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Shells and Seaside Ornaments - Christmas for Ocean lovers

Updated on August 15, 2012

Seashell on the beach

A seashell is washed up on the beach.
A seashell is washed up on the beach. | Source

Seaside Memories

Childhood vacations at the beach near Asbury Park, NJ were the beginning of my love affair with the seaside. There were lazy days spent lying on the beach or walking in the edge of the surf collecting shells. Some days, spent endlessly riding the waves, I felt part of the ocean. At night I would close my eyes and feel the waves rocking me to sleep. The smell of salty air embedded itself so deeply in my brain so that I smell the salt air when I look at photographs of the sea.

Now, many beaches and many years later, the smell of salt air and the sound of crashing waves always makes me happy. In lieu of actually being at the beach, I have a scattering of seashells around my house, shells collected from beaches on the Atlantic to the Pacific coasts. There are little bowls of shells in every room. A big basket of shells in the living room holds a collection of broken shells that I love. Excess shells make their way out the front door to decorate the flower boxes on my front porch.


Lighthouses symbolize the beach

Ocaracoke lighthouse, North Carolina
Ocaracoke lighthouse, North Carolina | Source

Seashells bring back beach vacation memories

You don’t have to grow up at the seaside to fall in love with beaches. Spending a memorable vacation at the beach can do it, and you’ll want to keep those wonderful memories fresh. One way to do that is to have mementos of the seaside around you.

Add seashells and seaside ornaments to your Christmas tree

Seaside themes are sure to remind you of your favorite beaches. Add some seaside ornaments to your Christmas tree in memory of a wonderful summer vacation or go all out by decorating your entire home in a seaside theme. Perhaps you’ll find an ornament here that will bring back memories of your favorite beach spot, or of a wonderful vacation.

Shell Ornaments for your tree

How many hours have you spent beach combing and picking up pretty shells on the beach? If you have baskets of shells in your home to remind you of beach combing days, you'll love seeing these Pearlized sea shell ornaments on your Christmas tree. Add miniature white or colored lights that will reflect off the ornaments for a beautiful beach theme.


For an elegant touch, add some of these hand blown glass shell ornaments to your tree or mantle. These will also make a unique gift for someone special who loves the seaside.


What could be more authentic than some of these Mexican seashell ornaments made of real shells? Wouldn't they be perfect to add to your Christmas wreath?




If you don't want to make your own, you can purchase a ready made seashell wreath complete with shells and starfish.

Combine Fish Ornaments with Shell Ornaments

Combine colorful fish ornaments with shell ornaments for a seaside theme. Fish ornaments range from colorful unbreakable ornaments to sparkly sequined fish that will catch the lights of your Christmas tree.

Mix fish ornaments with shells and lighthouses on your tree, or add them to wreaths. These cute tropical fish can also be used to decorate gifts for the fishermen in your life!

Seaside and beach scenes ornaments

Keep memories of that wonderful seaside vacation alive by hanging one of these Hallmark seaside scene ornaments on your tree. Or give one to each family member as a memento of a summer at the beach.

Seashell Christmas Lights

Add a unique look to your mantle or tree with these unusual seashell Christmas lights.

Choose strands of tiny conch shells or tropical shells to complete the seaside theme on your tree. Or string a set of seashell lights along a shelf or mantle decorated with mementos of your beach vacation.

Surfing Santas and Adirondack Beach Chairs

We love to watch the surfers riding the waves near Cape Hatteras lighthouse. Although its much too cold for surfing in December, the whimsical Santa On a Surfboard ornament will surely appeal to the surfer on your gift list and serve as a lasting memory of that wonderful summer on the beach.

Beach houses and guest houses with comfortable Adirondack chairs on their porches overlooking the beach are icons of a seaside vacation. Perhaps the Adirondack Beach Chair ornament will bring back memories of those lazy days spent reading on the beach or on the veranda overlooking the water.


Know someone who loves lighthouses?

Lighthouses remind me of summers spent on the Outer Banks where one can walk up the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse for a fabulous view of Hatteras Island. These Lighthouse ornaments also bring to mind lighthouses on The great Lakes and the Pacific Northwest where we spent some incredible vacations.


Perhaps you have a special memory of a lighthouse that you visited while on vacation? Or maybe you know someone who loves lighthouses and collects them. They are sure to love a Lighthouse Ornament as a stocking stuffer or a special decoration on their gift box.


You may even want to splurge and get them a Solar Powered Garden Lighthouse for their flower bed or garden! The three foot tall solar powered garden lighthouses will send their beam through the night for up to 10 hours - no wires or installation required! Just stand them where they will get some sunshine during the day for hours of light after dark.

Lasting Memories of the Seaside

Whether you decide on seashells or lighthouses for your tree, or decorate your Christmas door wreath in a seaside theme, these little mementos can be a pleasant reminder of your seaside vacation. It will be even more fun to share them with the people who shared the good times with you! Have a very Happy Holiday!


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    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Brett.Tesol - Wherever you are in the world, spending an afternoon beachcombing is one of the most enjoyable activities - and one of my favorite! Thanks for stopping by to comment and for sharing!

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Tesol 

      6 years ago from Asia

      Living in Thailand, I see some wonderful shells along the cost and it can make for a lazy afternoon with the partner just strolling and collecting a few.

      Thanks for SHARING.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Hi Gail, It pleases me to think that we might have some common experiences. Wouldn't it be funny to learn that we were both walking on the boardwalk or enjoying the same beach sometime back then? Thanks for stopping by to read and comment!

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 

      6 years ago from South Carolina

      I missed this hub when it first came out but am bookmarking it for future reference. As you know, I love anything reminiscent of the sea.

      I, too, have fond memories of the Jersey Shore as a child and teenager, including Asbury Park.

      Voted up, useful, awesome and interesting.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Hi Peggy,

      Florida is a great place for finding seashells as well as seaside themed ornaments and decorations. Giving some of your shell wreaths away as gifts gives you a great excuse to pick up more shells next time you are at the beach, doesn't it? :) Thanks for stopping by to comment. Have a great Christmas!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Hi Stephanie,

      I actually made several seashell wreaths from shells that I picked up off of beaches in Florida. Have given most of them away as gifts but still have a heart shaped one in a closet at the moment. Like you...I love seashells and I would continue to pick them up off of beaches, broken or not if I had the chance. They are all beautiful. Great hub!

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Hi Denise, No matter how many shells I have, I can never resist picking up just one more! I too love the shell wreaths that I see in shops around North Carolina and I've thought it would be fun to revamp some of my old wreaths by adding shell and seaside themed ornaments. Thanks for commenting!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 

      6 years ago from North Carolina

      Stephanie-I love the hub! I'm like you, I can't get enough of the sea and its treasures. I have a jar of shells in my living room and several scattered around the house.

      I was recently at a dr's visit and they had a shell adorned wreath which caught my eye. I was thinking this would make a great hub, so I'm glad that you did the write up. Wonderful.

    • starstream profile image

      Dreamer at heart 

      6 years ago from Northern California

      I enjoy collecting seashells too. I never have made an ornament out of one though.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Florida, with all of it's beautiful coastal areas, is a perfect place to carry out your seaside themed Christmas! I'm sure that you will have a great selection of seashell ornaments and tropical fish ornaments from which to choose. Have fun with it!

    • gryphin423 profile image

      gryphin423 

      6 years ago from Florida

      As a Floridian I would love to do a seashell themed tree! Great hub, thanks Stephanie!

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Hi StephHicks, I think a seashell themed Christmas Tree for a beach house is a wonderful idea! I hope you find just the right things for your husband's grandmother. Thanks for the comments and the votes!

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      JoanWhetzel - I love having seashells around my home and like to use lighthouse ornaments and figurines for decoration. They do make nice gifts.

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Hicks 

      6 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      Beautiful ideas! My husband's grandmother has a beach house, and for years we always gave her seashell-inspired items. I think it would be lovely to visit the beach house, put up a small tree and decorate it with seashell ornaments. Rated up across the board!

    • profile image

      Joan Whetzel 

      6 years ago

      Thanks for the idea. I was looking for one more present and coming up short. I have plenty of seashells I could use for just such a gift idea. Thanks.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile imageAUTHOR

      Stephanie Henkel 

      6 years ago from USA

      Hi Leahlefler, Fish and seashell ornaments are perfect reminders of those special seaside vacations! I'm sure you'll love your trip to Myrtle Beach - there's so much to see and do there!

    • leahlefler profile image

      Leah Lefler 

      6 years ago from Western New York

      Oh, Stephanie, I love our shell ornaments on our tree. We have a gorgeous set of fish and seashell ornaments (some are Department 56, the others were purchased in Hawaii). This hub makes me excited for our upcoming trip to Myrtle Beach!

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