It is sad to think about, but the holidays are over. I know that some people like to spread the holiday cheer by leaving their Christmas decorations up until February (or May). Not me. I like to start the year fresh with the house as clear of clutter as possible. *Gasp* did she just call Christmas decorations clutter?? Yes, yes I did. I love Christmas as much, or more, than the next person but I also like to promptly store Christmas decorations after the holiday is over. I hope we can still be friends.
Over the years, I have come across a number of ways to ensure that it is stress free when I both pack and unpack the Christmas decorations. Who wants to be grumpy because of tangled lights or broken ornaments during the festive, holiday season? Turn on some Christmas music (I won’t tell) and let me share with you my tips and tricks!
1. Organize your Christmas decoration boxes by room or area.
This tip helps with both unpacking and packing Christmas decorations. We have four areas that we decorate: living room, dining room, kitchen, and outside. All of the outside decorations go in a separate box. All the living room decorations go in a separate box. The dining room and kitchen decorations share a box but are organized within the box by room. This can help you jog your memory about where a certain decoration goes.
2. Pack and unpack by room.
If you adopt tip #1, this step will be easy! When I am unpacking decorations I don’t get overwhelmed because I am unpacking decorations and decorating only one area or room at a time. The same holds true for when I am packing up decorations. Going room by room will make it easy to follow tip #1.
3. Put items that your Christmas decorations replace in your Christmas boxes for dual purpose storage.
There are many areas where I add Christmas decorations to the things that are already there. However, there are some areas (side table, mantle, and tables) that I need to replace the items that are there for the rest of the year with Christmas items. To do that, I take that area and unwrap or unpack the Christmas items and simply replace them, in the same box, with the regular household items. For instance, I have a mug hanger on the wall. I take off the regular mugs and replace them with Christmas mugs. Then, I take the regular mugs and wrap them up and store them in the box the Christmas mugs came from. This means I do not have to find another place or box for those mugs while my Christmas decorations are up. It also means that the other regular items are not sitting around and cluttering up the house. Win-win!
4. Wrap breakable items with cloth or other soft Christmas decorations.
I have a number of Christmas decorations – think stockings, table runners, etc. that are made of cloth or other soft material. I use these decorations as my “bubble wrap” to protect my breakable Christmas decorations. This helps to make the best use of the storage container space that I have. The storage boxes will not fill up as quickly, and you will be able to fit more Christmas decorations into each box. Also, I have a number of stuffed animals that I use as Christmas decorations. I use these as padding between other Christmas decorations that don’t need to be wrapped up but probably shouldn’t be bumping up against other Christmas decorations.
5. Use the containers you bought your Christmas decorations in.
Christmas decorations come in all shapes and sizes. Most Christmas decorations are unusual shapes. In order to keep my Christmas decorations organized within their boxes, I use the containers or storage that they came in. This keeps the decorations themselves organized but also ensures that you don’t have to go out and buy containers or bags to use.
6. Use gallon Ziploc bags to organize.
Following tip #5 is the best way to organize your Christmas decorations within your storage boxes. However, if it is too late for you (you threw away some or all the containers that your decorations came in), then I recommend Ziploc bags for organization. This can be especially helpful if you have themed trees and certain ornaments that only go on certain trees. As you can see from the picture below, we have a Broncos tree! Ziploc bags are nice verses boxes because they are easier to pack with other items and will take up less space.
7. Store thin ornaments in a box.
Ornaments are the things that take up the most space for me. A number of them are breakable, and so they have to be wrapped with something for safety. There are some ornaments that I have that are thin and not breakable. I found that putting them in a small box keeps them from just floating around in the larger storage box. This way, when I am decorating the tree I can pull from this box and easily fill the tree with ornaments.
I hope one or more of these tips and tricks are helpful! Do you have any tips to add?