You probably already have plans to pick up a balsam fir from the lot that sells Christmas trees on the corner in the coming days, as Thanksgiving is only a few days away (or that artificial one from the attic). You are going to want to decorate that tree, but if you aren't feeling particularly inspired—or simply don't know where to begin—we spoke to a few professional decorators to get their advice on how to craft the ideal Christmas tree. Here is what we learned from them.
We have compiled a list of the best Christmas tree ornaments, and they come in a wide range of designs and styles, so whether you're looking to spruce up your own Christmas tree ornaments or find a special gift for someone else to open on the big day, all are here.
These favorites range from traditional decorations such as glass balls and clear icicles to more kitsch-inspired choices such as pickle ornaments and realistic-looking sticks of butter.
Glass ornaments are another product line offered by Northlight, and our team is particularly fond of this merry collection of polka-dotted ornaments in jewel tones.
2. Kurt Adler Glass Decorative Egg Ornaments
Kurt Adler is reportedly another fan favorite that is widely available, as stated by Laws-Andrews. The following is a collection of egg-shaped glass ornaments decorated with glitter and gems that will go quite well with more conventional bulbs.
3. Kurt Adler Early Years Mini Glass Ball and Reflector Ornaments
Another set by Kurt Adler, this one consisting of miniature glass balls with embedded reflector elements.
4. Kurt Adler Iridescent Glass Ball Ornaments
Or, you could try out these iridescent glass balls that would blend in almost perfectly with the tree.
5. Kurt Adler Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments
Although they don't appear to be very impressive, former senior editor Anthony Rotunno decorates his Christmas tree with a set of glass icicle ornaments that are very similar to these.
6. Frontgate Ombre Glass Drip Ornaments
In addition to providing an extensive selection of artificial Christmas trees, Frontgate also provides a delightful assortment of ornaments, such as this set of ombre glass drip baubles. The tree has only a few ornaments on it, so the pearlescent finish and assortment of ball, diamond, onion, and double-point shapes make it look very pretty.
Here's a can of anchovies for you, if you're a fan of canned fish.
9. John Derian Roast Chicken Ornament
It is customary for Rotunno to make a trip to John Derian's shop around this time of year in order to stock up on the fantastically varied selection of glass ornaments that the shop carries. It's true that the prices for the ornaments run the gamut, but many of them are surprisingly affordable for the quality they offer, such as this silly $20 roast chicken.
10. Kurt Adler Hand Blown Glass Pickle Ornament
It is a time-honored tradition for many people to hang a pickle from a Christmas tree, despite the fact that the origins of this custom are the subject of some debate. We directed our attention to this traditional glass pickle ornament by Kurt Adler, which featured bumps all over its surface.
11. John Derian Pickle Ornament
Additionally, John Derian is responsible for the production of a number of pickles that have a delightfully authentic appearance.
12. Park Hill Collection Christmas Fruit Ornaments
Laws-Andrews enjoys the festive atmosphere that can be found at Park Hill Collection. This three-piece set of Christmas fruits (citrus, figs, and pomegranates) features a retro design and comes at a hefty price. However, its irresistible flavor makes it impossible to pass up.
13. Cody Foster Tomato Holiday Ornament
What do you think about a ripe tomato for your tree?
14. Cody Foster Stick of Butter Holiday Ornament
Just picture a stick of butter being hung from your tree.
15. MoMA Design Store Nativity Peg Doll Ornaments
You won't be able to find a more unique or well-curated collection of Christmas ornaments than at the MoMA Design Store. This nativity set is hand-carved and hand-painted by Colombian artisans using wood that was sourced from responsibly managed forests. Despite its higher price, it is one of our favorites.
16. MoMA Design Store Dazzling Tree Globe Christmas Ornament
This is one that is going to blow the minds of even the most dedicated Christmas tree decorators out there. This one is made of mouth-blown glass, and it features a detailed metallic Christmas tree that has sparkling lights and a garland around it.
17. CB2 Capiz Star Ornament
This time of year, it's possible that you "grew up surrounded by capiz lanterns, coasters, and trinkets" just like our junior writer Arielle Avila did. In that case, you might also find that hanging this capiz-star ornament makes you feel like you're a little bit closer to home. She says, "I've been feeling more homesick than usual this year, so I ordered one for myself as a cute little reminder of my family."
18. Vintage 3-Tier Glass Bell Ornament
As Ro and her family were growing up, they used ornaments like these glass bells to decorate the Christmas tree. She exclaims, "They are just the prettiest," adding that "the glass is delicate," and that the chime they make when they clink is "so slight and lovely."
19. Cody Foster Classical Bust With Bubble Gum Ornament
If you are interested in the plaster-bust trend that was popular in 2018, may we suggest this marvelous ornament of Aphrodite chewing gum while blowing a bubble?
Leah Muncy, a writer for Strategist who focuses on deals, mentioned that Urban Outfitters has a surprisingly good selection of ornaments, such as this jolly cowboy corgi and an equally cherry bichon frise. "I can't think of anything better than a felted dog in a little woolen hat perched atop a tree branch," she says. "I can't think of anything that would make me happier."
21. Absofine Gnome Christmas Ornaments
This group of gnomes looks like they would be most comfortable dangling from a tree with a Nordic vibe.
22. Ornament Shop Personalized House Christmas Ornament
This Hallmark-movie-set decorator-approved ornament can be personalized with your address or the address of a loved one of your choosing.
23. Hallmark Peanuts Charlie Brown With Tree Christmas Ornament
Corsillo brings to our attention the fact that "anything 'Peanuts' feels very Christmassy." Charlie Brown is pictured here with a cute little tree that everyone in the family will enjoy.
24. Cody Foster Winter Snowflake Paper Ornaments
The paper snowflake ornaments that Cody Foster creates are far superior to the ones that you or your child probably cut out when they were in kindergarten.
The MacKenzie-Childs interpretation of Santa's reindeer Dancer, complete with ballet shoes and a tutu, is just as kooky as the company's other home goods.
26. Kazuri Ornaments
The ceramic beads that are hand-crafted and hand-painted by Nairobi's female artisans, as stated by Goodee, are used in the creation of these ornaments. To put it another way, each and every one of the four ornaments in the set is completely one of a kind.
27. Impuls DJ Santa II Ornament
This cheeky Santa ornament, available at the holiday pop-up shop at Bergdorf Goodman, is one of the countless Santa ornaments that you can get, and we think it has the perfect mix of old-fashioned charm and contemporary humor.
28. Sin Ceramics Marin Ornaments
Ceramic knots designed by Virginia Sin, an artist based in Brooklyn, are yet another option for those who prefer a minimalist aesthetic.
29. Vintage Paper Ornaments
Unlike genuine Shiny Brites, these are unquestionably shatterproof. Download our templates and trace them onto cardstock to make them. Once the shapes have been cut out with scissors or a craft knife, use craft punches to make smaller shapes for embellishments. Attach pipe cleaners to your ornaments with craft glue and let dry. Make a hole in the top of your ornament and attach a string or ribbon to hang it.
30. Popsicle Stick Snowflake Ornaments
These kid-friendly creations, inspired by traditional Scandinavian straw ornaments, call for popsicle sticks, embroidery thread, and paint. First, paint the popsicle sticks white and set them aside to dry. Then, arrange matching sizes into an X and glue them together. When the glue is dry, arrange two Xs diagonally on top of each other to form a snowflake. Create an X or grid pattern with colored embroidery thread around the popsicle sticks. Tie the thread behind the snowflake and trim the excess. To hang, glue a ribbon loop to the back of the snowflake. Using colored cardstock and embellishments, make it three-dimensional.
31. 3D Paper Ornaments
Using colored cardstock and embellishments, make it three-dimensional. To make, cut five strips of paper into the following sizes: two 1.25" x 10", two 1.25" x 7", and one 1.25" x 5". Then, make a 1/4-inch hole "from each strip's top and bottom. Stack the papers with the smallest in the middle, followed by the medium strips, and finally the largest strips. Arrange all of the strips on one end and tie a piece of string or wire through the holes. Repeat on the opposite end of the strips, which you can then fan out. For added glitz, add tassels or beads to the bottom of the ornament.
32. Snowflake Ornament
If you enjoy making crafts with your Cricut, try making your own snowflake ornaments and hanging them on your tree for the most elegant holiday decoration ever.
33. Colorful Rhinestone Ornaments
Here's a quick and easy way to add some color (and sparkle) to your clear plastic baubles: Simply add some colorful rhinestones and a ribbon.
35. Gradient Ornaments
Instead of plain, solid-color ornaments, add some pretty swirls of gradient color with spray paint to any ordinary bauble.
36. Twig Ornaments
This one is simple enough to make with the kids, and it also makes great nature-inspired decor. Simply gather some twigs and use glue and embroidery thread to create some unique patterns and shapes (such as these cool trees or stars!).
37. Rudolph Ornaments
Is there anything cuter than a mini Rudolph ornament (especially with that little red foam ball as the nose)?
38. Paper Candle Ornament
Skip the plastic clip-on candles in favor of these DIY paper ones, which are just as elegant (not to mention safer and more fun to make!).
39. Salt Dough Ornaments
Making salt dough ornaments couldn't be easier — or more convenient. You only need salt, flour, and water to make these adorable holiday-themed shapes!
40. Gold Marbled Ornaments
Because nothing says sophistication like gorgeous marbled gold on your Christmas tree.
41. Balloon Dipped Ornaments
These clever ornaments create a colorful "dipped" look by using the bottom half of balloons. Genius!
42. Star Ornament
It may appear to be a sophisticated craft, but all you need is scrapbook paper and a great folding technique to make this surprisingly simple ornament.
43. 3D Paper Snowman Ornaments
These 3D paper snowman ornaments are easy to make with kids and look great on any Christmas tree.
44. Mason Jar Lid Wreath Ornaments
Here's the ultimate way to repurpose your mason jar lid rings: Make them into adorable mini wreaths!
45. Cinnamon-Scented Tree Ornament
This ornament smells even better than it looks, in case you didn't think that was possible. Bend a 30 degree angle to make it "Fold a piece of naturally coiled wrapped wire in half to create a loop, then gently insert each end into the hollow part of a cinnamon stick. Attach cut sprigs of fresh rosemary for branches and small gems for ornaments with hot glue.
46. Fluffy Santa Ornament
Don't you think Santa's beard is a little fluffier this year? It's got to be the pom-poms.
47. Glass Snow Globe Ornaments
When filled with artificial snow, mini trees, and other festive accents, clear glass ornaments double as seasonal snow globes.
48. Painted Copper Foil Ornament
These painted paper mache ornaments with copper foil tape will brighten up your Christmas.
49. Elf Door Ornament
Keep an eye out for an elf hiding behind this festive front door. Anyone for an Elf on the Shelf?
50. Cross Stitch Ornament
This gift is suitable to be personalized for everyone on your list, practice with this simple cross stitch ornament.
Although the majority of the professionals we talked to purchase their supplies for their projects from companies that cater exclusively to the trade, they did mention a few brands that are accessible to the general public. The collection features a matte, a shiny, and a glitter finish, and when viewed from a distance, they even resemble glass. (If gold isn't your thing, Northlight has a wide variety of other colors and finishes for you to choose from.)