Citrus Fruit Christmas Decorations

We moved here with just our luggage on the plane so aside from a nativity set, Christmas decorations were not something we brought. I have been thinking for awhile about how I was going to decorate for Christmas. I didn’t want to go out and buy a bunch of cheap decorations, but I still wanted our home to be festive. We were pleased to find that there was an artificial tree in our garage when we moved in, making that one less thing we had to spend money on. It’s nothing great, but it’s decent, and decorated it looks quite nice. It has been a fun challenge to try to find ways to decorate with what I have. Our town is tiny and with no car to get to the “big city” it has been somewhat of a challenge. I can’t even find ribbon anywhere in town. Needless to say, crafting is taking on a whole new dimension. I thought I would share with you a few of our homemade decorations. I was really pleased with how my citrus fruit decorations came out. They are really easy to make and they turned out quite nice. I decided to try a variety of citrus fruits. Most of the time you see this with just oranges. I ended up really loving the oranges, the red grapefruit, and the limes. The lemons didn’t seem different enough, unless you are just looking for different sizes. Slice them as thinly as possible and pat them dry on a dish towel. This is really the most labor intensive part, and I ended up with a few really bad slices, but overall this was still fairly quick. After you have patted them dry, lay them on parchment paper on your pan. Use a sieve or fine strainer to sprinkle powdered sugar on them. This is what will give them the stain glass effect. Place them in a 100 C oven (200 F) for 3 or more hours. You will want to flip them a couple of times during this time to make sure they dry out on both sides. The key here is that you don’t want to bake them, but rather dry them. This is by far the most time consuming part, but it requires very little hands on time. As long as you pick a day that you will be staying home it requires very little of your actual time. I was really pleasantly surprised at how they turned out. In the dark with Christmas lights shining behind them, they have a stained glass effect. I also used some of them to make a garland on our fireplace mantel. These are cheap decorations. The only cost is the fruit and citrus fruit is cheap right now. They have added a surprising festive look to our home that makes me happy.

Warning: Silas thought these tasted like candy…no joke. But I guess sprinkled with the sugar and dried it probably does kind of taste good. I haven’t tried them myself though. :-)

You could use these hot glue gunned to a homemade wreath. I’m planning to use the last few I have to make a couple of presents look extra festive with some greenery and a bow. There are so many ways to use this inexpensive decoration.

Comments

  1. What a cute idea!! Have a wonderful holiday season in your new home!

  2. Super cool! I have never seen anything like this. Thank you for sharing the beautiful pics and the how tos. I would never have guessed to use sugar. :o) Praying for you and new baby at this time.

  3. I LOVE this idea! And your tree and mantle look beautiful! I got those “warm Christmas fuzzies” when I saw the pics :-)

  4. These turned out so pretty! We use salt instead of sugar on ours. I love that you used a variety of citrus!

  5. Hey Johanna, Will these keep all season? I was going to try Martha Stewart’s version of dried fruit (she uses glitter without the sugar). I think the light might shine better through this version, though.

    • Yes, I definitely think they are going to last the entire season. As long as you dry them out really well (I.e. leave them in the oven long enough), they could even last another year if you had dry storage. It’s too humid here in Scotland to try that, but I know others have done that successfully….

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