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What Date Do Christmas Decorations Go Up?

Updated November 20, 2021
What Date Do Christmas Decorations Go Up?

There’s no Bible-specified Christmas decoration date.

Some families strictly follow their own traditions of putting up decorations; others do this at random dates when work routine leaves them some free time.

Certain times, however, are better suitable for putting up Christmas decorations than others.

For example, Advent and Saint Nicholas’ Day have religious roots and are closely related to Christmas, making them perfect for decorating your house.

But these days, Christmas is becoming less religious and more of a family tradition for many people. Thus, some prefer to put up their Christmas lights and Santa figurines based on other considerations.

A large part of US residents starts preparing for the holiday season right after Halloween passes. Another major part prefers to wait until the middle of December. Both points of view are justified.

The truth is, you can put up indoor Christmas decorations whenever you please.

But when it comes to outdoor decorations, you should stay considerate of the people around you. So make sure to coordinate Christmas decoration date with your neighbors, and don’t forget to estimate your power consumption.

After Halloween

Some people start decorating their house interior and exterior for Christmas right after Halloween, at the start of November. This way, you get to enjoy Christmas lights, wreaths, and other decorations for at least two months.

Setting up Christmas decorations after Halloween is also a great way to avoid routine and jump straight away from one holiday to another.

But it’s essential to let Halloween be Halloween, as the atmosphere of these two holidays doesn’t match at all.

Thus, don’t put up Christmas decorations until about a week since Halloween passes. Remember that not everyone takes down spooky decorations on November 1st.

As Soon as Thanksgiving Passes

Another popular Christmas decoration date is the start of December after Thanksgiving passes.

The atmosphere of Christmas and Thanksgiving doesn’t clash – both are family celebrations, and eating turkey in the gleaming light of Christmas lights is wonderful.

You may even set up Christmas decorations on Thanksgiving when all family gathers together.

But if you prefer to enjoy one holiday at a time, Thanksgiving can serve as a great indicator of when to put up Christmas decorations.


Christmas is a religious holiday in the first place, so coordinating the decoration date with Advent makes perfect sense. This period lasts four weeks until Christmas is dedicated to the hope for the arrival of Christ.

In a sense, the meanings of Advent and Christmas decorations are very similar. When we put up wreaths and lights, we emphasize our desire to meet Christmas.

Everyone becomes a little kid for a while, looking at decorations with hope, joy, and excitement of the soon arrival of a favorite holiday.

Each Sunday of Advent has a special symbolism, so you may want to match this meaning with your perception of Christmas decorations.

For example, the first Sunday of Advent symbolizes hope. Therefore, setting up decorations on this day may indicate the hope and excitement of soon Christmas arrival.

The second Sunday of Advent represents faith and is the perfect decoration date for religious people.

If Christmas isn’t only about delicious food and shopping for you but has a deep religious meaning, this may be the ideal time.

The third Sunday of Advent may be the most suitable for decorating your house, as it symbolizes joy. And Christmas decorations are meant to make us happy.

Lastly, the fourth Sunday of Advent stands for peace and purity. It’s time that should be spent with family. Putting up decorations on the last Sunday of Advent can be a beautiful family tradition.

Saint Nicholas’ Day

Saint Nicholas serves as the origin for modern American Santa Claus. He was a Bishop in Myra who lived during the fourth century.

The exact year of Saint Nicholas’ death is unknown, but we know the day – December 6th. By putting up Christmas decorations on this day, you can pay tribute to the real-life Santa Claus.

Never too Early?

Some believe that it’s never too early for Christmas decorations. And such an opinion can be supported by worthy points.

Christmas decorations are meant to light up our routine, spreading joy. However, depending on your region, the days may get short and the weather very cold at the beginning of Autumn.

Dark and cold months tend to be daunting for many of us, so why not make yourself and the ones around you a bit happier?

Christmas decorations are often DIY, so putting them up earlier is a perfect chance to showcase everyone your skills.

Creating DIY Christmas decorations is also a fun process for the entire family that can become a tradition.

Plus, you don’t have to put up all decorations at once. For example, a Christmas tree won’t survive from September to the end of December, and your neighbors may be confused by Christmas lights during Halloween.

But there’s no harm in putting up a Nativity set or a garland inside your house.

A Week Before Christmas

Some, on the opposite, prefer to wait with Christmas decorations until a week before Christmas. This makes sense from practical, religious, and emotional sides.

Over time, we get used to anything. No matter how beautiful and exciting Christmas decorations are at first.

After seeing them for two months in a row, you may stop noticing them or even become annoyed by tinsel and colorful lights everywhere.

Leaving Christmas decoration date until a week before Christmas lets you preserve the magical atmosphere. It makes Christmas a genuinely unique period, momentary as all miracles in the world.

Plus, the last Sunday before Christmas is the time when Jesus was introduced to the world. Until that day, people in Bethlehem didn’t know about his birth.

Thus, they wouldn’t put up any decorations earlier if lights and Christmas trees existed at that time. But once his birth was revealed, the real celebration could begin.

Setting up Christmas decorations later also lets you save on electricity. This can be a major concern in states where energy costs are high.

Coordinate with Your Neighbors

Unless you live in a very remote location, you should be mindful of the people around you. After all, we don’t put up outdoor Christmas decorations for ourselves but rather for others to see.

Pay attention to when your neighbors put up their Christmas lights, Santa figures, and other festive items.

Some neighborhoods have strict rules regarding house aesthetics and decorating dates. But even if your neighbors don’t care when you do this, it’s best not to stand out too much.

A single house fully decorated for Christmas in October looks odd, but so does a single house not decorated a week before Christmas.

Most of your neighbors will likely be thankful to you for bringing more joy to the street. But others may not enjoy increased illumination and have trouble sleeping, or simply not celebrate Christmas.

So it’s beneficial to ask your closest neighbors whether they will mind your decorations if you want to put them up early.

Practical Considerations

While the Christmas season is full of joy and fun, our daily worries don’t really go anywhere.

So when putting up Christmas decorations, you should consider practical aspects such as increased electricity bills and your neighbor’s comfort.

Think of whether you can afford to pay double for energy for three months. Sure, you may put your lights up early and only turn them on once a week, but what’s the point of having decorations that aren’t visible?

It would be best if you also remembered that some decorations aren’t everlasting.

Wreaths and garlands made from real plants have an even shorter life than Christmas trees, as they can’t be watered. These should be put up no earlier than the beginning of December.

Is the Christmas Tree Real?

The Christmas tree is one of the core holiday decorations. But unless you opt for a faux fir, it won’t last forever.

With proper care, including regular watering and correct temperature, a real Christmas tree can last for two months at best. Afterward, it starts to dry out, drop needles, and soon becomes a fire hazard.

Even if you put up all other decorations early, it’s best to wait until the start of December to put up your Christmas tree.

Of course, this doesn’t apply to live trees growing in your backyard. These can be decorated at any moment. Perhaps, planting a real fir tree outside your house and having a faux tree inside is a wise move.

Create Your Traditions

In the end, you don’t have to agree with anyone’s opinion and follow other’s examples when it comes to Christmas decorations.

This holiday is all about family traditions, so you could create your own if you don’t yet have a specific date for putting up decorations.

Most traditions in the world have originated because someone long ago drew connections between dates and occurrences or has assigned items symbolic meanings. You could do this too, based on what matters to you personally.

Perhaps, some aspects of the holiday season have a deeper meaning for you than others. For example, it may be Advent, Christmas market opening, gift shopping, or any other period indicating that the season has arrived.

Optionally, you can tie the decorating to something not even related to Christmas but happening at the same period, such as your kid’s birthday.

Image credit: Unsplash

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