If You See a Cardinal at Christmas, Here’s What it Can Mean

One of the most beautiful sights that can bring joy during the holiday season is seeing a cardinal. The vibrant red feathers of this small bird stand out against the winter landscape, and the cardinal bird meaning brings with it a message of good tidings and hope. In this blog post, I’ll share why you should hope to see a cardinal around the holidays, and what they can symbolize for you and your family.

cardinal on christmas tree branch

This blog post contains affiliate links. The opinions are wholly my own from my own experience. I may earn a small commission from clicks through to the websites that end in a purchase.

I’m super excited to be a part of this year’s Candlelight Home Tour! If you came from The Ponds Farmhouse home tour, welcome and be sure to go and see Simply 2 Mom’s gorgeous home tour next! The rest of the fabulous tours are linked at the bottom of this post.

The Christmas Cardinal: An Omen of Good Tidings and Joy

Seeing a red cardinal during the holidays is considered an omen of good things to come in the year ahead. It is said that when you spot one of these birds on Christmas Day or during any other holiday season, it means that you will be blessed with abundance and prosperity in all areas of your life—be it health, wealth, relationships, or something else entirely.

It’s said that cardinals appear when angels are near and that the cardinal represents loved ones who have passed away. They are seen as messengers from Heaven who deliver words of love and comfort during difficult times.

If you see a bright red cardinal, it means that you are being blessed with good luck and fortune. Cardinal symbolism has been around for ages. When red cardinals appear it is thought to be a symbol of good luck, and they often show up when someone is about to receive some good news. If you see a cardinal, take it as a sign that something wonderful is about to happen in your life.

red cardinal close up on christmas tree

A red cardinal is also known to be a symbol of strength and courage. So if you see a cardinal, it can also be a sign that you need to be brave and have faith. Trust and believe that good things are on the horizon.

The next time you see a red cardinal, make sure to take a moment to ponder the cardinal meaning as well as appreciate the beauty of nature and the blessings in your life.

The Meaning of a Cardinal During Christmas Time

The red cardinal has been associated with Christmas time since the 16th century in Europe. They were considered symbols of faith, joy, and hope by many early Christian cultures who believed that cardinals were sent from God to bring these gifts to those in need during difficult times. This belief has been passed down through generations and continues today in many families around the world.

What Seeing a Cardinal at Christmas Means for You

The cardinal is a beautiful bright red bird, and to see a cardinal at Christmas time can symbolize abundant blessings, angels are near, and the loving memories we have of past holiday celebrations. According to old superstition, seeing a cardinal is believed to be a message from our loved ones who have passed away and are visiting us in spirit.

If a cardinal alights near you on your doorstep this Christmas, take it as a sign that someone special is sending their love from beyond the grave.

An added bonus? According to legend to see a cardinal may also mean that warmer weather is on its way!

Christmas Tree Decorations Using Cardinals

One of the best things about the holidays is all of the festive decorations. Christmas trees, sparkling lights, and red birds are just a few of the things that can make your home feel extra special during this time of year. If you think you have a slim to none chance to see a cardinal based on where you live, you can always decorate with red cardinals instead!

If you’re looking for a unique way to incorporate red birds into your holiday decor, look no further. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

One simple way to decorate with red birds is to add a few to your Christmas tree. Whether you opt for large birds or choose smaller ones, they’ll add a touch of whimsy to your tree.

red cardinal christmas tree decorations

You can either purchase small red bird ornaments or you can also string together some small red lights to resemble a flock of birds flying through the night sky. Either way, they will add a cardinal bird meaning touch to your tree.

Adding Red Cardinals to Your Christmas Decor

As the holidays approach, you may be wondering how to incorporate some of this cardinal decor into your Christmas decorations. One way to do this is by adding artificial red birds to your Christmas decor. Red birds are not only a symbol of the holiday season but also a sign of good luck. Here are a few ideas for incorporating faux red birds into your Christmas decorations.

One way to use red birds is to try hanging red bird ornaments from your mantle or stairway banister. Or, for a truly festive touch, add a cardinal to a wreath with other ornaments.

red bird on a wreath

Or for mantle decor add a cardinal to a simple wreath hung on a mirror.

red cardinal on wreath in front of a mirror

Another way to incorporate red birds into your décor is by using them in a table setting.

red cardinal on dinner napkin

For example, you could add a faux cardinal to a napkin ring and place in the center of a dinner plate. This would make a beautiful and festive centerpiece for any holiday gathering.

cardinal bird on napkin

Another idea for using redbirds in your Christmas decor is to place a cardinal into a bowl of Christmas ball ornaments on a side table. Place the bowl on top of a coffee table book or a stack of books.

red cardinal in bowl of christmas ball ornaments

If you’re looking for a more subtle way to add cardinal meaning to your holiday décor, you can simply place one or two on shelves or in doorways.

Wherever you decide to put them, these little cardinal accents will definitely add some holiday cheer to your home. So if you’re looking for a unique and festive way to decorate your home this holiday season, consider adding some red cardinal birds to your décor. With their bright colors and lucky cardinal symbolism, they’re sure to bring some extra holiday cheer into your home.

Whatever approach you choose, decorating with red cardinals is a fun and easy way to add some extra holiday cheer to your home.

Where to Find Faux Red Cardinals

Shop some of my favorite cardinal decor below.

Cardinal Symbolism at Christmas

Overall, seeing a cardinal during the holiday season is truly something special! As such, if you see one flying around your home or garden this time of year, take a moment to appreciate the cardinal meaning along with its beauty and give thanks for everything that you have been blessed with over the past year.

With its bright red feathers standing out against the winter landscape, there’s no better reminder of joyous times shared surrounded by friends and family than seeing a cardinal bird at Christmastime!

red cardinal in a christmas tree PIN

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Christmas Candlelight Home Tours

A home that’s decorated for Christmas always feels so special. When the sun has gone down and the lights are all twinkling it becomes so magical. Sit back and enjoy touring these beautiful homes by the glow of candlelight. You can visit each Christmas home tour by clicking the links below.


Simply2Moms: Anne // Cottage On Bunker Hill // Bricks’n Blooms

The Ponds Farmhouse // Southern Crush at Home


Simply2Moms: AnnMarie // The Tattered Pew // Pasha is Home

Midwest Life and Style // Vintage Home Designs // Life on Summerhill


  1. Melanie it’s beautiful! I love the pop of red and those adorable cardinals! Merry Christmas! xo

    1. southerncrush says:

      You’re a doll! Thank you so much! The red pop is just what my tree needed this year! Merry Christmas!

  2. Merry Christmas Melanie!! I have a family of cardinals that live in our yard. You should see how beautiful they look sitting on a snowy branch…it’s just amazing!

    1. southerncrush says:

      I bet it is! We have cardinals, too, just not the snow!!! I need to come your way to see the beauty! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Melanie,
    I’ve always used a lot of cardinals in my Christmas decorating but had no idea of the symbolism. The Cardinal is our state bird, and I guess the color lends itself to Christmas Decorating. The screened porch is filled with them today, so I’m so glad you shared this information. I’ll be looking for one because it’s too cold here right now. LOL. Have the best Christmas!

    1. southerncrush says:

      Ha! I didn’t know it was your state bird ~ we learn something new everyday I guess! Thank you for stopping by and stay warm my friend!

  4. Anne from Simply2Moms says:

    I never realized that cardinals held so much symbolism and meaning! Thank you for sharing and for being part of our tour! Merry Christmas to you and your family. Simply yours, AnnMarie & Anne

    1. southerncrush says:

      Yes, isn’t it super interesting? Thank you for having me be a part of your tour! Merry Christmas!

  5. I love how you decorated, Melanie. The cardinals are so pretty, and I love the message of hope they bring. I see them often outside of our kitchen windows and think of my grandfather who passed a few years ago.

    Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

    1. southerncrush says:

      Yes! This! Thank you for stopping by and leaving a sweet heartfelt note! I’m sorry for your loss. Merry Christmas to you!

  6. Melanie this was such a neat post to read. I had never heard this about the cardinal. Thanks for sharing and Merry Christmas my friend!

    1. southerncrush says:

      Thank you so much! I appreciate you stopping by ~ Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and Happy Birthday!

      1. Doing winter decorations for my church,which includes red Cardinals
        They tie in our church theme
        Love, hope believe
        Spreading joy
        Encouraging others.
        Thanks for adding much goof for thought for my program

        1. Melanie Ferguson says:

          You’re so welcome!

  7. Thank you for sharing your home at Christmas! I love the red cardinal decorations! They are my favorite!

    1. southerncrush says:

      Awe! Thank you so much! I appreciate you and I’m glad you like them!

  8. Loved your Christmas home tour and learning more about the meaning of cardinals. I’ve always believed that they were a sign from heaven that someone you loved was checking in on you. I hope you have a very Merry Christmas & a happy New Year!!

    1. southerncrush says:

      Thank you so much! And thank you for having me on this blog hop it was fabulous for this time of year! Merry Christmas!

  9. The bit about cardinals being associated with Christmas since the 16th century in Europe is NONSENSE. Cardinals are native to the eastern U.S., and do not occur in Europe. If you want to believe they mean that an angel is near, fine. My yard must be infested with ghosts, because where I live in N.C., they are the bird I see most commonly.

  10. Around Christmas 2015 there had to be a couple hundred cardinals on our front lawn (75’x 100′ not a big grass lawn) for a couple days. I had never seen so many before or after that year. Living in a rural area we do see a few cardinals from time to time, but never the flock that decided to spend time in our yard that year. I’ve never heard of such an occurrence. Is this usual?

    1. I’m not certain, but that sounds like an amazing experience! Thank you so much for sharing!

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