Fourth of July: How to Decorate with the United States Flag

Independence day is right around the corner and patriotism is in the air! But did you realize that many people find decorating with the American flag unpatriotic and even offensive? According to The United States Flag Federal Law, “The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery. It should never be festooned, drawn back, nor up, in folds, but always allowed to fall free. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard.” Uh oh! It looks like many Americans in their love for home and country are frequently breaking the flag code!

Let’s explore a collection of 20 inspirational (and a few law-breaking) ways to decorate with the American flag!

The easiest way to decorate a room with the American flag is to simply hang one on the wall as a tapestry or piece of art. Just look at how much color and personality the flags add to each space!

american flag Apartment Therapy

american flag

via Simplified Bee

american flag decorating

Country Living

american flag decorating

via Ciao Newport Beach

To make the flag into a true piece of art, consider framing the flag behind glass. It creates a unique focal point for the entire room.

american flag

via Homebunch

american flag

via Centsational Girl

Warning: If you are a flag purist, you might want to scroll fast through these next several flag-rule-breakers! American flags as draperies, bedding, and decor might not pass the flag code, but they certainly pass for pretty.

american flag decorating


american flag decorating

via HomeGoods

american flag bedding

My Home Ideas

Traditional Home

american flag decorating


All of the DIY’ers and crafters out there will appreciate the following collection of pictures! Why not make a wooden pallet flag, baseball bat flag, yarn wreath flag, or flag-covered decorative sphere this 4th of July?


Pottery Barn

Sweet Something Design

Autumn Place Arts

Always in Training

The Lettered Cottage via HGTV

The Cellar Door Stories

american flag decorating

Traditional Home

And lastly, for those of you who really want to go all out in showing your love for America…

via Phototravels

via Cafe Chatelaine

via Greenwich Citizen

Whether you choose to hang a flag proudly from your front porch flagpole, or paint your entire home exterior red, white, and blue (not recommended), we hope you will express your patriotism this month! What do you think of the flag code? Are you offended by non-traditional flag decor? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Share this:


  1. Michelle Gilliland says

    I thought that most of those were great! The only ones that are even somewhat iffy are the distressed flags. That would probably not be in the best taste. Really though, the only truly offensive flag decoration would be the classic American flag bikini on a 300lb woman. ha! Nice post, I loved the wreath. Very original!

  2. says

    It’s all in good spirit – and I have family in the service. Why not show your pride? No one is desecrating anything. Those rules apply to an ACTUAL flag. An “inspired-by” painted art piece is not the flag. Plus, what’s in my house is my business. If someone in my home or who comes to my home is offended, then I would reconsider.

    • Beth says

      The rule I found the most interesting was the rule regarding anything bearing the flag image used as a disposable (napkins & plates with flags on them). The rules don’t all just apply to actual flags, but I completely agree. I think most everyone who uses flag images in decor is doing so out of reverence for our country!

  3. says

    The only use of the flag I’ve ever been offended by is flag bathing suits/bikinis – I just don’t feel like the flag should be “sexy”!

    • Beth says

      I have some cover-up shorts that a bought several years ago from Target that have “USA” across the backside. I love them but I know they offended many so now I just wear them around the house :).

  4. says

    I was in the service and flag etiquette was part of our training. The rules definitely apply to actual flags. As far as napkins go, the depiction of an actual flag would be inappropriate on a disposable item. It would be a disgrace to the symbol. Stars and stripes in other configurations are not a violation. I kind of like all of these, but the ones that bother me a bit are the one gathered as a drape and the other tattered one wrapped on the flotation device. Those to me are a violation. With all that said there is nothing wrong with a little patriotism…in fact we need more. I love the framed flags!

  5. Wes Montileaux says

    Love the pallet flag over the couch! Very nice! However, when properly hanging the flag, the stars and stripes should be hung, while facing it, with them on the left,not on the right.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *