Home » The Southerner’s Guide to Charming Christmas Decor

5 holiday decorating tips to add that special Southern charm to your Christmas decor. Join the Pender & Peony social circle to get access to the guide now! With over 15 inspiring Christmas decor ideas and 3 how-to videos let your Christmas decorating start here!

Over the top Christmas light displays…

A wreath on the door and probably every window…

A poinsettia in every room…

And the nativity set in a most prominent position…

Christmas in the South is truly unique, marked by long standing traditions and an abundance of Christmas cheer displayed for all to see.  If you are lucky enough to be a Southerner or if you have spent a Christmas in the South, you know this to be true. 

Sure not every Southern family celebrates Christmas the same way, but as the first region to celebrate Christmas in the United States, I think we Southerners feel a special commitment to make the holiday bright, meaningful, and especially charming! 

Why charming? Well, by definition Charm is the power or quality of giving delight and isn’t that what decorating for Christmas is all about? Adding to the delight of the season in celebration of Christ’s birth?

And we Southerners have a special kind of charm! 😉

The Rules of Southern Christmas Decor:

  • First of all, you can never have too many Christmas trees!  

This is a fact universally recognized across the South.  It doesn’t matter if the trees are 12 foot tall or table-top size, more than one Christmas tree is a must in a Southern Christmas home.

  • Drape greenery around anything that will stand still long enough!

Use greenery to adorn mantles, stair rails, columns, and really anything that is not moving.  Be sure to mix your evergreen boughs with classic Southern plants like boxwood and magnolia.

  • Flowers are not just for summer!

Bring on the flowers with planters of paper whites, amayrillas, and poinsettias.  If you are feeling particularly ingenious, you can even make a Christmas tree out of poinsettias.

  • Citrus fruit as decor is classic and will never go out of style!

Use it as decoration and stocking stuffers.  Citrus fruit was once a rare and prized commodity in the South usually arriving from tropical ports in the winter months, so many Southerners gave oranges as gifts and treasured this once a year treat.  This tradition continues although many kids aren’t quite sure why.

  • Around here we put our crazy on display and add a bow!

Embrace your creativity and add a touch of Christmas whimsy even if you are a traditionalist.  Your whimsical element can be more subdued like a velvet bow on a spaniel statuette or you can channel your inner Steel Magnolia with a wreath bedecked by baby Jesuses.


I’ve incorporated many of the above Southern Christmas decorating tips in my home.  I do every year mostly subconsciously because this is how my mother and her mother before her decorated their homes – it’s Southern tradition!