By Emily VanSchmus and Kim Hutchison
December 09, 2020
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This season, deck the halls (or your front porch) with a group of festive holiday gnomes. Gnomes have been a classic Christmas decor trend for centuries and while they've always been popular, we've been seeing the bearded figures popping up even more this year.

To decorate your Christmas front porch with a few gnomes of your own, we'll show you how to make the figures with just a few inexpensive materials. You can have a whole group of them finished in an afternoon, so you'll be decorating for the season in no time.

gnome porch decorations
Credit: Dera Burreson

How to Make a Gnome Porch Decoration

Supplies Needed

  • Plastic pots (various sizes) 
  • Hot glue/glue gun
  • Sheet moss
  • Scissors
  • Assorted faux greens 
  • Wool dryer ball
  • Faux berries
  • 3 22-inch dowels
  • Zip tie
  • Fluffy white fleece 
  • 1-yard fluffy fleece fabric

Step-by-Step Directions

Follow these easy how-to instructions to make your own porch gnome. You should be able to complete the Christmas craft project in under an hour.

Step 1: Stack Pots

Each gnome starts with a plastic gardening pot, so the first thing to do is decide how many gnomes you want to make, and how large you want them to be. We used an 8-inch pot ($8, Target) stacked on top of a 12-inch pot ($6, The Home Depot) for a tall gnome and just one 12-inch pot for the shorter gnome. If you’re stacking pots, place them open side down and use hot glue to glue the small pot to the large pot. Let the glue dry completely.

Step 2: Attach Moss

Once you’ve prepped the pots, glue rolled sheet moss on to the pots. Start with a 14 x 48-inch sheet of moss and cut into three long strips. Then, cut each strip into 14-inch-long sections. Starting at the base of the bottom pot, use hot glue and a glue gun ($11, Target) to glue the strips vertically to the pots; there will be approximately 5 inches not covered at the top. Glue the strips so that they slightly overlap on the sides until the entire body of the pot is covered.

Step 3: Add a Greenery Beard

Next, trim several stems of faux greenery (we used flocked greenery to make the beard appear white) and hot glue them to the front of the pot to make a beard shape. Once you’ve glued the greenery down, trim around the edges as necessary. When the beard is complete, hot glue a wool dryer ball directly above the beard (this creates the gnome's nose) and use faux berries to accessorize the beard for a more festive look.

Step 4: Form the Hat Structure

To form a structure for the gnome's hat, use a zip tie to attach three 22-inch dowel rods together at one end, forming a tripod shape. Place the end of each of the dowels into the pot’s drainage holes, so that the wide part of the tripod is at the bottom and the zip-tied ends are at the top. If your pot doesn’t have drainage holes, you can simply secure the ends of the dowels to the top of the pot with hot glue.

Step 5: Add the Hat

To make the signature tall, pointy hat for your gnome, start with a 27 x 27-inch square of fleece fabric. Fold the square in half and make a diagonal cut from the inner folded edge to the outer open edge. Hot glue the right sides of fabric together at the cut seam and let the glue dry. Then, turn the fabric right-side-out and place it over the dowels to create a hat.

Step 6: Add Arms

To give your little gnome arms, wrap two 10-inch sections of dowel rods in fleece and secure the fabric with hot glue. Cut a small piece of fluffy white fleece to form the cuff of each sleeve and glue these to each dowel. Then attach the fleece-covered arms to the gnome’s body using hot glue. Add any other embellishments you like, then place the friendly decoration on your front porch. We recommend displaying the gnome in a dry, covered area to protect it from winter weather extremes.


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