This is my favorite (and easiest!) way to decorate the outside of our house for the holidays – and no lights or timers are needed! All you need is some cheap wreaths, ribbon, and candles with sensors if you really want to get fancy.
When someone told me how easy it was to hang wreaths on my windows, it was an “Aha!” moment. I was saying how I thought homes with wreaths were so beautiful because it made the house look decorated during the day, too… but that I didn’t feel like dealing with huge ladders to get them on our second-story windows. I remember that person looking at me like I had ten heads.
“You just open the window and stick the wreath out.”
Oh my gosh, that’s it?! Well, duh! Why didn’t I realize that?!! So if any of you thought it was difficult to add wreaths to your windows, too, I’m here to help you out!
Read below for more information, including links to the wreaths, bows, ribbon, and candles that I have.
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To start, you need wreaths. Count the number of windows you have to figure out how many you need. I bought the cheapest wreaths I could find because I figured that from far away you wouldn’t be able to tell if they were high-quality or not. Fifteen years later, I’m still using the same wreaths, you guys! And they still look great.
Find wreaths here that are similar to the ones I have.
I know you might be buying a lot of wreaths to start, and that will feel like a big investment. But I’m telling you – you will use these for years and years and years!! And your house will look beautiful, day and night.
Next, each wreath will need a bow. Again, I used basic bows that weren’t too expensive. They will fade over time, so every 5 years or so, you might want to switch them out.
Find bows here that are what I use.
TIE RIBBON TO HOLD THE WREATHS
I like to use wide red ribbon so it’s visible from the road. I like the pop of red against the house.
Find ribbon here that I use.
I recently updated my ribbon so it’s looking fresh again. I also wrapped some around my garland that lines our front door – that way the ribbon matches all over the outside of the house. You could also weave some through your Christmas tree indoors.
TIP: MARK EACH WREATH SO YOU KNOW WHICH WINDOW TO PUT IT IN EACH YEAR. I USE A SHARPIE AND WRITE ON THE BACK OF THE RIBBON.
Now simply open your windows and slide the wreaths out. Close the window on the ribbon to hold it in place. Leave yourself some extra length so you can hold on to the wreath. (I have lost many-a-wreath out the window while hanging them, and then you have to walk all the way around to retrieve it!)
KNOT WILL HOLD WREATH IN PLACE
To keep the wreath secure, make sure there’s a knot right up at the edge of the window.
Who knew it was so easy?! Obviously not this girl. Glad my friend finally enlightened me!
See how the house looks decorated all day long? Homes are always lit up at night, but I love to be a bit festive during the day as well.
Pop some candles in the windows, and you can call it a day! Even if you decide not to string any lights at all outside, the wreaths and candles will make your house feel festive.
I like the candles with sensors (find the ones I have here) so they turn on and off by themselves – easy! You have to plug them in, so you might need some extension cords occasionally, but it’s worth it to not have to walk around the house to turn them on and off. I know there are some you can buy with suction cups to make sure they don’t fall (like this), but I usually just hold them down with a little painter’s tape if they don’t seem steady. (For those of you with toddlers, these might not be for you where your kids can reach them. Your little ones will surely love them a little too much!)
So pretty and it doesn’t get much easier than this! Happy decorating, my friends!
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Hope you are all enjoying this time of year. It gets so hectic!! Try to take time to enjoy before it passes you by!
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I stumbled upon your website via a pin on Pinterest. Thanks so much for your great wreath-hanging directions and pics! You made it look like something I may a thallus be able to pull off! I am heading to the craft store right now! You have a great site with lots of great ideas! Keep up the great work and thanks for sharing! –a First Grade Teacher in Pennsylvania
Sorry about the misspellings! Autocorrect on my iPod changed what I typed! I wanted to say your wreath-hanging idea looks like something I may ACTUALLY be able to pull off! :) I will have to look up what a thallus is! LOL!
Thanks for the sweet note, Dottie! You are so funny about the typo. I send a lot of crazy stuff myself sometimes thanks to auto-correct! :) Just got all my wreaths up myself today, as a matter of fact! The house looks so festive day and night… it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here! :) Have a wonderful holiday season!
P.S. As a teacher, I thought you might be interested in this post if you missed it: 10 Things to Think About Before Your Child Starts Kindergarten (That Have Nothing to Do with Academics). Take care!
I love your windows. Could you tell me the brand or who makes them?
I’m a Kinder teacher in Colorado and I love your ideas. Thank you!
Hi Vicki! We didn’t build our house, and I have been looking all over our windows for a name of some kind for you… no luck! During some renovating on the back of the house, though, we have put in Jeldwin windows when a new window has been needed, and they have been great. We have some that open up/down and some that open with a crank-out. They look just like the ones in this post to keep the look consistent across our house. Hope that helps! I’m glad you are finding some ideas here that work for you! Enjoy life in Colorado–it is so beautiful there! Take care and thanks for stopping by my blog!
Thank you for taking the time to get the information on your windows. Have a Wonderful New Year!
You’re very welcome… happy to do it! :) Take care and all the best in 2014 to you as well!
I know it’s been 13 years, but do you remember where you bought your candles?
Gosh, you are testing me with that question!! :) It was probably Frontgate or some type of catalog like that – I like the ones with the sensors so I don’t have to walk around and plug them all in! Hope you can find some!!
Took your idea and this tonight to my house. Looked your trick!!!!
Purchased the wreathes and the bows at Michael’s and they were 50% off. =)
House looks great and so easy!!!!
gesh – I should proof read before I hit post
Took your idea and did this to my house last night. Loved your trick!!!
Purchased the wreathes and bows at Michael’s and they were 50% off. =)
House looks great and was so easy!!!
LOL! I knew what you meant! :) So glad you loved the result. I have been using my wreaths for 16 years and counting!! I feel like it’s my “signature decoration”. I especially like how it makes the house seem festive during daylight hours!
I want to try this. But I’m worried that there will be the slightest space where the ribbon sits, to allow cold air to come through. Has anyone experienced this?
I have not found this to be the case in my own experience. The ribbon is so flat that the window still seals completely.
Look beautiful. I think I’m ready to start this adventure but I still have one question please. If you’re hanging in the wreaths by a single ribbon does the winter weather cause them to blow and flop around at all?
Yes, occasionally I will realize one is facing the house… I will reach out and flip it around. But the shorter the ribbon, the less likely this is to happen.
I love the look of the wreaths on the exterior of the windows. I live in Michigan and we can have hard winters, with strong winds along with a lot of snow. Have you had any issues with the wreaths hitting the windows to hard on a windy day?
Sometimes I do hear them moving around – and once in a while they will flip and be facing the window. Shorter ribbons will keep them from doing that quite as much. But overall, it’s really okay. We live on a lake here in Pittsburgh, and it gets really windy sometimes – the wreaths move, but it’s not too big of an issue. Good luck!
This is dumb question, but don’t you have screens on your windows? I love this look, but we have screens on all of our windows, and i can’t see how to make this work!! Is this a regional thing, screens/no screens, lol??
Ha! Great question! I did remove a few screens, but most of our windows along the front of our house don’t have screens. Oftentimes builders don’t add them to those front windows because it looks “cleaner” without them. Screens are easy to pop out, though – although a little bit more effort.