If you are anything like me, you love decorating for the holidays. From bright, bold light displays to beautiful Christmas trees – there is nothing that brings me more festive joy. However, there is another side to all this decorating and that’s the process of storing everything when the holiday season comes to an end.
In this guide, we’re going to explore several Christmas décor storage ideas. This includes how to stash your light strings away without worrying about how to untangle them again next year. We’ll also explore how to make the most of the storage space that you have available, creating an organized storage system. Proper storage of your decorations will protect your investment and make the process easier each holiday season.
Dedicate a Closet or Corner of the Garage to All Things Christmas
One of the biggest mistakes that people make when storing their Christmas décor is tucking it into any available storage space. By tucking your holiday decorations in and around the rest of your belongings, you make it harder to find what you’re looking for. Each year, you must dig everything out, Christmas-related, or not, just to find what you’re looking for. Instead, set aside a designed area specifically for your holiday storage needs.
Use a Tackle Box for Smaller Ornaments
Smaller ornaments can easily get lost if they are tossed in with everything else. They may be small, but they add a special touch when decorating your Christmas tree or accenting your holiday garland. A basic tackle box provides you with a way to organize your ornaments by style and color, making use of the compartmentalized storage. Most tackle boxes also offer a larger bulk storage space that can hold bigger ornaments, keeping it all together in one easy carry case.
Store Wrapping Paper in a Plastic Garment Bag
Wrapping paper can be used for more than just wrapping gifts during the holiday season. There are many creative DIY decorations that can be made with the decorative and festive designs that gift wrap features. However, it doesn’t take long for partial rolls of paper to add up and start to take over your storage space. This season, store your collecting of wrapping paper in a way that will keep it all up off the ground and minimize space required while also making it easy to see what you have on hand by placing them in a clear hanging garment bag.
Wrap Christmas Lights Around a Piece of Cardboard to Avoid Tangling
It is one of the biggest frustrations faced while decorating our houses for the holiday season – sorting through the tangled strings of Christmas lighting. The bigger your lighting display, the greater the chance that you’ll run into problems. One of the easiest ways to prevent tangling requires nothing more than a few pieces of cardboard. Cut your cardboard into a rectangle, with a slit on one end. Tuck the end of your light string into the slit and proceed to wrap the lights around the cardboard like you would a spool of thread, securing the other end in the same way that you did the first. They can easily be stored on a shelf or in a storage tote.
Create a Written Inventory of Your Holiday Storage
Don’t dig through all your holiday boxes blindly each time that you’re looking for something specific. Instead, take the time this year to create a written inventory of everything that you have using either paper and pen or a spreadsheet. Make sure to include information like the style or color of your decorations, the number that you have available of each type, and specifically where they will be stored. For example, if you have a set of 3 traditional green holiday wreaths for your front windows that are hung in the back of your storage closet during the off-season, include all of that on your inventory. It will make it far easier to plan out and execute your holiday decorations next year.
Add Felt to Protect Fragile Ornaments
When storing glass ornaments, the most important factor to consider is how to keep them safe from breakage. A simple and low-cost solution is to line each of your storage compartments with a piece of felt. The soft felt will cushion your breakables and can be purchased at any craft store as well as most dollar stores. Simply cut the sheet you purchase into smaller squares based on the dimensions of the space in which your ornaments will be stored.
Take Advantage of Vertical Space with Shelves
If you’re trying to fit a large collection of holiday décor into a limited space in the corner of your garage, adding shelves will provide you with significantly more storage space. This allows you to use the vertical room available, stacking items up off the floor while still being able to access any bin you choose at any given time. You can use wall-mounted shelving or large commercial shelving units, just be sure that your shelves are large enough and have a high enough weight capacity to support your storage totes.
Use Magazine Files for Organization
One item that you may not think to use when organizing and storing your holiday décor, magazine holders are a great solution for smaller collections of items including bows or gift tags for wrapping, window clings, or smaller decorative figurines. You can line them up beside one another in a box or basket creating individual compartments for each of the items mentioned while still being able to easily see and access the items being stored.
Store Artificial Wreaths in a Plastic Bag to Keep Dust Off
Most of us will store our artificial wreaths by hanging them, minimizing the space that they will require. However, they can collect a lot of dust sitting out like that. One easy way to control the dust build-up is to place each of the wreaths in a plastic garbage bag before putting them away for the season. If you choose bags with an easy-tie drawstring, you can also use the drawstrings as a hanging loop that can be hooked onto a wall hook or around a clothes hanger.
Reduce Required Space with Vacuum Storage Bags
When it comes to storing items like holiday throw pillows or decorative blankets, vacuum storage bags can help you to reduce the space necessary for holiday storage. These bags can be purchased in a variety of different sizes, accommodating whatever you need to store. Simply fill the bag, seal off the bag, and then remove the air to compress them using your standard vacuum cleaner. Your items will be clean and protected until you open the bag to put them out again next year.
Use Clear Storage Totes to See What’s Inside
Storage totes are an obvious solution for packing up and storing your holiday decorations when they’re not in use, however, they don’t always make it easy to identify what you have contained inside. Trade in the standard totes for clear storage totes, giving you a full view of everything. Make your decorating efforts easier than ever with everything you’re looking for a quick glance away.
Reuse Original Packaging Where Possible
Companies are careful when packaging their breakable items, ensuring that they are safe during the shipping process, whether it’s shipping to your house or to your local store to be displayed on the shelf. One of the best storage solutions to keep your items safe during the off-season is to store them in the original packaging. This could include durable plastic or foam padding. The idea is that these packages have been designed specifically for the shape and unique needs of your décor.
Organize Items with Travel Packing Cubes
Packing cubes are designed to help sort out our belongings in a suitcase to make it easier to find what you’re looking for when you’re on the go. It was suggested to me a few years ago that this could be carried over into our holiday décor and we’ve been taking advantage of it ever since. Within your storage totes, organize your decorations using the packing cubes, either based on the type of decoration or the area where it will be used. Label your packing cubes or select cubes with a clear top so that you can see which is which at a quick glance. Next season, grab the appropriate packing cubes for each job and you’ll move through the decorating process even quicker.
Take Photos as You Tear Down for Next Year
Are you in love with the way that your holiday decorations came together this year? If so, the easiest way to recreate that look year after year is to document how it is all arranged. Take detailed pictures before you take down your holiday décor, making sure that you cover different angles so that you can see how everything is placed. Save these pictures on your computer or even print them out and stick them to the storage totes that they correspond with.
Purchase a Durable Wreath Storage Bag
There are several storage bags specifically designed for the storage of your holiday wreaths from year to year. They offer protection from dust and debris, keeping your wreath clean and fresh. Soft-sided wreath bags are easy to store when not in use, but they offer less protection against physical damage, like your wreath being smashed. However, if you are concerned that this may happen, there are also hard-sided plastic wreath containers with that additional level of protection.
Add a Garment Rack to Your Storage Area for Hanging Options
You will see several different ways to hang items on this list, however, this method of storage will obviously require a place to hang everything up. If you don’t have a built-in space for hanging your decorations, you can create one with the addition of a garment rack. Choose a rack on wheels to make it easy to move out of the way in your storage space as needed or even to bring with your while you move your décor to the desired location to put it out on display. Many garment racks also include additional storage space for other décor.
Sort Decorations by Color or Theme
If you are the kind of Christmas lover that enjoys changing up your decorations from year to year, this storage tip is for you. This year, organize your ornaments into different storage totes based on their color or a specific decorating them. Doing this will make it easier than ever to find what you need next year. Simply choose your new theme/inspiration and then pull the bins that correspond with it. No more digging through everything trying to figure out what will and won’t fit your vision.
Use Vinyl Decals to Label Storage Totes
Vinyl cutting machines have taken the world of crafting by storm, giving people the opportunity to make custom shirts, signs, mugs, and more from the comfort of home. Another way that you can tap into your creativity and incorporate vinyl into your personal routine is to make cute vinyl stickers for the front of your storage totes indicating which holiday is kept inside. Some examples include a Christmas tree for the Christmas season, a Jack-o-lantern for Halloween, or a rabbit for Easter. These quick visual cues will let you know which bin is which in mere seconds.
Save Tissue Paper from Unwrapping Gifts to Protect Fragile Items
As you unwrap your gifts this holiday season, take a moment to sort out all the tissue paper and hold onto it. Why? Used tissue paper often winds up heading out to the landfill when the holidays are over, however, it makes a great packing solution to offer a level of padding and protection for your more fragile decorations. At the end of the day, the color of your packing supplies won’t matter if it does the job. So, save whatever you get your hands on.
Tuck Electrical Cords into Toilet Paper Rolls and Label with the Length
When we talk about storing holiday décor after the season ends, there is one important piece of the puzzle that’s often forgotten. I’m talking about the extension cords! What would a beautiful light display be without power? You may reuse a couple of your cords outside of the holiday season, but there is a good chance that there are several that you won’t need again until the following Christmas. One way to easily store your cords is to wrap them up as if you’re going to tie them, then slip them into an empty toilet paper roll. Write the length of the cord or any other important details (number of outlets, whether there is a built-in timer, etc.) on the roll so that you can easily grab the right cord for the job.
Use Plastic Disposable Cups to Protect Fragile Ornaments
One reason that glass Christmas bulb ornaments are damaged during storage is that they are placed all together in a tote where they knock against one another. It doesn’t take much for this action to lead to cracks or broken ornaments. Separate your ornaments cheaply and effectively using sheets of cardboard and disposable plastic cups. Cut your cardboard to the dimensions of your storage tote so that it can sit inside. Taking one cup at a time, glue them down onto the cardboard with the open end of the cup facing up. Repeat this process until they fill the tote when stacked up. You can now place a single ornament in each cup, creating a buffer around them to keep them safe.
Build a Functional Ribbon Shelf
Ribbon can be used in many ways throughout the holiday season from hanging ornaments to wrapping presents. This often means that we end up with a large collection of ribbons in different colors and styles. Rather than throwing it all in a box where your rolls may come unraveled and tangled, consider creating a ribbon-specific shelf. This is a shelf that allows your ribbon to sit up on its side with a protective lip in front of it to prevent it from rolling out. It will make it easy to take the ribbon from a roll without even having to remove it from the shelf. Incorporate a cover to close it up easily and store it away until next year.