Where and How to Store Your Christmas Decorations

Admittedly, it’s a sad time of year when Christmas decorations need to be cleaned up, packed away, and returned to their place in storage. They bring so much joy to the house, creating bright colours and movement, such that it is always a bit painful to take them all down when January 6th rolls around (yes, that’s the official day Christmas decorations are supposed to be taken down, coinciding with the day the Three Kings are said to have arrived in Bethlehem).

Then again, if we left these decorations up for the entire year, then they would certainly lose their appeal, and we would likely all be made sick at the sight of them. We want to reserve these decorations for when they are most appreciated and needed, and that’s from around the end of November through to the beginning of January. The rest of the year, these items need to be kept carefully in storage, ready for their reappearance next Christmas.

Now that 2020 has arrived, we at Sentinel Storage thought it was a good opportunity to arm you with the storage tips necessary to maximize your use of storage space for your Christmas decorations, while also keeping them properly protected until then.

Preparing your decorations for storage

As a first step towards storing your Christmas decorations, you should focus on cleaning and repairing any decorations that have been broken, or making note of decorations that need to be replaced for next year. Create a list to keep track of everything easily. Chances are, there is little cleaning to do here, but focusing on whether decorations could use a clean will also make it easier to uncover any damages.

The same thing goes for your lights: replace any bulbs that are burnt out now, and dispose of any lines that have stopped working. There’s nothing worse than getting your Christmas decorations out next year, only to find half of your lights don’t work anymore. Fix the problem now, while you’re not rushing to get the decorations up next November. Fixing these issues now will also likely save you a bit of money, as decorations will be on sale in January, rather than ahead of the season next November.

Packing lights and ornaments

Christmas lights can be the biggest pain. They love to tangle themselves into massive balls that are near-impenetrable. To avoid this, use an old coffee can or create your own reel out of cardboard, by cutting out grooves on either side of the cardboard, and then wrapping the lights around it, inserting the line into the cut grooves. For lights that are fragile, wrap the reel of lights in a clean paper before storing it in a box. Crumple additional paper in between reels in the box for even more protection.

Ornaments are not nearly as painful to deal with than lights, but they are often not replaceable. Ornaments are frequently family heirlooms or handmade by members of the family: they carry sentimental value that is essentially irreplaceable. What’s more, is that they are always of many shapes and sizes, making them seem difficult to pack.

Line the bottom of a box with crushed paper, and then individually wrap each ornament in paper, placing them in the box. Begin with the heaviest and most durable ornaments in the bottom of the box, leaving light and fragile ones for the top of the box. Add more crumpled paper to fill the box entirely, especially in the corners, to improve the box’s sturdiness. Seal the box tight, and be sure to label it appropriately.

Dealing with trees

If your family went natural, then getting rid of the tree simply involves finding out which day of the week is the collection day in your neighbourhood, and then sweeping/vacuuming residual needles. We know you don’t need our help for that one, as much as you may want us by for the sweeping...

On the other hand, if your family has an artificial tree, then storage for that tree is required, and that can take a lot of space. Firstly, always try to keep the tree’s original box, and return the tree to it when it’s time to put everything away – that’s the best plan for an artificial tree, in terms of maximizing the space used for it.

Of course, if the box was thrown away or is in disrepair, then a new box (or boxes) will be required. Unlike ornaments, an artificial tree is not incredibly fragile, and will not require you to cover in paper or bubble wrap, but it would need to be boxed, and protected (at the very least) from getting dusty and dirty.

If you have the space though, we suggest storing artificial trees fully assembled, with their lights still weaved in place on the branches. This makes life a lot easier for next year, but it does take up much more space. This is the best plan for an artificial tree, in terms of saving time and energy. If this plan is possible, do cover the tree with a tarp or plastic sheet to keep the tree free from dust.

Gone ‘til November

Christmas decorations make houses very happy during the holiday season, but when it is time to put them away, they can take up a lot of space in your house. Self storage offers an economical solution to this issue, and keeps your Christmas decorations out of the way of your family’s day-to-day lives the rest of the year. What you really want on January 6th is to see your Christmas decorations gone ‘til November – and that’s exactly what self storage can provide.

Sentinel Storage offers elite self storage solutions throughout the year, and we can happily make your Christmas decorations disappear until you need them again. Speak with your Sentinel Storage advisor today for more information on how to store your Christmas decorations or for any of your self storage needs.