In modern times, when obtaining an orange, year-round, is as easy as making a quick trip to the grocery store, we may forget that fresh citrus was once a distinctly wintry treat. In the days before artificial lighting, of short days and cold nights, those colorful, sweet-smelling citrus fruits must've seemed like little balls of sunshine. So it's no surprise, really, that there's a close association between citrus and Christmas decor, particularly of the more traditional kind. Citrus at Christmas is starting to enjoy great popularity once again, and for good reason—it's beautiful, it's inexpensive, and it will make your home smell great.
Above: Ornaments made from dried citrus feel so modern and pretty — and definitely budget-friendly. Find out how to make them on A Beautiful Mess.
Another application of dried orange slices is to make a simple garland for either your tree or fireplace mantel. The pairing here by Homesong of citrus and jingle bells is festive yet simple enough to not be OTT.
Oranges are a gorgeous addition to this eucalyptus wreath from Louise Roe. (A eucalyptus wreath, she warns, will only last a couple of days, but the effect would be just as nice with traditional—or faux—greenery.)
This tree from HGTV is fully decked out in edible goodness—orange slices and cranberry garland.
Orange pomanders, carved in unusual patterns, make for an unexpected and beautiful holiday centerpiece in this photo from Trendenser.
In the case of this garland from Sugar and Cloth, adding citrus to the mix is as easy as just placing the fruits on the mantel.
This lemon wreath comes from the Etsy shop De La Fleur. I imagine that all this sunny citrus makes for a particularly bright spot on a winter day.
This citrus garland, for which you can find the full instructions at Martha Stewart, looks to be a bit of an ambitious project. The good news is that, when the season is over, instead of throwing everything away, you can just make a (whole, whole lot of) marmalade or juice.
Planning a holiday dinner? Candles, olive branches and citrus make for a stylish and modern centerpiece, as seen on Honestly Yum.
This gorgeous centerpiece, from BHG, is made from evergreen sprigs mixed with oranges and lemons. (The oranges are studded with cloves, which may remind you of the orange pomanders you made in elementary school.)
Head over to Poppytalk to get the DIY instructions for this rosemary and citrus holiday wreath.
Even the bar cart deserves a little festivity. This citrus-bedecked swag fancies up a drink station from Munster Rose.
Finally, a quick project to turn a clementine into a candle using only a knife and some olive oil. Find out easy tutorial here.