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Kwanzaa is a reminder that good things happen around a table—joy, prosperity, warmth, and community. Instilling a sense of cultural appreciation, the seven-day African-American holiday is celebrated from December 26 to January 1. During the festivities, many friends and families come together to honor their culture and show respect for their heritage.
Each day of the celebrations corresponds to the seven principles of Kwanzaa, the Nguzo Saba: Umoja, Kujichagulia, Ujima, Ujamaa, Nia, Kuumba, and Imani. The final day of Kwanzaa includes hosting a karamu (a feast) consisting of African food, guests wearing traditional clothing, and loved ones exchanging gifts. The only thing that can make the festivities better? Kwanzaa decorations.
Where To Buy Kwanzaa Decorations
We have Black-owned businesses to thank for providing Kwanzaa wreaths, table displays, and many other decorations to African-American homes for the seven-day cultural holiday.
Malik Books, Gifts, and Calendars has more than enough Kwanzaa kinara sets and home decor to brighten up your house while you honor your African-American heritage. For wall plaques, kitchen accessories, pillow covers, glass sets, and Kwanzaa cards, African American Expressions is your go-to store.
Add unique accents to your home with Ananse Village’s beads, baskets, throw blankets, and rare finds like vintage wood containers, Benin Bronzes, and Yoruba Art. Any item used as a Kwanzaa decoration from Africa and Beyond will blow your guests’ minds—furniture, textiles, wall art, dinnerware, ceramics, beadwork, and even musical instruments are available.
Exchanging gifts on Kwanzaa is just as important as decorating your house. So, while you’re browsing for Kwanzaa decorations, you may as well buy a few educational gifts for the younger generation. Eso Won Books has countless novels by California Black writers that everyone loves. Simply Wholesome, Shades of Afrika, and Sankofa African Arts and Jewelry are gold mines when it comes to both Kwanzaa decorations and gifts.
DIY Kwanzaa Decorations Ideas You’ll Love
If you enjoy DIY, you can make your own Kwanzaa holiday decorations, too. DIY Kwanzaa decorations show that you invested your time and energy into transforming your home for the African-American cultural festivities; any handmade item around the house is highly encouraged. Illuminate your house with the mishumaa saba (the seven candles representing the Nguzo Saba) and incorporate traditional symbols to commemorate your roots. Make the week-long cultural holiday even more special with the DIY decor you create with the whole family. From ornaments to centerpieces, here are Kwanzaa decorations that’ll brighten up your home for the festivities.
Red, green, and black ribbons
Red, green, and black ornaments
1. Make one bow with each of the red, green, and black ribbons.
2. Wrap the ribbons around the wreath. Make sure you don’t fully cover the wreath, though.
3. Using a glue gun, attach the bows onto the wreath at random.
4. Place one red, green, and black ornament under each bow.
5. Make a large bow with the golden ribbon and attach it to the center of your Kwanzaa wreath.
6. Hang your DIY Kwanzaa wreath wherever you’d like or gift it during the zawadi (handmade Kwanzaa gift exchange) at the karamu.
Kwanzaa Door Decorations
Kwanzaa Wooden Tags
2 pieces plywood, 18x7 inch
“Happy Kwanzaa” printout
Red, black, and green acrylic paint
Clear poly spray
1. Drill a hole in the top center of each plywood.
2. Print out “Happy Kwanzaa” large enough so each word fits the plywood. Place each word on each piece of plywood, and trace the letters onto the wood with heavy pressure.
3. Use red, black, and green acrylic paint to color in the letters.
4. Cover plywood pieces with clear poly spray to protect from harsh weather.
5. Insert the rope into the drilled holes on the top of the wooden tags, and tie a knot.
6. Hang your Kwanzaa door decoration on your front door to welcome your guests with warm wishes.
Kwanzaa Table Displays
DIY Dried Corn Table Display
Small ornamental corns
Red, black, and green pillar candles (or battery-operated candles)
1. Remove husks from the ornamental corns.
2. Attach ornamental corns to the colorful pillar candles using a glue gun. (You can also replace the pillar candles with battery-operated ones for safety reasons.)
3. Make multiple corn table displays following the same instructions. Create as many as you desire or enough to light up your living space.
4. Let the Kwanzaa table displays illuminate the karamu on the final night of the festivities.
DIY Napkin Ring
Red, black, and green beads
1. Take the stretchy string and arrange the beads in the following sequence: three green beads, one black bead, three red beads.
2. Replace one of the black beads with a black tassel.
3. Once you reach your desired napkin ring size, tie a tight knot, and cut off the ends of the string.
4. Follow the same instructions and make as many napkin rings as you need.
5. Brighten up your home with these unique Kwanzaa table displays.
Kwanzaa Tree Ornaments
Green and red papers
Green and red plain ornaments
1. Cut out little rectangles from the green and red papers, making them small enough to be glued to the ornaments and large enough to write on.
2. Use a black Sharpie to write down the seven principles of the Nguzo Saba as well as inspiring, uplifting Kwanzaa wishes.
3. Glue the red paper pieces on the green ornaments and the green paper pieces on the red ornaments.
4. Place the Kwanzaa tree ornaments with the wishes on the tree, and gradually add the Nguzo Saba principles on each corresponding day of the holiday.
Kwanzaa Outdoor Decorations
DIY Wooden Kwanzaa Flag
Red, black, green, and white acrylic paint
Paintbrushes of different sizes
Clear poly spray
1. Use a ruler and a pencil to section out three parts for each color of the Kwanzaa flag.
2. Paint the red and green sections of the flag first, and the middle black one last. Make sure the red and green painted sections are dry before proceeding with the black paint.
3. Once dried, trace the words “Happy Kwanzaa” onto the middle of the flag. Then, fill in the words using white acrylic paint.
4. Write out the seven principles of the Nguzo Saba with a pencil around the edges of the flag.
5. Paint the principles with black and white acrylic paint and leave to dry.
6. Seal the wooden flag with clear poly spray to protect it from moisture.
7. Place your Kwanzaa outdoor decoration on your front porch to warmly greet your guests.
May you enjoy peace, love, and unity this Kwanzaa. We hope you enjoy each of the seven days of this beautiful cultural holiday.
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