It is always fun to decorate for Christmas, but not nearly as much fun to pack away your holiday decor! After some research and personal experience, I have put together some tips that will help you pack away your holiday decor like a genius and hopefully simplify your process for next season.
Get in the Right Mindset
Before you begin packing anything away, take a moment and evaluate what you loved about your holiday season this year. Think about what your family really enjoyed and what may have caused a lot of stress. This helps really solidify the holiday memories for me.
Before you begin to pack away your holiday decor, dig deep and ask the question, “Am I willing to store something for a whole year that I don’t use?” Be sure to apply this to any decor that is still in its storage bin and was not put out this year. Consider donating it to someone who would use it.
Apply the same question to your current decor. Did you put something out that you really don’t love? Perhaps you had to clean up the glitter that constantly fell from it? Are you willing to store it if you don’t love it? As Nester Smith, author of the Cozy Minimalist says, “I am not in the storage of cute stuff business.” I will admit when I first heard that it stung a bit because it hit so close to home!
I write myself notes about what we ate, what decorations I really loved having out, what activities were extra special, and also what maybe did not go so well. (Making notes and lists can be life-changing!) For instance, my family loves having snowball fights with fake snowballs. Because of my notes from last year reminding me how much fun they had, I added a few more snowballs to our collection this year and made sure we tossed them at each other at least once a week!
This year, I purchased a beautiful vintage-themed Santa puzzle for us to do. While the idea was great, there was not much interest and it merely took up valuable space on my table. Maybe I will try the puzzle again next year or at least find a better spot for it.
From my notes from last year, I also realized that I needed to plan ahead for New Year’s fun for my kids. I failed to plan last year, and the night was not a ton of fun for them. This year, I picked up some sparkling cider and fun cups ahead of time so I don’t let that sneak up on me again.
Get To Packin’
Pull out all your holiday bins. How many do you have? Is that a reasonable number of bins you want to store? I am not going to give you a hard and fast rule on how many bins you should have, but remind yourself that they are taking up space in your life. Go ahead and purge the decor from the bins that you did not use this year.
If you are like me you have collected quite a few pieces of Christmas decor over the years, then the colors may not really coordinate. If you lay out all the decor that you know you want to keep, it can help you learn the color story that your holiday decor tells. Are you a fan of bright red and green, more muted tones, or all-white decorations? Seeing it all together helps you know what you love.
Knowing what you love and what works in your home will help you in two ways. First, you can let go of any decor that does not fit in your color story. Second, if you are tempted to purchase anything for next year, you will easily know if it fits your color story and resist an impulse buy that may not serve you.
Practical Tips to Pack Away Your Holiday Decor Like a Genius
Now that you have evaluated what you have and how much you want to keep, here are a few practical tips you may not have considered.
- The notes you took on how your holiday season went? Be sure to put them front and center in your storage so you will see them when you first open up your bins. When my kids were babies, I even wrote on my storage bins to encourage my future self to make the most of the season with them. It is a sweet reminder now 10 years later!
- Last year, I purchased a dedicated bag to put my Christmas tree in, and it opened up so much more space than the old layered duct tape box it was kept in previously. I will never keep those Christmas tree boxes again!
- Be sure to scan your pantry Christmas paper goods, cookie decorating items (even sprinkles, etc), and anything else you only use during the Christmas season that won’t expire by next Christmas. Pack those away instead of letting them take up space in your pantry or cabinets year-round. Be sure to consider the temperature of where you are storing these food items, though. The chocolate in the hot cocoa bomb kit we did not get around to making this year may not fare well in my hot garage. (It is a good idea to store these items in a rodent-proof bin also!)
- Never use round bins to pack away your holiday decor. It is not the most practical way to store and does not make the most use of space.
- Gather up any holiday-themed clothing you have and pack it in your bins also. If you are like me, then you don’t want something you wear for one month out of the year taking up valuable closet space year-round.
Make Next Year’s Decorating Easier!
I hope these tips will help you cultivate a good mindset and pack away your holiday decor like a genius. No one wants the stress of decorating to steal the spirit of the holiday season! Planning ahead, evaluating your notes, and keeping only what you use and love are great ways to save time, money, and your sanity.
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