How to Make a Danish Orange with Cloves Decoration

In Denmark, it’s tradition to hang oranges studded with cloves and tied with red silk ribbons in the windows of every room during the Christmas season. It smells wonderful and looks so warm and inviting.

This is an excellent craft to do with your kids. The emphasis is very decidedly not on perfection and it is one way of incorporating hygge into your holiday preparations. Take your time, enjoy some hot chocolate and cookies with Christmas carols and songs playing in the background. This will be something your kids will remember as they grow up and likely do with their kids.

What you need:

As many oranges as youd like to make. Choose navel oranges with thick skin
Whole cloves
Red silk ribbon. Available on Amazon or in craft stores

How to make the orange

1. Cut a piece of ribbon long enough to go around the orange twice, with enough left over to hang over a curtain rod or on a nail.

2. Place the midpoint of the ribbon on the navel and wrap it around the orange, meeting at the other end, crossing and looping back to the navel. Tie a double knot tightly. If your kids are younger, you may want to do this for them, using their finger to hold the first knot in place. As they get older, teach them how to do it themselves.

3. Place cloves in different patterns in each of the four fields created by the ribbon. Start by placing a clove in each of the corners at the top and bottom to hold the ribbon in place. After that, you can do what you want — use as many or as few cloves as you like, although I recommend a fair bit. It makes for a stronger scent. If your children complain about it hurting their fingers, tell them the story about how sometimes, a little bit of pain can create something beautiful.

4. If you have curtain rods, lead the two ends of ribbon on either side of the curtain rod and tie a knot and a bow at the top. This does involve standing on a step stool, so please be careful. If you don’t have curtain rods (or don’t like standing on step stools), tie the two ends in a double knot and add a bow, then hang it anywhere there’s room. A nail, a hook, a lamp, or a sturdy plant.

And enjoy the smell every time you walk by!



Donna said…
Interesting. We did this in my household as a child as well (lo those many decades ago!). I'm guessing it came from my mother, who's heritage was mostly German with a little English thrown in; but perhaps from my grandmother who was Swedish. I haven't done it for decades. Maybe time to start a new/old tradition!
Rose said…
I did this with my daughters when they were young! Thanks for the reminder. They are both visiting right now so maybe we can do this again, but even if they don't, I will! I love natural smells and decorations like this.
D.M. said…
Lene! This post and video make me so happy. Thanks for sharing!

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