Storing Christmas decorations after the holidays can sometimes turn into a dreaded hurried chore because you often have more to pack than you remembered and suddenly not enough storage space. If you don’t have a plan in place the process can drag out until you find yourself deciding between watching the Rose Bowl or packing up your Christmas decorations. Let us help you through this.
At TMS Self Storage, we offer our seven tips for storing Christmas decorations that will turn this chore into a gift to yourself.
Our After-Christmas Holiday Hack
Simple planning and storage of holiday decor can help keep your home clean of overstuffed closets while protecting your items and setting you up for future holidays. With our tips you will find storing Christmas decorations a pleasure and not something you dread each year.
Our seven tips to organize and store your holiday decor are so easy to follow, you will be done with this task and still be able to watch that college bowl with no regrets.
- Take inventory of your Christmas decor. This first step in storing Christmas decorations is to figure out how much storage space and how many storage bins you will need. Find an open space in the garage, basement or living room and lay out your decorations.
After you have gathered the decorations to be packed away, start categorizing each item. Your categories will include outdoor or indoor, outdoor lights, indoor lights, ornaments, types of ornaments (such as children’s ornaments, collectible ornaments, etc.). Make a list of your categories on a sheet of paper and feel free to make the list as you see fit. After all, your list is for you. Next year you’ll want to be able to follow the thinking in your categories.
Next, organize your items into these categories. In some cases you may need only one storage bin. In other cases you may need two, and some categories can share a bin. Tally up the number of bins you will need to purchase.
- Use uniform storage containers. Storage bins of the same size and shape are easier to stack, saving you space and money. We recommend that you purchase the same type of storage bins so they are easily stacked. When storing in a small self-storage unit, we recommend that you select a clear see-through bin so you can easily see what’s inside.
We have found that both Target and Walmart are great places to purchase Christmas storage bins. Both offer a number of options for storing wreaths, lights, wrapping paper, etc.
While purchasing the same size and shape is optimal, we also know that these bins can be costly and you may need to spread out the cost of these bins over a few years. If you can’t get all of the bins at first, make a plan to purchase so many bins per year until you have all of your items organized to your satisfaction. Until then, use U-Haul or Amazon boxes about the same size as your clear bins to make stacking easier.
- Label everything! Labeling all of your boxes is a major time saver when it’s time to decorate next year. It allows you to get right to the very decoration you want without tearing through all of the other boxes to find it and possibly damaging a fragile ornament.
There are levels of labeling. Some feel comfortable simply marking the box with “Interior Christmas lights.” We recommend 3.5 in. x 5.5 in. box and tote labels that are a bit larger and allow you space to add sublists.
- Get rid of anything broken. Before you start filling your beautiful new bins, assess the damage from this holiday season. Did some Christmas light strings become half on and half off? Did an ornament get damaged when the cat pawed it to the ground?
Rather than simply packing away the problems for next year, be proactive. Repair what you can, if you want to spend the time, and trash the broken and unsalvageable decorations. Decide today before you pack away and leave the decision for next year. There is nothing more disheartening to the holiday spirit than finding several strands of lights broken, and you need to stop the decorating and see if there are any strands of Christmas lights left at Home Depot on December 15. Finding all of the decorations ready to use next year will streamline the decorating process and alleviate holiday stress.
- Pack everything up neater than you found it. Treat yourself to a gift next year – beautifully wrapped ornaments and decorations. Imagine unwrapping these neatly packaged Christmas decorations when you get to decorating for the holidays next year. It changes the whole experience of decorating, and each item is almost like a present itself.
Over the years, you have spent a lot of time and money selecting these decorations. They are special and worthy of protection. For many of us, our ornaments remind us of earlier happy times. We remember the people in our lives and the memories we share. Neatly storing lights and carefully wrapping ornaments will preserve these special decorations until you unpack them again next year.
- Perform after-holiday decluttering. As you’re repacking the décor, take note of items you didn’t use. Do you have old ornaments that no longer mean so much to you? Do you know of someone who could use these? Unloading Christmas decorations after Christmas is not so easy but a worthy effort to clear up your storage space.
We offer a couple options here for unloading Christmas decorations after Christmas. You could try giving them away. Often non-profits don’t take Christmas decor donations until October or November because they can’t afford to store them all year, either. You could ask friends if they would like them. You could offer them for free on Facebook Marketplace. The goal is to get rid of them so that they are not taking up precious storage space.
- Reserve a storage unit. At TMS, we offer secure Christmas decoration storage solutions. Our storage units have gated keypad entry, surveillance cameras, and alarm systems for your peace of mind. A climate-controlled storage unit offers additional protection for storing Christmas decorations.
Need extra space to store your holiday items? Contact TMS Self Storage to discuss our available Christmas storage options.