Is November too early to decorate for Christmas?
It’s a very contentious debate in this house.
Traditionally, I would wait until the day after Thanksgiving to decorate for Christmas. In my mind, that’s the official start to the holiday season.
But, if you’re out in the world, you know that Christmas now starts in October, at least for retailers. The Christmas Creep has been pushed farther than ever this year. I know I noticed holiday decor in stores as early as September.
It’s crazy that it’s early November and I feel late to the party! Christmas is undoubtedly my favorite holiday and favorite time of year. I love how strangers can become cheery and kind. I love the music. I love the lights and decorations. I love the focus on gratitude and family and being together.
Is it too early to decorate for Christmas?
This is a very personal question.
Here are some things to think about when asking yourself whether or not it’s time to bust out the lights and snowglobes.
Let’s Talk Christmas Season Layers
There are many layers to the Christmas season. Maybe you prefer to do it all at once, making a day of it. Or, maybe you like to slowly integrate in your decor and music.
Let’s dive into the layers of Christmas below.
Layer I: Christmas Music
This one is pretty innocuous. Personally, I believe that Christmas music doesn’t have to be reserved for the season.
Silent Night? A great lullaby. Winter Wonderland? Works in February too.
I love listening to Christmas mixes on YouTube to get in the holiday mood.
Layer II: Light Indoor Christmas Decor
The next layer is to me, a true signal that we’re getting started. Maybe it starts with a little reindeer, maybe some mistletoe? We’re just flirting with Christmas here – we’re not taking Christmas out to dinner yet.
Layer III: Deep Indoor Christmas Decor
Here we go, now it’s really begun. This is what I would usually wait until Black Friday to start, but heck it I’m going to start in November. Deep indoor decor would be pulling out the big box from the attic that’s labeled XMAS and going ham.
I’m talking garlands.
I’m talking needlepoint North Pole pillows.
I’m talking fir tree scented candles.
I’m talking obscure santa memorabilia.
At this stage, you’ve gone full Christmas, baby!
Layer IV: Outdoor Decor
This is to show the neighbors that you’re not messing around and waiting until December. This is when you get out the gloves, the boots, the lights, and you find a tall person. Anyone tall will work.
You hang those lights and you show that neighborhood that you are ready for Christmas and you’re not messing around.
Layer V: Live Christmas Tree
If you have a fake tree, please fight me in the comments. Live trees are superior. I don’t care if it’s 4 feet tall. Get a real tree. Forget to water it. Spend a good portion of December trying to figure out if it’s going to hold out until Christmas. Find pine needles in places you didn’t know pine needles could go for years to come.
If you have your tree up, Christmas is a comin’. There’s nothing better than a lit Christmas tree with Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on in the background.
Layer VI : Presents Under the Tree
This is the last and final layer. Putting presents under the tree is the ultimate sign that Christmas is near. If you have kids or a pets, this might be a no-no until Christmas Eve.
When I was growing up, “Santa” put all the presents under the tree on Christmas Eve night. We would leave out cookies, milk, and carrots for the reindeer. The living room doors closed and the house would fill with a quiet excitement. We could hardly fall asleep.
My siblings and I would wait at the top of the stairs together and then rush into the living room all at once while our parents watched.
It was always inexplicably magical.
There are very few things in my life that compare to the excitement and enchantment of Christmas morning.
Now, I have a kid, so I’m more than excited to share that magic with her.
Do you do layers? Or go all at once? There’s no right way to get into the Christmas spirit.
Where do you stand on this? Is November too early to decorate for Christmas? Let me know below!
Well, I live in a country known for having the longest Christmas — so you’ll hear Mariah Carey and Michael Buble as early as September 1.
Establishments all start decorating by that date too, though not as overblown since there’s still Halloween. But after Halloween, Christmas decorating is turned up to 11!
Yes – it seems like the official start of the Christmas season has been moved to November 1!
It isn’t that early. The red and green decorations are already popping up in the streets here. I prefer waiting till December though.
Emma, West Sussex
I love your Christmas layers!
Thank you for the inspiration – and you’re SO right about the music!
I can’t decide if I’m going to decorate in layers this year or go all in and do it all in one day! Thank you for taking the time to read and comment!
I usually start decorating in November, after Bonfire Night is out of the way. If I leave it until December it all seems to be over too quickly. 🤭💫