Putting away the holiday decorations after Christmas can always seem bittersweet; I get a little sad that it is over and wish I could keep enjoying the decor, but I also yearn for a clean, fresh start to the New Year. Here are four ways we stay organized to make the tearing down/storage process a whole lot easier…and best of all, more efficient when setting up again next year, too!
1. Wrap a string of lights around a hanger
It takes less than a minute to wrap one complete strand of lights around a hanger that is bent into a star-like shape. Just hold an empty metal hanger hook in your hand and pull out on the long straight side with your other hand to make it into a diamond. Then, squeeze the middles in a little to make some room that the lights wouldn’t slip off. I just start by overlapping one of the plug ends over one of the bent-in areas and wrap around making an X-motion; a few wraps around one way then x-crossing the other way. No exact right way of course, so you’ll figure it out Making a little x-bundle of lights on a hanger prevents tangles, stores in a nice pile in a bin (or hanging somewhere if you have the space), and is SO easy to hold and unravel the next year as you go around the Christmas tree! Super easy to plug into the wall bundled this way to check that the strand works, as well.
2. Store many ornaments in a large cookie/popcorn tin
If you have lots of random, not-so-fragile ornaments, storing them in a large tin can work very well. We have a few nice, meaningful ornaments that stay in their own boxes, of course, but this is the perfect space to keep the bulk of ours. Typical glass bulb ornaments, snowflakes, little trains, figurine-like ones, old gingerbread ornaments I made, etc are all stored in this catch-all nicely. You’d be surprised how many ornaments we have stuffed in here.
3. Store pinecones in a sealed bag, and infuse with a scent all year
I dumped these pinecones (some fake, some cleaned real ones) in a Ziploc bag, and added multiple drops of essential oil. This year I used Christmas Spirit, but there are many wonderful seasonal aromas to choose/combine from like Cinnamon Bark, Thieves, Clove, Tangerine, Peppermint, Idaho Blue Spruce, Nutmeg, etc. Give the bag a little shake, store with your decorations, and get ready for the awesome aroma upon opening the bag next year. You could add some optional cinnamon sticks as well. Check out this post for some more seasonal blend ideas, or my essential oils resources if you’d like more information about how essential oils are more than just nice aromas.
4. Neatly label storage bins
As tempting as it is to just quickly pack away decorations to get it done, spending an extra few minutes this year will save tons of time and headache when unpacking next year. Figure out the system that works for you best in terms of what is stored where, and be sure to label it. I used a marker and some tape to list the contents of each bin last year and it was amazingly easy to decorate this year, and effectively store items away again. It took much of the thinking out of the process. No more organizational Tetris or time wasted re-planning a storage technique. An even better idea is to take a picture of your completely packed bin, print it out, and tape that to the bin. Then you’ll know exactly how it all fit in there at the beginning of the season. We label all of our storage bins for all seasons and holidays and put them in our tiny little crawlspace in the right order so that we can keep cycling through without having to move a ton to reach the bins we’ll need next.
Simple tips, but such time-savers and hassle-reducers which we all will appreciate when the next holiday season rolls around!
Do you have an awesome organization secret for your decorations? I’d love to hear it, and from you in general below!
This is my necessary disclaimer that this blog is not meant to diagnose, treat, or cure. I am only a mom with an education background. I must let you know that any essential oils statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. I simply approve for myself and family of such things that I deem safe, effective, and positively life-transformative. I encourage you all to be informed and empowered with your health. Also, some of my posts may contain affiliate links. When you click them, you help me to cover a small portion of the cost of this blog. I appreciate your support so that I can continue to do what I love. Please note that I only ever endorse products that are in alignment with Odds & Evans’ ideals, my personal use, and those I believe would be of value to my readers.