Outdoor decor trends: natural, cozy, sustainable

As we know, the home has become more central for many of us during the pandemic, and that means on the outside as well as on the inside. This holiday season, designers and retailers have suggestions for updating window, door and yard decorations.

Trends include durability, naturalness and comfort.


New York interior designer John Douglas Eason appreciates a season when ‘above’ is often just the right thing.

“But that said, I love the subtle holiday design, incorporating nature and keeping it tonal. I love monochrome gourds with a gnarled tree branch for interest and fresh greens, ”he says.

Eason suggests light fixtures to light up the walkways, “and I played with the idea of ​​connecting them with thick garlands and woody elements.

“I really think a more natural holiday design is absolutely topical this season.”

At the end of the holidays, he notes, recyclable decor can return to nature “and help ensure the gift of a safer earth for generations to come.”

Professional organizer Shira Gill, whose new book, “Minimalista” (Ten Speed ​​Press), offers decluttering tips, also suggests going biodegradable. String on a popcorn and cranberry garland for planters or railings, or make a front door wreath with tree clippings or fallen twigs.

“These can all fall into the compost bin when the New Year arrives,” she says.


If going to a cozy cabin is more ambitious than doable, you can still get the feel of the chalet. A few birch logs placed in a galvanized or enameled steel planter, with pine or cedar branches and faux or real moss covering the pot, will look inviting with or without a sprig of string lights in warm hues.

The removable peel and stick decals can dress up a front door or windows facing the street. The Tempaper White Christmas Village wall sticker set gives you pine trees, deer, various buildings and an array of stars to create a silhouette scene.

Grandin Road also has a silhouette theme, with powder coated metal deer and mountains.

The Home Depot Polar Wishes Collection features a herd of illuminated white deer in various poses, as well as a sleigh and deer set. A slender tree lit in white would look enchanting on a city porch or in a suburban yard.

Instead of the usual crown, hang a set of Terrain Silver and Leather Sleigh Bells.


Nicole Fisher, who founded her firm BNR Interiors in New York’s Hudson Valley, likes to mix proven Christmas colors with new touches.

“My color scheme this year will be green and red with black and white accents,” she says. “I love the traditional concept of black and white, but also how unexpected it is for the holidays. Harlequin and plaid prints in small doses, for ornaments or decorative accents, work equally well inside and outside the home.

She loves garlands of magnolia leaves with green tops and a rich burgundy red on their fuzzy undersides.

“These are my favorites because they burst against a blanket of snow,” says Fisher. “They’re also very durable and last all season, always fresh. “

If you can’t find magnolia garlands locally, Food52 quickly ships beautiful and fresh ones. And there are cute faux versions you can spruce up with extra pops of green, red, or copper magnolia sprigs, on Etsy, Jamali Garden, and West Elm.

Garlands of all kinds of greenery can warm up the look of railings or door frames. Leave them natural or dress them up with metallic accents and small decorations for your overall theme.

A 9 foot multi-colored garland at Lowe’s is battery operated, if you don’t have an outdoor outlet nearby. Set the timer and the lights turn on and off at the same times every night. There is also a 24 inch crown with the same characteristics.

Why not bathe the front door itself in holiday colors?

“It might sound extreme,” says Leigh Spicher, national design director for home developer Ashton Woods, “but you can paint your front door to coordinate with the seasons, especially if your home is a neutral color. So that means you can have a red or green door for the holidays and then repaint it bright yellow for the spring.


Gill’s aesthetic is minimalist, yet striking. “Encourage all the senses,” she advises. “Project festive images on your front door – think of a snowy winter wonderland or a slideshow of your favorite vacation memories. “

Like Eason, she loves the idea of ​​lining the aisles with lanterns or large white candles for “a chic and minimalist look that remains festive and charming”.

LightShow’s SnowStorm Projection sets an 8-foot-wide blizzard of snowflakes dancing across the front of the house. Another version has snowflakes that fall gently over an expanse of 30 feet.

While winter white is great for a modern look, Eason says adding colors to the scheme can make it “fresh from the 2020s.”

“Upgrade your contemporary design with vintage embellishments or add a gorgeous teal, purple or delicious chocolate brown velvet ribbon,” he says.

Peachy pink is another on-trend holiday shade, in bright, blush tones.

For Hanukkah, Wayfair offers fabric door and garage murals printed with blue, white and silver symbols and greetings.


Grandin Road’s oversized, shiny fiberglass ornaments appear to have knocked the Christmas tree down from a giant. Or keep it small: These handy little solar lights you set up in the ground around a garden or driveway received a holiday outfit with candy cane stripes and a snowy beanie, at Lowe’s.

Inflatable decoration might not be for everyone, but if you have small children, it’s hard to ignore the fun of seeing a gigantic figure on a lawn. Lowe’s has favorites from Toy Story, Frozen, Grinch, Peanuts, and Star Wars. At The Home Depot, there’s a large Millennium Falcon, inflatable sleds, trees, Santas, snowmen, and a gingerbread house that you can walk through for holiday fun inside.

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