Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration & Smart Holiday DIY Ideas

Will you be decorating cookies, making gingerbread, or creating a cute gingerbread house this year during the holidays? Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration & Smart Holiday DIY Ideas may just influence your answer. Because it doesn’t have to be pastry torture time in the kitchen or an impossible feat requiring patience and quantities of wine. 🙂 I have fanciful examples decorated by creative geniuses BUT ALSO simple ideas anyone of any age can handle.

Sweet and petite simple gingerbread house cottage upon a jadeite cake pedestal - Design Improvised. #gingerbreadhouse #christmasdiy #holidaybaking
Design Improvised – Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration as well as Smart Holiday DIY Ideas.

I independently selected products in this post—if you buy from one of my links, I may earn a commission.

Here’s my preferred uniform for decorating gingerbread!

Burt’s Bees Baby® Women's Holiday Rugby Striped Pajama Set - Red
Stripe Pajamas

I have always loved the simplicity of the petite little gingerbread houses (above) Design Improvised chose for a kids party. A jadeite pedestal makes everything look sweeter and darling!

Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration & Smart Holiday DIY Ideas

1. Use Waffles in Lieu of Gingerbread

Whimsical waffle gingerbread house - Target. #gingerbreadhouse #wafflehouse #christmasdiy #holidaybaking
Target – Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration as well as Smart Holiday DIY Ideas.

2. Hot Glue Graham Crackers

While they may not be edible, this is a smart and easy way to pre-assemble gingerbread houses for a decorating party. I have done this with homemade prebaked gingerbread for a December birthday party, and it was a hit!

Graham Cracker Gingerbread houses
Preassembled graham cracker gingerbread houses – Eat This Up

3. Enjoy the look of gingerbread with boxes

Aren’t these sweet? Continuing with that gingerbread decorating party theme, you could skip the traditional candy houses and decorate boxes. The template makes assembly a snap, and markers or paints will get the job done.

Gingerbread house box diy is a sweet way to package holiday goodies and Christmas cookies for gifts! #gingerbreadhouse #giftbox #christmasdiy
1000 Details – Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration as well as Smart Holiday DIY Ideas.

4. Cardboard Gingerbread Houses

A white chalk marker, some glue, and a cardboard box are about all you need for this easy craft.

Cardboard diy gingerbread gift box is a simple project requiring a box, glue, and a white chalk pen! #cardboardboxcraft #christmasdiy #gingerbreadhouse
Walmart – Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration as well as Smart Holiday DIY Ideas.

5. Decorate Pre-made Gingerbread Cookies

When I was a room mom, it was a challenge coming up with a DIY for the annual class Christmas party mainly because time was always short! Since kids love decorating cookies, I found keeping it as simple as possible was the key. Some years, I opted for scallop edged Swedish ginger cookies since they easily transform into snowflakes with white icing. I would make a big batch of homemade buttercream, distribute it into baggies, and students simply snipped a corner of the baggie to pipe icing on cookies.

Gingerbread Tin With Cookies
Gingerbread Cookies, Williams-Sonoma – Darling Gingerbread House Inspiration as well as Smart Holiday DIY Ideas.

6. Get Creative Customizing a Kit

If you start with a gingerbread house kit, there will still be plenty of room for creativity!

Magnificent pink gingerbread shop gingerbread house by Sprinkle Bakes! #gingerbreadhouse #candyhouse #pinkChristmas #holidaybaking
Sprinkle Bakes…certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.

Inspiration for Decorating Your Gingerbread Cottage

Sweetopia…certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.
Whimsical and darling gingerbread house decorated with lots of pastels and pink. #gingerbreadhouse #christmasdecor #christmasdiy #holidaybaking
Certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.

Fine. But the color palette may inspire you!

Amazing gingerbread house is a summer cottage! #gingerbreadhouses
via CakeCentral…certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.

Alternatively, bake the gingerbread and just enjoy the aroma of it baking and its deliciousness without any construction work at all!

Here are some gingerbread recipe ideas.

Decorate Your Christmas House With Nuts & Cereal

Charming gingerbread house cottage by Katlig.
Photo/Design: Katelig..certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.
Fanciful and charming gingerbread house stone cottage - WorthPinning. #gingerbreadhouse #christmasdecor #diy
Worth Pinning…certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.

When Gingerbread Decorating Looks Like Martha Was Here

Magnificent white gingerbread house cottage with trees and snow - Art-korova. #gingerbreadhouse #whitechristmas #diy #baking
Art Korova…certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.
Charming and fanciful gingerbread house - Family Holiday. #christmasbaking #gingerbreadhouse
 Family Holiday…certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.
Detail of icicles from frosted snowy roof of a charming gingerbread house cottage. #gingerbreadhouse #christmasbaking #holidaydiy
Certainly an inspiring holiday gingerbread house indeed.

My Childlike Wonky Candy Cottage

I’m terrible at cake decorating and gingerbread everything! The only thing I can really handle is making the most delicious tasting gingerbread. So my imperfect attempts should encourage you to go for it.

Gingerbread House Ideas & Inspiration #hellolovelystudio #pinkchristmas #gingerbreadhouse
Hello Lovely Studio…certainly imperfect indeed.

Pink sticks of bubblegum are the main design element. Gingerbread people cookies can be left plain or decorated.

Old fashioned hard candy sticks in delicious stripes also work well – but definitely use something to precisely made clean cuts! Mine look ridiculous in these photos!

Old-Fashioned Candy Sticks (80 pc)
Old fashioned candy sticks

You can buy royal icing or find a recipe for it here.

Wonky and quirky pink chewing gum gingerbread house - Hello Lovely Studio. #gingerbreadhouse #pinkchristmas #candyhouse #diy
Hello Lovely Studio…certainly a childlike candy house.

Trees were formed with gumballs, pretzel sticks, and gumdrops.

Wonky and quirky pink chewing gum candy house - Hello Lovely Studio. #gingerbreadhouse #pinkchristmas #candyhouse #diy
Hello Lovely Studio…certainly a fun way to decorate with gum.

Alphabet cookies can spell out any sentiment you like.

Candy house Ideas & Inspiration. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #pinkchristmas
Hello Lovely Studio…certainly wonky indeed.

White cotton candy makes great snow – it starts out fluffy and cotton-like before evaporating within a few hours and lying flat.

Candy house with pink chewing gum sticks. #hellolovelystudio #gingerbreadhouse #christmasdecor #pinkchristmas

Magnificent Gingerbread House Creations

Fanciful and magnificent gingerbread house with three stories - Goodies by Anna. #gingerbreadhouse #holidaybaking #christmasdiy
Goodies by Anna…in case you love a festive and fanciful Christmas gingerbread fantasy house.
Magnificent prize-winning gingerbread house by Glenda Tant called "Christmas in Venice." #gingerbreadhouse #christmasbaking #holidaybaking
Jason Tarr…in case you admire a festive fantasy Christmas gingerbread house.
Magnificent prize-winning gingerbread house by Glenda Tant called "Christmas in Venice." #gingerbreadhouse #christmasbaking #holidaybaking
Jason Tarr…in case you admire award winning fantasy gingerbread!

Rock Candy Trees

No matter what the size of your gingerbread house, rock candy sticks work awesomely for trees since they glisten and look like magical psychedelic quartzy Christmas evergreens. (Also notice how effective a monochromatic color scheme works: in this case, slightly varying shades of pink boost the romance factor…sigh!).

Charming pink accents on a gingerbread house cottage with pink rock candy trees. #gingerbreadhouse #pinkchristmas #holidaybaking
Gingerbread and Candy House inspiration in case you’re ready to create!

Gumdrop Gabled Roof

Gumdrops are your best friend as a gingerbread house builder since they are easily sculpted into varying shapes, cut open to reveal sticky insides that can be pressed into place, beautiful on their own with their sugary frosted snow exteriors, and perfect for massing on a rooftop as magical, balloon-like roof tiles.

Isn’t the tall gingerbread house below reminiscent of a Paris apartment building!?!

Magnificent sugar cookie townhouse with fanciful gumdrop decorated roof! Solodke. #gingerbreadhouse #candyhouse #gumdrops #holidaydiy
Solodke…certainly one of my favorite sugar cookie houses!

Heart Shaped Candies

Is it any wonder that a heart shaped anything pulls at our heartstrings? If you can find heart shaped chocolates for decorating your house…hurray! If you cannot, think about forming your own hearts from gumdrops or cutting heart shapes from Swedish Fish or fruit leathers.

Sweet gingerbread house with fanciful candy decorations by Finla Noronha. #gingerbreadhouse #holidaybaking #christmasdiy
Finla Noronha…in case you love a colorful holiday gingerbread cottage.

Topiary Trees

In the gingerbread house below, topiary trees have been formed with pink lollipops, brown sugar (I think), and thimble-sized caps or plastic toys, but you can easily substitute gumdrops for the base by molding them to your taste.

Adorable gingerbread house with hearts, stars, and pink
Local Cakemaker…in case you love inspiration for holiday gingerbread decorating.

Think Lollipops & Ice Cream Cones

Old fashioned swirly whirly vividly striped lollipops and suckers look so at home with homemade gingerbread houses and add to the nostalgia and romance so do try to find one or ten to enhance your gingerbread home’s landscape. These turquoise blueberry beauties may inspire you!

How to make them stand in place? Styrofoam will work for a base, and in some cases, gumdrops!

Quirky and fanciful gingerbread house decorated with ice cream cones and bright color candies - Allas.Se #gingerbreadhouse #holidaybaking #christmasdiy
Allas…certainly charming indeed.

Round and Round Candy House

The beautiful gingerbread house below incorporates round wafers which soften the home’s overall design and presentation. Even the royal icing is piped in lacy, delicate patterns as opposed to strong straight lines.

Colorful and fanciful gingerbread house decorated with circles - King Arthur Flour. #gingerbreadhouse #holidaybaking #christmasdiy
King Arthur Flour

Cupcake Chimney Smoke

Isn’t this sweet white cupcake adorned with a single red candy perfect for simulating chimney smoke from a candy cane chimney? Notice too how the vanilla wafer cookies as roof tiles are not perfectly placed in uniformly straight lines but rather are staggered artfully to suggest an aged and interesting rooftop. (Pssst…need lemondrops for house landscaping like below?)

Cupcake chimney on a fanciful candy house decorated with vanilla wafers. #gingerbreadhouse #christmasbaking #holidaydiy
Inspiring ideas for decorating gingerbread houses…certainly charming indeed.

Move Over Gingerbread

Your magical Christmas candy house need not be made of gingerbread or any cookies at all should you choose to build walls of chocolate.

You’ll want to adhere the chocolate to a cardboard base so the weight of your adornments do not collapse, and I predict this is one house that will be nibbled on throughout the season. How fun to research candy bars and undress them to reveal their shiplap, board and batten, and log cabin architectural textures.

Chocolate bar candy house decorated with marshmallows and cookies.
Chocolate houses and gingerbread ideas…certainly delicious indeed.

Cheerful Skittles Embellishment

Maybe you will opt for happy hued Skittles, a few gumballs, red hots, and peppermints for your gingerbread house design which can be completed in just a short amount of time…so simple lovely.

Adorable mini gingerbread house on jadeite pedestal and gold and white tablescape
Design Improvised…in case you need a holiday party theme!

Mini is Merry

This wee little gingerbread house looks adorable with its vivid and unexpected color palette and crisper look with royal icing only on the roof.

Miniature Gingerbread Houses with vivid colorful Polymer Clay
Petit Plat…in case you love wee little cottages.

Frank Lloyd Wright Approved

Who says you have to stick to a gabled roofline for your gingerbread house? Go Midcentury Modern with a flat roof and minimal embellishments for a creative spin on holiday house splendor.

Midcentury Modern graham cracker candy house with snowman and snow.
Photo via Vogue…certainly clever indeed.

If you plan ahead in your gingerbread making, you can cut an arched door and position it to be open like the house below which adds to the warm hospitable flavor of the whole design.

Adorable gingerbread house with malted chocolate balls on roof
Casas Deliciosas

Fairytale Turret

To create a tower or turret like the wondrous candy house below, you could incorporate a simple plastic kitchen funnel (with its base snipped off) for the roof atop a cylinder which only appears to be gingerbread. The addition of bright candy decorations and little fairy lights inside is pure magic.

Magical and darling, this candy house turret has been decorated whimsically with colorful candies - Lizon. #gingerbreadhouse #holidaybaking
Lizon…certainly magical indeed.

Wafers & Old School

Don’t forget the geometric lovely and sweet scale of candy wafers to construct your gingerbread houses. The chocolate bar candy house below is also illustrative of the power of limiting yourself to old fashioned candy only for a truly vintage-inspired gingerbread or candy house.

Hershey's chocolate decorated candy house - BHG. #gingerbreadhouse #candyhouse #christmasdiy #christmassweets
BHG…in case chocolate is your favorite gingerbread.

If You Decide to Make it a Party

Doesn’t the beyond lovely tablescape below take your breath away and perhaps make you yearn to host a gingerbread house making party (which would float the boat of every girl or grandma)? Gold dotted gift wrap or kraft paper, chevron gift wrapped boards, plastic paint palettes to house candies (just 50 cents per palette and free shipping!)and partially constructed gingerbread houses await the creativity and imaginations of the lucky party guests.

Beautiful Christmas party tablescape with holiday candy house building ingredients
Design Improvised…ideas for gingerbread decorating are inspiring indeed.

For holiday decor interior design inspiration, jump over HERE!

Pin this post for future reference! And DO VISIT my Christmas Boards HERE and HERE to save even more lovely inspiration!

Peace to you right where you are.


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  1. Amy
    November 14, 2019 / 11:58 pm

    So many festive ideas…where do I start!?! 😍

    • Michele
      November 15, 2019 / 7:48 am

      Hahaha – you can’t go wrong no matter where you start. I want to try a sugar cookie house this year! 🙂

  2. Carol S.
    November 15, 2019 / 12:54 pm

    These are all so fabulous and inspiring!! Thanks for sharing.

    • Michele
      November 15, 2019 / 1:08 pm

      I needed the inspiration to get crafting and creating – nothing like being held accountable by an inspiration blog…hahahaha! Have a lovely weekend, Carol.

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