Clever Ways to Decorate with Cranberries

From wreaths to table settings, you can add a seasonal touch of red to your holiday decorating scheme with cranberries. They're not just for recipes anymore.

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cranberry trees in bucket
Tiny Trees

    Position tiny trees in a bucket, and then fill with cranberries. For an extra touch, bend bits of wire as hooks for cranberry "ornaments" on mini trees.

Mantel Cranberries

    Spruce up your mantel with evergreen garlands and vases, or glass cylinders, with floating cranberries and candles.

Table Settings

    Set the table for an elegant gathering with cranberries strewn from centerpiece to place setting. Sprinkle cranberries into votive candleholders. Cut out paper circles and write each guest's name on a circle. Trim paper circles with red and add one to each votive for a creative place marker.

Cranberry Dressing

    Adorn the front entry with a snow-dusted frozen wreath. Pour 1 to 2 inches of water into the bottom of a fluted cake pan or gelatin mold. Fill with cranberries, freeze, then shake loose. Tie the wreath to the door or porch rail with a red woolen scarf, and tuck in fresh evergreen or holly branches.

Wrap-Around Wreath

    Wire red twig dogwood stems into a circle, letting some stems stick out. Pop fresh cranberries on the tips. Thread cranberries on a long string, looping it around the wreath. Finishing touches: silver ball ornaments and greenery.


    Wide candles take shelter inside glass vases one-quarter full of SnoWonder instant snow and topped with cranberries.

Hanging Topiary

    Draw attention upward with this inventive leaf-and-cranberry topiary. Cover a foam ball with leaves and stud it with cranberries. Add a ribbon, hang it up, and admire.

Crimson Centerpiece

    This simple centerpiece is easy to make and gorgeous to set out. Fill a ceramic dish with cranberries, and settle a single flower over evergreens in the middle.

Cranberry Cake Plate Tower

    Drop cranberries inside the hollow stems of graduated and stacked cake plates. Decorate with ornaments and tiny trees, and you have a festive, creative centerpiece.

Seasonal Bouquet

    Fill a vase half full of berries and fresh water and insert an arrangement, such as these roses and holly leaves. Add more water and cranberries to hide the stems.

Fruit Frugal

    Stretch your floral arrangement budget by adding in cheap, plentiful cranberries. Crab apples on skewers, delphiniums, cranberries, white calla lilies, and roses give this arrangement a fanciful look.

A Very Merry Cranberry

    Cranberries can be incorporated into dishes and drinks to be served, but they also make colorful decorations. Thread cranberries onto thin florist's wire to loop through the chandelier and put a layer of cranberries in the vase of your centerpiece. See the next two slides for detailed views of this table decor.


    A metal chandelier receives a warm holiday touch with cranberry garlands looped through it and dressed with evergreens. Add to the ambience of your dinner table by placing white, scent-free candles on top of the fixture. Add to the ambiance of your dinner table by placing white, scent-free candles on top of the fixture.

Cranberry Centerpiece

    It's easier to make than it looks. Start with an 8-inch-square clear glass vase. Cut a piece of floral foam to a size that lets a layer of cranberries fit between the foam and the vase. Cover with water. Into the foam, insert red roses, striped 'Hocus Pocus' roses, red tulips, gold-tipped cedar (all available from florists), and silvery ornaments. Thread cranberries on thin floral wire to loop over the arrangement.

Icy Elegance

    To make this wine chilling ring, use electrical tape to anchor an empty wine decanter in the center bucket. Fill the bucket with water and cranberries; some berries will sink and some will float, producing the rings. Place the bucket in the freezer. When the water is frozen solid, remove the empty decanter from the ice ring and place ring in a vintage ice bucket. Finally, decant a bottle of your favorite wine and enjoy.

Ice Chips

    Freeze cranberries with just enough water to cover them. When water is completely frozen, remove from tray, break into pieces, and add to your ice bucket.

Cookie Decorations

    A favorite holiday treat, shortbread is an easy and delicious pastry to serve to family and friends. Dot the dough with dried cranberries for a zingy Cranberry Shortbread. Fill bowls around the table with fresh cranberries and shortbread for festive decorations that are pretty enough to eat.

    Tip: Add cranberries to your favorite cookie dough for a tasty surprise. Re-create this table setting with the cookie of your choice.

Cranberry Crafts

    Try these very berry Christmas crafts.

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