14 Cardboard Christmas Decorations To DIY Sustainably

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If you’re looking to ditch the plastic baubles this year, try making these beautiful Christmas decorations all made from recycled cardboard.

If you’re looking to decorate your home more sustainably this Christmas, then there’s no need to rush out and buy a load of new decorations or crafting supplies. Instead, simply head to your recycling bin and fish out that one material most of us have in abundance at this time of year – cardboard.

Whether it’s cardboard packaging, toilet roll tubes, or wrapping paper roll tubes, you can craft a whole manner of beautiful decorations from this humble recyclable material.

Need some inspiration? Here are 14 charming cardboard Christmas decorations that are super thrifty and super fun to make, whilst treading lightly on the planet.

Sustainably Stunning Cardboard Christmas Decorations To Make

Festive stars made from recycled materials with a blue text box that reads  sustainable cardboard Christmas decorations to make

Grab your scissors and your cardboard and let’s have a crafty Christmas:

1. Cardboard Scandi Baubles

festive star and gingerbread house baubles made from cardboard.

Becki Clark has a great tutorial for making these Scandi-inspired cardboard Christmas decorations. All you need is some cardboard, scissors, twine and a pen and you’re all set! These would look lovely hanging from your tree, or as pretty homemade gift tags.

2. Cardboard Christmas Trees

Christmas trees cut out from cardboard and adorned with cotton and buttons.

There’s no tutorial for these pretty cardboard Christmas trees that Wunschkind Herzkind Nervkind has made, but it seems very straightforward.

Simply gather some cardboard and cut out some simple Christmas tree shapes. Use an embroidery needle to pre-prick the holes and then use embroidery thread to fill it in, before glueing on buttons and any decorations you need.

3. Cardboard Stars

Festive stars made from recyclable materials

If you’re looking to make a festive garland using cardboard then try Cuckoo4Design. Here you’ll find handy templates to make these beautiful decorations that be strung into garlands, or used as oversized baubles on your Christmas tree.

4. Gingerbread Christmas Village

Cardboard Christmas village

Make a festive gingerbread village decoration from cardboard this Christmas, with this fun DIY from Jenni at The Bear & The Fox. It’s a great way to sustainably brighten up your mantlepiece, plus it packs away flat for future Christmases.

5. Toilet Roll Tube Christmas Trees

Cardboard toilet roll tube Christmas tree decorations

Even your old cardboard toilet roll tubes can be recycled into decorations this Christmas. Coley Kuper has an easy DIY to make these table or windowsill decorations, that would be incredibly fun for kids to make.

6. Toilet Roll Tube Snowflake

In keeping with the toilet roll tube theme, My Scandinavian Home has a great guide to making this beautiful festive snowflake. Needing just three toilet roll tubes, it’s a great way to use up that cardboard that would otherwise go to waste.

7. Cardboard Christmas Dioramas

Christmas scenes made from cardboard and jam jar lids

Make these pretty Christmas dioramas with this fun DIY from Cardboard Folk. All you need is a jam jar lid, some cardboard and a white pen, and you’ve got these unique decorations that will brighten up your home sustainably. They’d also make a lovely handmade Christmas gift idea.

8. Festive Table Centrepiece

Scandi style horse and trees decorations made from cardboard.

Need a decoration for your table? Don’t buy one – Emily Dawe has a great guide to making this festive scene entirely from cardboard. Emily has even made a template for you, to help you get the best results possible.

9. Cardboard Santa Garland

Santa garland next to wooden beads and sprigs of pine.

Atelier Ode_Desjardins has a wonderful DIY for these sweet Santa garlands. This would be a great crafty activity to get kids involved in this Christmas.

10. Recycled Cardboard Advent Calendar

Tree advent calendar made from cardboard

Most of the crafts I’ve shared have been simple enough that any crafting novice should be able to do. However, if you want to go big this Christmas then Marie Claire France has the mother of all decoration DIYs, with this festive scene made entirely from cardboard.

To add to the difficulty level, the tutorial is in French! If you’re up to the challenge, I’ve tried it with Google Translate and the instructions seem pretty clear.

11. Festive Cardboard Wreath

Person holding a festive wreath made from cardboard

For something a bit less complicated, and in English, Handy With Scissors has a great guide to making these sweet Christmas wreath decorations from cardboard. These can be customised in any way that you like to fit with your existing decor.

12. Wrapping Paper Tube Candles

Brightly coloured cardboard candles made from wrapping paper tubes.

If you have any cardboard tubes left over from gift wrapping presents, then don’t bin them. Handmade Charlotte has this cute DIY for making Christmas candles from them. These cardboard decorations would look lovely grouped together on your Christmas table or on your mantlepiece.

13. Toilet Roll Tube Stars

Cardboard bows made from toilet roll tubes

Sperenzien has cleverly made these pretty stars from toilet roll tubes. These would be lovely as tree decorations, or on gifts in place of plastic bows. The original guide is in German, but I’ve found a handy video on YouTube showing how it’s done:

YouTube video

14. Toilet Roll Tube Angels

Festive angels made from cut up toilet roll tubes.

Finally, Rebecca at the Austrian blog Sinnenrausch has made these lovely cardboard angel Christmas decorations from toilet roll tubes. As you might expect, the tutorial is in German, but Google Translate comes up pretty well!

Happy Christmas crafting! And for even more inspiration, check out these amazing zero-waste Christmas decorations you can make from paper, natural materials and other compostable and recyclable items.

You can also check out my big guide to having a sustainable Christmas, for more clever ideas on how to green the festive season.

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