Kwanzaa Inspiration

Traditional Kwanzaa candles

Kwanzaa is a yearly celebration that begins on December 26 on an annual basis, honoring African culture and providing many with a reason to celebrate. For that reason, we’ve gathered some of our favorite Kwanzaa inspiration to help you decorate for this festive time in order to really get into the spirit and to even try something new!

Keep It Classic
Traditional Kwanzaa candles on a kinara

Kwanzaa is traditionally celebrated with a row of seven lit candles on a candle holder called a kinara. Having these candles in your home during this time of year signifies your dedication to the holiday and enhances the celebration. They are lit in a specific order to represent the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa.

The Colors of the Season
A vase of red roses

Enjoy the meaningful and festive colors of Kwanzaa in your decor this year to really ramp up the Kwanzaa spirit and create a beautiful and meaningful display in your home. The colors to be celebrated with are red, black, and green. Incorporate these vibrant hues into the decor palette for the season by adding beautiful florals to your home, hanging string lights in these hues, or by adding linens and accents to your home in these colors. It’s especially meaningful to add these colors via plants, as the green color that represents the holiday stands for the fertile land of Africa.

Play into the Symbolism
Corn on the cob

The holiday of Kwanzaa has many symbols associated with it, which all make for wonderful inspirational decor pieces at this time of year. For instance, corn ears, referred to with Kwanzaa as vibunzi, are symbolic to this special time of year. These ears are traditionally placed on the mkeka for each child present. A Mkeka is a mat, and usually for Kwanzaa they are made from straw or African cloth. These are meant to symbolize the foundation upon which communities are built. Use these symbols to add extra meaning and beautiful aesthetic to your home at this special time of year.

Put Together a Beautiful Plate
Fruits, nuts, and vegetables on a table

Just like there are special symbols associated with the holiday, there are several foods that are symbolic to the holiday as well. These include fruits, nuts, and vegetables. The reason they are associated with Kwanzaa is because these accoutrements remind those participating in the holiday of the foods and harvest items that nourished the people of Africa. During holiday celebrations, put together a beautiful feast of these foods to both seamlessly entertain guests and appreciate the symbolism and what the holiday stands for. You can really tap into your creativity here, putting together boards of these foods in beautiful displays, enhancing your celebration.

Work in Increments of Seven
Work in Increments of Seven

The number seven is symbolic to the holiday, which works to provide inspiration in setting up your home to celebrate the season. It’s meaningful due to its seven principles and seven symbols of the holiday, used to inspire the values associated with the culture. There are also seven days of this holiday, further perpetuating the symbol. In decorating your home, play on this number by putting out groupings of seven candles or other decor items.

Appreciate Togetherness
A rustic welcome sign hanging outside a home

One of the tenets of Kwanzaa revolves around the idea of unity. The word umoja means unity, signifying the more than 2,000 languages spoken in Africa.  Kwanzaa uses one of these, Swahili, spoken by millions of Africans across the world. At this special time of togetherness, encourage time spent among family friends to enjoy the season together. While this can be done verbally, also do it with the decor of your home. Include welcome signs or those that signify love, friendship, and family as the season is celebrated joyfully. These decor pieces will serve as a reminder of how important togetherness is in celebrating Kwanzaa.

A happy family sitting on a couch in front of a fireplace

These are just some of the fun and festive ways to ready your home to celebrate a joyous and exciting time of year. Decorating makes the season more fun and memorable for the whole family, especially when the pieces you choose signify something special about the season.