The Most Unconventional Holiday Decorations

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Everyone’s used to more of the same when it comes to holiday aesthetic; you’ve got your christmas trees, menorahs, stockings, mistletoes, yada yada yada. But at BTRtoday we’re anything but ordinary, and our writers have some stories about the downright strangest festive decorations they’ve seen over the years.

My family is Jewish, but growing up my sister and I wanted to fit in with the rest of our class, so our parents indulged us and we celebrated Christmas as well as Hanukkah. We would go out into our woods and chop down a Charlie Brown tree that we’d mount in our living room, then would inevitably end up falling over at one point or another before the holidays were through. Once we reached a certain age, we decided that cutting down a tree was no longer necessary, but we still wanted to be festive one way or another! Since then, we’ve opted instead to throw a few ornaments on whatever houseplants we have lying around. Perhaps it doesn’t have quite the same effect as a large tree, but if your apartment is too small for a fir, I’d definitely recommend it! – Rebecca Chodorkoff


I WISH we had unconventional Christmas decorations. My mother’s house is directly out of a Homes and Gardens magazine. There is nothing quirky or weird in any of the nooks and crannies that she has utilitized (and there are a lot)… Actually, that may not be entirely true. She did proudly exhibit a foot-tall Santa statue that was handcarved, probably by some over-sized, over-zealous PTA mom; this Santa was proportioned like an anorexic body, not unlike Jack from Nightmare Before Christmas; its lips were painted a dark plum, almost black. It looked like a 3D representation of Marilyn Manson’s grandpa, in his red pajamas, of course. Mom thought it was cute. – Kimberly Ruth


A holiday aesthetic I have never understood is when winter season rolls around in the midwest and people adorn their cars to look like reindeers– the antlers protrude out of the windows and an obnoxious red ball sticks on the hood. It makes me wonder- are house decorations not enough? I guess not, because this tacky trend continually takes the roads by storm during the winter season annually. – Cassidy Colarik


My family are all basically hoarders so we’ve got stuff lying around from decades ago. One Halloween, when I was about nine or ten, we put up this stuffed black spider and some fake cobweb material in the corner on our dining room ceiling. We never took it down that year but just added a Santa hat. It’s still up there, wearing its little Santa hat. Sometimes we dust it, usually we don’t. So I suppose it’s not so much a holiday decoration as is it is a disgusting fake bug we never took down because we’re a bunch of lazy dicks. – Taia Handlin


I don’t understand why people use fake snow, cotton or white paint spray to decorate the inside of their houses for Christmas. Have you looked out the window? There’s snow out there. It snows outside, not inside. Stop wasting money. It’s winter, we get it. – Irina Groushevaia


I’ve really never been able to wrap my head around people who go out each holiday season and cover their houses and trees in multicolor string lights and pepper their yards with inflatable Santas and cartoon deer. Seriously, where do you find the time? How do you store all this stuff? And what’s the cutoff for leaving it up? I’ve seen decorations like these up into the beginning of February–do these decorators have any respect for dates? Do they own calendars? In all honesty, I’d probably leave them up all year round so when the calendar flips to December all I’d need to do is plug everything in. – Joe Virgillito