Carolina Beach-Themed Christmas Ornaments

I love beach-themed Christmas décor. Who am I kidding? I love beach-themed anything. I’m the girl with beach-themed waste receptacles, for goodness sake.

But there’s something about a decked-out, beach-themed Christmas tree in particular that just gives me that feeling of being somewhere different, somewhere unlike Chicago, my land of origin. Not that you can’t have a beach-themed Christmas tree in oh, say, Kansas or something. In fact, you probably should. But, you are probably less likely to have one. It certainly never dawned on me during my Windy City days. But there’s just an aura about beach-themed trees that just, well, just gets to me. In a really good way.

Alas, I do not have what anyone in the know would define as a beach-themed tree. Every year, I threaten LCB that I’m going to up and buy myself one.

But then I don’t. And clearly, this year will not be the year, because the new house continues to have enough intrinsic drama without throwing an arguably optional second tree into the mix. (You didn’t think I meant I was going to give up my original tree, decked out with the small people’s ornaments, did you?)

So instead, I get my beach on by incorporating a handful of beach-themed ornaments in with everything else non-beachy on my tree. I also live with three small people who have all gone through phases of what I’ll call ornament hoarding, where they suddenly lay claim to certain ornaments as theirs “because I want it to be” and then manhandle their ornaments in what appears to be an attempt to test exactly how much abuse an ornament can stand before cracking, shattering, or falling limply into an unrecognizable shape. So, I do not buy expensive or highly-breakable ornaments at this juncture in life. Someday, maybe, but for now, my ornaments (including all on this list) are all under $12.00, with most well under $10.00, and most are not overly delicate. It’s just one of those things I do because ultimately sleeping peacefully at night supersedes my desires for certain more expensive ornaments.

So, here’s my list of mostly child-friendly, moderately-priced, made or found in North or South Carolina beach-themed ornaments.

Exhibit A:

I found this sand dollar ornament years ago at the Charleston City Market, the famous marketplace in Charleston, SC where vendors of all sorts sell their crafts and wares. In fact, I liked it so much, I bought two more as gifts. The picture on the sand dollar is of some of the houses along The Battery, a beautiful stretch of antebellum homes in Charleston, South Carolina.

Exhibit B:

I picked this ornament up at a craft fair last year. My only debate was the color scheme to choose for my palm tree, because North Carolina artist Jann Tayloe ( offered numerous choices in color as well as many other shapes and sizes for her ornaments. In retrospect, I could have easily purchased all of them and built a tree around it.

Exhibit C:

Years ago, I purchased this ornament at a shop called Christmas Mouse in Nags Head on the Outer Banks. They had several different lighthouses and styles to choose from, as well as many other beach-themed ornaments. It’s just a fun ornament that my kids really like.

Exhibit D, E & F:

Near Topsail Island in North Carolina, there’s a small gift shop called Starfish that has a collection of beach-themed ornaments. When I was there, I purchased several, but these are a couple that are very kid-friendly.

I have this thing about sea glass, so this one’s for me. It goes up a little higher on the tree than the sea turtle and the sea horse. I like to pretend to myself that I made it, but truthfully, if I had made it, it would have looked more like a preschool craft. At best.

Getting out all of my ornaments this week, including the ones just mentioned, got me in the Christmas mood in a major way. It also got me thinking about what else is out there in the Carolinas, so I did a little research, and came up with these.

Exhibit G:

I love these sea horses from The Cotton Gin, with three locations on the Outer Banks. If you like these and want to build on that theme, they have other similar beach-themed ornaments, including fish, crabs, dolphins, mermaids, and boats.

Exhibit H:

Okay, the small people would love these. I’m almost afraid to show them these, because they may just decide they want to make their own with some of our shells, and I’ve mentioned my craftlessness on more than just this particular post. It haunts me folks, it really does. So, it’s a good thing that there are people out there like the ones at, who have been blessed with what I have not.

Exhibit I, J & K: has some great choices right now, if you can snag them before someone else.

This starfish has beautiful coloring.

These beach angels would also be appealing to children. Warning: They might inspire DIY crafting requests. I’m just saying.

I love the colors and the picture on this one.

And isn’t this gorgeous? It’s made by South Carolinians from, located near Myrtle Beach. Guess where it’s hanging right now? It’s on the White House Christmas Tree. Maybe they have a replica in the making.

Well, there you have my list of beach-themed ornaments from the Carolinas. I’ll end on this note, courtesy of the folks at Starfish.

Have a great weekend everyone, filled with the anticipation of the season.

6 Comment

  1. I’m loving all the beachy ornaments!! Yet I don’t have any. Something wrong with that picture?! Well, I’m using my beach shells again this year…., oh, I bought one kitschy ship wheel ornament in NYC. Every collection starts with one piece, right.

    1. Yes, but if I did what you do, it would be impossible to decide which ones to actually end up using personally. And I love some of the trees that use shells, starfish, sand dollars, etc along with Caribbean blues and greens in the trim. Tonight, my project is to try to use my glass cake platter, some plain ornaments, ribbon, and a couple of starfish and maybe some shells to create a centerpiece for my table. I’ve seen it done before without the beach theme, so I’m going to try my highly unskilled hands at it and see what happens.

  2. Monica says: Reply

    OK–I love/want them all!!
    We have a few beach-themed ornaments…but mixed in with our own childhood keepsakes, and a smattering of everything else!
    My folks will be here next week to stay in their beach condo for the holidays and I love to decorate a small tree before they arrive. Each year I do something different, but this year I found someone who makes darling miniature fish out of sea glass in all shades of blues and greens. I’m thinking of using that theme. Maybe I’ll share pictures too! That was really fun, thanks!

    1. You could do just about anything to sea glass, and I would love it. I love the idea of a tree decked out in sea glass ornaments. And wow, that’s impressive that you try something different on the tree for your parents every year! It’s a great idea. I’d love to see pictures when you are done!

  3. I really love seeing other’s Christmas ornaments. Your favorites are so beautiful and unique. My favorite ornaments are the ones my grandma gave us every year for Christmas because they hold such fond memories. My new favorites are the ridiculous spray-painted macaroni ornaments (and the like) that my boys have made over the years.

    1. Isn’t it funny how your perspective changes on those things after having kids? I remember seeing friends’ trees before I had kids and wondering if looking at those ornaments ever “got to them.” What complete and utter nonsense it was to ever think that!

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