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RV Decorating Ideas For The Holidays

Published on December 13th, 2022 by Scott and Van Russell

Ideas To Make Your RV Festive This Holiday Season

RV traveling this holiday season and looking to make your small space a bit more festive? RVing is a great way to see the country and spend time with family and friends, but it can be tricky to decorate for the holidays when you don’t have a lot of space. We have you covered! These small space RV decorating ideas will help you celebrate the holidays in style.

RV Holiday Decorating Can Be A Blast

You don’t have to skimp on the holiday cheer just because you are traveling in your RV this holiday season. In fact, decorating the RV can be even more fun than decorating in a home. It almost feels like (sticks-and-bricks) house decorations have to be a little more organized or formal. Many people keep holiday decorations within a color theme or set up in a certain way. Sometimes this feeling is from tradition or possibly because of entertaining holiday visitors. 

However, in an RV, it feels like all expectations are thrown out the door, and you can just have some fun with it! Anything goes in an RV, which is a freeing feeling, especially during a season that some may find a bit stressful. This is a great opportunity to let your creativity shine! Read on to find loads of fun RV decorating ideas. 

Christmas Tree Ideas For Your RV

One holiday decoration that many RVers struggle to fit in a small space is a Christmas tree. This seems to be the one piece of decor that everyone wants to bring along but struggles to find a place to put it. If you get creative with your space, you can absolutely fit a tree somewhere in your RV. Here are some great Christmas tree options.

a smart RV decorating idea is a tall and skinny Christmas tree that doesn't take much space like this one
Photo by Scott Russell

Go big but go skinny! Many RVs have great ceiling height but little available floor space. Pencil trees are tall and skinny, making a large decorating impact but don’t take up much space. A 7 1/2-tall pencil tree is a great RV option because it only takes up about 2 feet of floor space. This RV decorating idea takes advantage of the high ceilings common in many RVs. Don’t have tall ceilings in your RV? They make pencil trees of all sorts of heights to fit your space. Tall and skinny is the biggest decorating bang for your buck for many RVers looking for a Christmas tree.

Felt Christmas tree attached to mirror an in RV is another RV decorating idea
Photo by Scott Russell

Consider mini tabletop trees as RV decorating ideas. Trees don’t have to be huge to make your RV feel like a festive space. If you don’t have the floor space for even a pencil tree, then try a tabletop tree. Places in an RV that work great for mini trees are the kitchen table, side table, kitchen counter, coach dashboard, bedside table, bedroom dresser, or even next to the bathroom sink. If there is a space, you can stuff a little tree there!

Felt Christmas tree attached to mirror an in RV is another RV decorating idea
Photo by Scott Russell

What if you are in a campervan or have no space at all on the floor or tabletop for a tree? Get creative with your wall space to create a flat-wall Christmas tree. Create a large felt tree and attach felt ornaments as decor. Or put ribbon loops on a flat felt wall tree and hang ornaments on the loops. You can even use battery-operated mini or fairy lights. Pinterest is a great source of ideas for felt trees. To buy one that is already made, Etsy has options for purchase.

Another RV decorating idea for a wall tree is to secure a piece of garland to the wall and wind it back and forth, getting wider as you go down the wall to create the shape of a tree with the garland. Command hooks can be used to secure the garland to the wall. Once you have the tree shape made with the garland, you can decorate it with lights and hang ornaments from it. 

Don’t have any wall space to create a wall tree? Some RVs and vans don’t have any wall space available. Consider creating the wall tree on the inside of the door or on a closet mirror. Another possibility is to hang a wall tree from the edge of the RV slide molding or from a cabinet. There are many possibilities if you get creative in your small space!

No floor space, tabletop space, or wall space for a Christmas tree?

Why not put a tree outside at your RV campsite? Putting your Christmas tree outside allows other campers also to be able to enjoy your decor while freeing up your inside space. You can go as big as you want outside. Just be sure to use shatterproof ornaments and outdoor-rated lights, so your tree survives any weather. Also, secure it to a picnic table or stake it down to keep it from blowing over. And, of course, double-check that your campground/resort allows outdoor setups like this.

One last creative RV tree option is a pop-up garland tree. These lightweight trees fold completely flat and then pop up into spiral-shaped trees made of garland. You can easily move this lightweight tree and fold it up flat whenever you aren’t using it. It can work both inside and outside as RV decor. Since it weighs almost nothing, you can even set it on the furniture or in a chair and move it around as needed.

Other Indoor RV Decorating Ideas

A Christmas wreath, holiday lights and holiday sign hanging from RV cabinet
Photo by Scott Russell

Command hooks are always an RVer’s friend when it comes to everyday decor, but they really come in handy with RV decorating ideas for the holidays. Placing command hooks on the bottom side of the cabinets is a great way to hang a long run of holiday lights or garlands. You can also place command hooks on the top of the RV slide moldings to hang the decor. Another place to hang items is along the edge or from the bottom of the kitchen island if your RV has one. We use command hooks to hang our stockings from the front side of our RV island.

It’s also possible to skip having a Christmas tree altogether and decorate your RV with hanging lights and garlands. Using the tops of the slides creates a long area to hang garlands and lights. You can even hang ornaments off of garland in the same way you would decorate a Christmas tree. If you aren’t a fan of garland, you could also use colored tulle or Christmas decorative mesh with lights. Even simple crepe paper is an old-school decorating option.

Clings and decals can be a way to decorate an RV without taking up any space. Window clings can add a festive touch to windows and mirrors in your tiny RV home for the holidays. Wall decals can also be added to any flat surface in your RV, including doors, walls, and cabinets. Utilizing verticle surfaces is a great way to maximize RV space while still making an impact with your holiday decor.

Outdoor RV Decorating Ideas

holiday themed  inflatables like a Christmas tree and gingerbread man set up outside the RV
Photo by Scott Russell

Small touches outside can make your RV campsite space more festive. Simple ideas like adding a holiday tablecloth to your picnic table or a wreath on your RV door can make your outdoor space feel Christmas cozy. Some RVers enjoy outdoor plants for decor and choose to add poinsettias to tables or next to the RV stairs for a pop of color.

Or you could also go big outside by utilizing some items that store small but make a larger decorating impact. A popular big decorating item with RVers is inflatables. Inflatables can create enormous decorations while also folding down flat for storage when not in use. Another outdoor decor item that is small but makes a large impact is a projection machine. There are many options to create moving patterns or a fixed scene projection onto the side of your RV to add nighttime holiday spirit at your campsite.

Travel Day Tips For Holiday Decorations

It’s always a nice option to stay put in one RV location to settle in and really enjoy the holidays. Plus, staying in one campsite over the season allows you to set up shop and not worry about moving any decorations. Sometimes staying in one location over the holidays just isn’t an option. What do you do if you will often be traveling once you have decorated your RV for Christmas? With a little creativity, it’s not too bad to pack up and move with your Christmas decor. It’s a bit more work, but most RVers feel it is worth it to bring along their holiday decorations.

When you decorate the Christmas tree, it is helpful to only use shatterproof ornaments in case any fall off. You can also really crimp the ornament hooks tightly onto the branches. Some RVers actually wire ornaments to the tree branches or even use twisty ties or zip ties to help secure each one. Then on travel days, we wrap a large bedsheet around the Christmas tree and set it on our bed. Once we arrive, it’s easy to set it back in place and unwrap the sheet. Surprisingly, very few ornaments ever fall off in this process.

Besides utilizing the top of our bed space on travel days. We will also place decor in bags on top of our RV couch to travel. I will bring very fragile items like gingerbread houses with us and place in a bag on the floor of the truck. Normally, I don’t like adding additional items inside the truck for safety reasons, but we will do it temporarily just for the Christmas season.

RV Storage Tips For Holiday Decor

For RVers that own a home and travel over the holidays, storage of holiday decorations at home is probably not a deal breaker. However, finding storage for Christmas decorations can be a huge challenge for those who live in an RV or travel full-time. RV living space comes at a huge premium, and storing seasonal decor usually isn’t a priority.

An idea is to purchase an inexpensive Christmas tree each year and donate it to a charity after the season. Christmas trees can be too large to store all year in an RV. Also, consider buying cheap ornaments at the dollar store or a discount store to donate after Christmas. Making some ornaments each year from natural things you find on your travels, like painting pinecones or seashells, can be a fun tradition. Thrift stores can also be inexpensive places to find decor that you can donate again after the season.

Consider storing some of your family’s sentimental Christmas ornaments, decor, and books. When traveling with kids, it is nice to use a few familiar items year after year, and for our family, we will give up some storage space to make that happen. A great storage location for larger or heavier holiday items is under-the-bed storage. Lighter items can be stored in living room overhead cabinets. We have way too many decorations and tend to go a bit overboard, but it’s our favorite time of year!

Creativity Can Take Your RV Decorating Ideas a Long Way

Small-space RV decorating does not have to be difficult. With a little creativity, you can turn your RV into a festive and welcoming space for the holidays. These ideas should help you get started creating your own holiday decorations for your RV. So put up some lights, hang some stockings, and enjoy the season in your home away from home!

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