resources then threw a monkey wrench in that and the subsequent idea of using lead proved unhealthy. Now that it has landed at plastic being the default form of tinsel has branched out in its uses. Garland, specifically, has adapted to include tinsel as short strips packed together resembling a string of tight, metallic pom poms.
Beaded garland, resembling fake pearl necklaces, is one of the most common garlands so they are easy to get replacements. Often coming in specific colors, you can get more, be it to replace broken ones, or add length to displays. This ability to be replaced means you can continue a tradition of a specific garland, even if some get damaged.
Farmhouse Christmas Window Decor
Whereas eyes are called the windows to the soul, windows can be viewed as being the eyes of the house. Eyes affect our perception of the world but the way we adorn them also affects how the world sees us. Whether we’re conscious of it or not, we choose our glasses based on how they look, trim our eyebrows, etc. But how our eyes work affects our perception of the world, understanding of it, and how we feel about it. Looking out on the world with a decision to be positive and understanding helps us be more joyful and loving.
Why Is This Element Important as Farmhouse Christmas Decor?
In this same way, your windows affect both the way your house is perceived and how you perceive the outside. Having positive window decor will make onlookers see the inside of your home as becoming a magical Christmas workshop. The main window display options are silhouettes, candles, window clings, and spray on decor.
Arguably subsets of wireframes, silhouettes are 2 dimensional lighted decorations that are usually suction cupped onto windows. They come in a range of sizes, colors, and designs such that it’s difficult to speak in more than generalities. The range of designs include a lot of nostalgic ides that can be relevant to this style. How easy they are to set up fits the Farmhouse principle of simplicity and they’re rare enough to look homemade. Key point to keep in mind is that you need to think about the power source for your silhouette. If its battery operated, you’ll need to keep an eye on the battery packs and replace or charge as needed. Non-battery-operated options mean that you’ll need to think about timer’s vs plugging and unplugging each one every day. If you want to think about timers, I discuss smart technologies at the end of this blog.
Electric candelabras are, in our modern views, considered to be a very traditional looking decoration. They come in variations of candle colors and effects, as well as the base itself having basic variations. So, you really should research the reviews on the particular candelabra you’re looking at to make your decision, for quality. Other than quality, there isn’t a lot of distinct differences between the products.
A seemingly more basic version of the candelabras though is the individual candle, suction cupped to the window. Traditionally, the individual candlestick is the more common thing for the commoners who would be farmers. In addition to being traditional, these candlesticks’ effects and specific colors are customizable with a remote. Negatively, they’re not on a timer so will need daily work to keep them on at the right times.
Less Traditional Options
While farmhouse decor does have rules, there aren’t judges so, as the artist, you’re free to make your own interpretation. If you’re operating within this freedom, you are able to adjust some modern mediums to farmhouse inspired decor. The three forms that will make an impact without adding on too much work are blow molds, wireframes, and inflatables. Within each, there are thematic elements that relate to farm life and/or exude nostalgia.
Farmhouse Style Blow Molds
As I go into in my blow mold FAQ blog post, these are not your cheapest option for decorations. There are many factors to why they’re the most expensive but if you can afford them, you won’t regret it. Three classic forms of blow molds that fit the nostalgia of your grandparents’ Christmas’ are candles, Santa, and the Grinch.
Candles are one of the oldest looking decorations as candles were the light source of those living in original farmhouses. Blow mold versions of candles are some of the most commonly and oldest seen forms of this medium. The ridge at the bottom (possibly the edge of a candlestick) is helpful when attempting to stabilize this against wind. Simply tie a cord around it and secure with a solid spike (video) and you’ll have an immediately impressive decoration.
While the modern conceptualization of Santa was born from Coca-Cola in 1931, this image is still considered important to Christmas. It can easily be felt that his traditional looking form would be something the farmhouse dwellers would believe in. The belief in Santa in general can be controversial depending on your faith views but Nicholas was a strong Christian.
The Dr Seuss Grinch invented in 1957 has become, for the average person, something synonymous with Christmas. Blow molds here have become both more modern and more expensive, but this is meant to get creative juices flowing.
Wireframe Christmas Decorations
While wireframes are a relatively new concept, they can give an old-fashioned impression. The artistic feel of the individualized decorations hearkens back to the personal touches that vendors would put into their creations. While there’s, more often than not, mass produced in a factory, they still can create a notion that they’re personalized.
As I reference in my blog post on the topic, wireframes have the plus side of being easily collapsible/storable. If they are of any substantial size, they are, for the most part, held together with zip ties. Zip ties can be snipped with scissors and then the decoration can be stored. Wireframes are not susceptible to mold, fading, or cracking as much as the blow molds, inflatables, and wooden decorations.
To have all the information, note that wireframes are difficult, if not impossible, to repair. If power cords are frayed, the electrical work is not subbed out for replacements; dents and cracks are not fixable. While they are easily broken down for storage, the deconstructed parts are irregularly shaped so it’s difficult to store.
Inflatable Christmas Decorations
While not fitting a strict interpretation of farmhouse style, I would be remiss to not discuss inflatables. For clarity, they are not made out of any of the materials common to farmhouses nor are they historical items. Arguably, though, they can still be fitting as there are forms that fit the overall look and they are simplistic.
Although not fitting the hardwork part of farmhouse life, the simple set up fits with using the farmhouse for resting. Inflatables can add a significant ‘punch’, if that’s your desire, without too much work. This is important as many holiday artists are discouraged once the work starts mounting up. My blog post on inflatables should answer most FAQ.
Smart Technologies For Your Farmhouse Christmas Decor
Smart technologies are the antithesis of traditional, but they have a role in any display that doesn’t exhaust you. Farmhouse Christmas Decor should not take all your effort as your home is to be a place of relaxation. The term smart usually refers to the ability to control things by use of a cell phone and possibly computer. The things controlled are on/off times, colors, and effects (i.e. fade, flashing, color changing, etc.). There are options for individual smart plugs, as well as the plug outlets themselves to be smart. There’s individual smart lights and light strips to allow control of the color, effects, and when they turn on/off. Below is a visual example of a smart light bulb (the title on the video is showing up incorrectly as relating to light strings)
A tutorial on the role of smart bulbs with a how to in setting up Globe Suite’s one, and how it looks in practice #christmas #christmastree #christmascountdown #christmastiktok #christmasdecor #christmaseve #christmaslist #christmaslook #christmaslists #christmaslove #christmaslights #christmaslightshow #christmaslover #christmas2022 #christmaslightscheck #smarthome #smartlife #smartland #smartlights #smartlight #smartlighting #globesuite #holiday #holidaycountdown #holidaytiktok #holidaymodeactivated #holidaybeat #holidayvibes #holidays #holidaydecor #christmasdecor #christmasdecorating #christmasdecoration #holidaydecorating #light #lighter #lights #lighttalent #color #colors #coloring #happy #merrychristmas #merrychristmas2022 #blogger #blog #fyp #fypシ #fypage #fypシ゚viral #fypsounds #fypp #fyppp #fypppp #fyppppp #fypppppp #fyppppppp #fypppppppp #fypppppppp #fyppppppppppp #fypppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fypppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #fyppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppppp #voiceeffects #voiceover #chrismasdecorations♬ original sound – Holiday Display Tips
How Do You Store Your Christmas Stuff?
Short answer: see my storage blog post for examples, links, and videos to help with storing your farmhouse Christmas decor. Do not neglect planning out your storage if you want to avoid end of season stress.