How to hang a garland in a small space

Easy ways to hang a garland without damaging your walls

A Christmas garland on a fireplace beside a Christmas tree
(Image credit: Getty Images)

In the process of decorating your home for Christmas but struggling to decide how to hang a garland in a small space? Whether you’re living in a dorm room or a teeny tiny first apartment, you’ll want to ensure that you know all of the best hacks for hanging a garland in a confined space, without damaging the walls, mantel, or woodwork. 

Admittedly, knowing how to hang a garland in a small space can be a little more challenging than you might think, especially when it’s a rented property and you know that one wrong move could cost you your security deposit. 

The reality is that whatever your approach to combining a garland into your Christmas decoration ideas, it’s not always easy to know the best approach to a secure and sturdy hanging process. The good news is that if you’re smart about your approach to hanging a garland in your space, you can ensure that your Christmas decor looks good, is easy to hang, and doesn’t damage the walls.  

How to hang a garland in a small space

Whether your garland has to fit into a specific Christmas color scheme or you’re planning the rest of your Christmas decorations around your garland, you’ll want to ensure that you know how to hang a garland in a small space without causing any damage. The question is: what are the best hacks for easily hanging a garland in a small space? 

1. Use self-adhesive hooks to prevent damage to walls

To avoid causing damage to walls, using easy-to-remove self-adhesive hooks are a great option for hanging a garland with at Christmas — or any other time of the year, for that matter. 

When choosing hooks to hang your Garland from, Emily Lambe, deputy editor, says: “Garlands can be surprisingly heavy, so it’s important to make sure that you’re choosing hooks that are designed to support the weight, like these extra large Command hooks from Amazon.”

Emily Lambe
Emily Lambe

Emily Lambe is the deputy digital editor at Real Homes. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Rochester Institute of Technology and has been writing ever since. Emily writes about all things decor, fragrance, organization, and other home essentials. 

2. Give zip ties a try

Christmas garland on staircase

(Image credit: Getty Images)

For creating the aesthetic look of a garland that looks naturally draped, zip ties can work perfectly. 

“Ensure that any zip ties you use are evenly spaced and that there’s enough of the garland between each zip tie,” says content director, Lucy Searle. 

To make the zip ties less visible, opt for clear zip ties (like these clear zip ties from Amazon) rather than colored ties. To further camouflage the ties, strategically place the garland branches or add ribbon strings, berries, or pine cones to the display. 

Lucy Searle
Lucy Searle

Lucy Searle has written about interiors, property, and gardens for over 30 years. Lucy is now Content Director across Homes & Gardens, Woman & Home, Real Homes, and Ideal Home. Lucy is a serial renovator and also owns rental properties in the UK and Europe, so brings first-hand knowledge to the subjects she oversees.

3. Use garden twine to prevent damage to a banister

If you’re keen to display a festive garland along your banister, Searle advises that it’s best to use thicker garden twine to prevent damage to the wood. 

She explains: “Using garden twine creates a strong hold without causing visible damage to the banister’s surface, it also blends in easily to the banister, which is an added bonus”. 

4. Utilize the fixtures

Garland on fireplace

(Image credit: Getty Images)

A great hack for easier garland hanging is to use the fixtures to hang a garland from, whether this is the light fixtures or the shelving it doesn’t matter. 

For easier securing, Lambe says: “Use a soft jute string to secure your garland to any fixtures around your home for quick and easy hanging. Just make sure to be mindful of wires within the garland causing damage to fixtures and fittings.” 

5. Hang from nylon fishing line

For that floating look, opt to use a nearly-invisible fishing line to hang a garland in your home. The great thing about fishing line (like this clear fishing line from Amazon) is that it’s super strong and secure, meaning that it should be strong enough to hold even the heaviest of garlands. 

When I was growing up, my mom always used fishing line to display giant “floating” baubles, wreaths, and garlands around our home, and the effect was just magical. She always raved about how strong and sturdy the nylon wire was, and how easy it was to use to display the Christmas decorations

6. Test out a tension rod

We’ve all seen that viral TikTok video that shows just how easy it is to use a tension rod to display a Christmas garland in an archway, door frame, or window frame. So, why not use it yourself to hang a garland in a small space? 

All you need to do is pick out the right-sized tension rod — if you’re unsure about the size of the space, opt for an adjustable tension rod (like this adjustable tension rod from Amazon that’s super easy to use and is guaranteed not to damage your walls). 

Find the perfect-sized tension rod for your space, fit it in the doorway or arch, and wrap your garland (and some fairy lights) around it. Just make sure to check the weight limit that the tension rod can hold and to compare this to the weight of your garland. 

7. Use cable organizers to attach a garland

For a super simple and seriously quick and easy approach to hanging a garland, opt to use cable organizers (like these highly-rated cable organizers from Amazon) to hold your garland in place. 

These adjustable ties, which come in a wide range of colors and sizes, are an effortless way to position and secure your garland without causing damage to your walls. 


Where’s best to hang a garland in a small space?

When hanging a garland in a small space, it’s important to ensure that you’re selective about where you hang your garland. Naturally, you want to ensure that you opt for a space that doesn’t take up unnecessary space. 

If you have a mantel in your home, draping a garland across it can work wonderfully. Or, alternatively, you could opt to hang a garland above your kitchen cabinets using self-adhesive hooks, or you could opt to drape it along your steps or down the banister. 

When it comes to hanging a garland in a small space, knowing how and where to hang it can be more challenging than you would think. 

While the easy approach would be to tap a nail in wherever you want to position your garland, if you’re living in a rented space this probably isn’t an option. Instead, you will need to get creative with how you hang a garland and be selective about the tools that you use to do so. 

A good starting point is to focus on the Christmas decoration ideas that you want to use your garland to recreate, and then think about the different ways you can approach recreating the look without damaging the walls. 

Beth Mahoney
Freelance journalist

Hi! I’m Beth Mahoney and I’m a former staff writer at Real Homes. I’ve been a journalist for the national press for the past six years, specializing in commerce and trends-related lifestyle articles, from product reviews and listicles to guides and features. With an eye for pretty things (think: quirky wall prints, scalloped edge furniture, and decadent-looking tableware) but a limited budget, I love nothing more than a bargain buy.