How to Store Holiday Decorations

Do you have a lot of holiday decorations? Are they in a mass of boxes and bags? Today’s article is going to help you turn that chaos into a streamlined system with tips on how to store holiday decorations. Follow one or more of these easy tips to help you decorate more quickly for the holidays. This is a great tip on how to declutter a tricky part of your home without freaking out.

How to Organize Holiday Decorations

While everyone is busy getting ready for the holiday season, one that is full of eggnog and mistletoe, others may be avoiding it simply because, to them, decorating is a chore.

But maybe you are not a fan of decorating because you haven’t found a system that works for keeping those things organized.

Whether your home is already decked out or you are still months away, these tips will help you to turn tinsel chaos into a more organized storage system.

Before we can get to the organizing you will first want to declutter what you have.

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When is the best time to declutter holiday decorations?

I think the very best time to declutter any holiday decorations is while you are getting them out. Since you will be touching each item anyhow, why not sort them as you do?

For each item, decide if it is a piece ask yourself the following questions.

  1. Is this a piece I love? If so, set it aside to put out as a decoration.
  2. Is this a piece that is broken? If so, toss it or set it aside to fix.
  3. Is this a piece I no longer want? If so, put it into a donation box or save it to pass on to your kids to use in their homes someday.

Continue going through each item sorting them out as you go.

Decluttering decorations can be hard.

Let’s face it. Holiday decorations are a bit different than most of our things. They are mostly all fragile and therefore need a safe place to be stored away. They are only needed once a year which is probably the biggest reason you may find that you have a large collection of things to work through.

Decorations also may come with a memory. One that keeps that particular item strongly attached to our hearts. 

box of holiday decorations-2

With so much attached to each tiny ornament, it is essential to set up a system for storing things, so our decorations last just as long as our love for the holidays does.

Where and How to Store Holiday Decorations

Not all homes are the same and that means not all of the options listed below are going to work for everyone. Choose the ones that you feel will work for you and give them a try.

In an Attic or Crawl Space

One of the most common places to store decor, or any miscellaneous home item, is in the attic. And if your home has one, this is the best place to start.

It’s a great place to get things out of your hair and away from the everyday hustle and bustle. Christmas decorations are no exception and do quite well when stored in this space.

You can either designate an area in your attic for each holiday to set up a storage system if that is in your budget.

What containers work best in an attic?

My top pick for storing holiday decorations in an attic is inside of plastic totes. These stackable, plastic containers are great for areas that are not climate controlled. Since most attics are limited in insulation, using the proper storage is crucial to keeping our decorations safe and sound. 

Having stackable containers also is a space-saver — Since many attics are near the roof’s pitch, you can stack these decoration designated containers high, making room for other things you may want to put in your attic.

D/M Pro Tip: If you have quite a few items stored in your attic, you can use colored totes to match the holiday this will make finding the exact decorations you need more quickly and easily.

A few ideas are:

  • Fall – Orange
  • Halloween – Black
  • Thanksgiving – Brown
  • Christmas – Green
  • Hanukkah – Blue
  • Valentine’s Day – Red
  • St. Patrick’s Day – Yellow
  • Easter – Pink
  • 4th of July – Dark blue

You can also use clear storage totes. I love this option because you can easily see what is inside without having to open each one.

Storage Setups

I prefer low shelving for storing in an attic or crawl space as it tends to work in low-ceiling areas quite well.

In the Closet

Not everyone has enough Christmas decorations to justify using attic space. And not everyone has an attic where they can store things in.

That’s why storing Christmas decorations in a closet is a perfect holiday decoration solution, especially if you don’t have that much mistletoe.

Storing your Christmas decorations in your closet also has the added perk of being inside the home, where you don’t have to worry about a climate control solution like you do with other options found here. 

What containers work best in a closet?

Using variously sized cardboard boxes, shoe boxes, or other miscellaneous containers, you can store quite a bit on an upper shelf in a guest bedroom closet quite efficiently.

Here are a few things to remember if you chose to use boxes to store your decorations.

  1. Choose a sturdy box.
  2. Choose a box that is small enough for you to move around safely and not too heavy even if it is full.
  3. If you can, choose a box that has openings on either side that work as handles.
  4. Be sure you have a big and bold label, so you know just exactly what is inside each box.
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D/M Pro Tip: If you are on a tight budget, you do not need to purchase cardboard boxes to store your holiday decorations. Start collecting shipping boxes that are sturdy and durable to use when you put any decorations away. You can also call your local grocery store to see if they have any boxes they would like to get rid of.

Under a Bed

One of my favorite solutions is storing Christmas decorations in creative places like under the bed. It’s an empty space that is usually unused during the entire year, so why not take advantage of that?

There is no need to take up precious real estate in your attic or closet when you can tuck away ornaments and Christmas lights under your bed or a spare bed in a guest room.

My favorite tool for under-the-bed storage is wheeled plastic containers. They are spacious and since they’re mobile, they are easy to grab when it’s time to start decorating. If that’s not in your budget, cardboard boxes that will fit under the bed will also work, since climate control isn’t an issue.

Don’t have space for boxes or plastic containers? Take a tip from your college dorm days and use bed risers. This will lift your bed up a few extra inches to give you more storage space underneath.

In a Basement or Garage

If none of the above options work for storing your Christmas decorations in, the basement or garage may be your next best option.

While it’s not my favorite solution, it will do just fine if you use those climate control containers. This means investing in plastic storage totes with locking lids. Since most basements and garages tend to be damp, using good-quality containers will keep your decorations from getting damaged.

Another downside is the possibility of rodents, however, if you are using plastic totes with locking lids, they will not be able to get inside and do any damage.

holiday totes organized in an attic copy

Storage Setups

When storing anything in your basement or garage, look for an area that is up and off the ground. This will keep any moisture out of the tubs.

You can use a simple shelving unit being sure it is durable enough to stand up under the weight of full totes. The best part of these shelves is they will fit in a corner taking up little space and will also keep the totes up off the ground.

You can use plastic pallets as a base and stack your totes on top of them.

If the ground is not an option you can look for a hanging system. This setup will do best in a garage as it gives you the storage space you need without taking space away from where you park your car.

Holiday Decoration Storage Tips

Once you have decided on a location, you can not finish your setup by using any or all of these tips.

Tip #1. Designate

With any of the storage options above, it is important to designate specific spaces for your seasonal decorations. Instead of storing ornaments and garland in with your Christmas china, try to segment out your decorations, giving each category it’s own box. This will help you to find specific items more easily.

  • Ceramic items
  • Cloth items
  • Dishes
  • Tree ornaments
  • Garland
  • Lights
  • Glass
  • Books, movies
  • Decorations for a specific area

Remember, the haphazardness and disorganization of tossing things in a box now will only lead to anxiety next year at decorating time. That is why I want to encourage you to take the time to streamline things as you are putting them away.

Yes, it will take a bit more time but trust me, you will be so happy next year when you are ready to decorate once again. And, since you have everything out on display now, you can do a visual inventory of what you have so you can more easily decide on what containers you need and how many.

Tip #2. Use the best container

Years ago, our options for storing items was very limited but lucky for us, today, that has all changed. Now you can find specific organizers for your decorations that are meant to house these delicate items in the safest way. Let’s go over a few ideas that you may want to consider.

Ornament storage – You can either chose plastic ornament totes allowing you to stack things without risking damage, or canvas ornament bags that are easier to move around.

Wreath storage – Again you have a plastic tote option or a much more affordable canvas wreath bag.

Tree Storage – I just love these vertical bags as they allow you to keep the decorations on your tree, saving a big step! If you prefer to take the ornaments off and store them separately, you can use a duffle-style storage bag instead.

Tip :3. Organize your totes 

This tip will all depend on how you like your decorations organized. Basically, you have two options here. Read them both and chose which one works the best for you. Or you can do a mixture of both options if that is what you like.

Option #1. Set up each tote to hold the same items. This will allow you to find whatever it is you need when you are decorating your home.

A few ideas are:

  • Wreaths
  • Bows
  • Garland
  • Holiday Pillows
  • Ornaments
  • Wall hangings
  • Knick Knacks
Christmas Room Interior Design, Xmas Tree Decorated By Lights Presents Gifts Toys, Candles And Garland Lighting Indoors Fireplace

Option #2. Set up a tote for each area. If you love to do a holiday scene you can put all the pieces for that one display into a tote of its own. This will really help you to decorate each area more quickly.

A few ideas are:

  • Holiday village display
  • Mantel
  • Kitchen counter display
  • Christmas tree decorations
  • Bedroom display
  • Family room decorations
  • Kid-friendly decorations

Another tip is to take a photograph of the finished display so you remember what you put where.

a close up image of christmas town display

Tip #4. Stop Tangled Lights for Good!

There is nothing so frustrating than a tangled set of lights, and if you use this next tip, you will never need to worry about them again!

When you take your lights down this year, wrap them around a piece of cardboard tucking the end in when you are done. This super simple (and free) tip is all you need to ensure your holiday twinkle lights stay tangle-free next year. Be sure to label each piece of cardboard so you know where the lights go, another tip that will save you so much time when you decorate again.

If you are not a fan of this cardboard tip you can purchase light organizers that are just for holiday twinkle lights.

Tip #4. Label Everything

Along the same vein, don’t forget to label everything — and I mean everything.

This one tip alone will make your life easier each season. My best advice for you is to invest in a good label maker. This was one of my first organizing purchases and it was, quite possibly, the best investment I made.

Labels are the key to any of your new systems working for the long haul. Trust me, you will never remember 12 months from now that you stored your Santa Collection in that big blue tote.

Take a few seconds to make a label and relax, knowing this organizing project is completely done. 

Storing your Christmas Decorations doesn’t have to be frustrating or overwhelming. With some simple planning and the proper tools are your disposal, you can set yourself up for Christmas season success year after year!

Do you have any tips on how to store holiday decorations? Please share in the comments below!

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