Toi Degree: Organizational tips for putting away Christmas decorations

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 24, 2022

We are about to wrap up the holiday season, so now it’s time to pack everything away. And if you are like me and many others, you have more to pack away than you started with. I am that after-Christmas shopper in preparation for next Christmas person, and I know I am not alone.

Since you may have a bit more now than what you started with, organization is important. Here are some ways to organize those decorations so that next year you won’t regret not doing it the year before.

  • Store wreaths on a coat rack — this may sound crazy, but just hear me out. Sew Many Ways suggests attaching your wreathes to hangers and hanging them on a coat rack. Cover each wreath with a plastic bag to protect them from dust.
  • Store ornaments by color — If you have non-breakable ornaments, consider storing them in clear bins by color. This makes it super simple to find the right ornaments for the tree or garland you’re setting up.
  • Use hanging dividers for Christmas lights — To keep your lights tangle free, try this tip from Lowe’s. Bundle each string of lights with a Velcro fastener or zip tie. Then, label them according to their use. Store each bundle in a hanging closet organizer to keep them separated.
  • Create a Christmas decorating toolbox — Are you always searching for the right string and tape when putting up your Christmas decor? Another tip from Lowe’s suggests creating a Christmas decorating toolbox. You’ll have all the supplies you need in one container: extra bulbs, batteries, ornament hooks, and whatever else you need.
  • Protect glass ornaments with coffee filters — This is a simple and affordable hack from the DIY Network. Coffee filters are soft, flexible, and cheap, making them the perfect dividers for your breakable ornaments. Use several layers of filters with each ornament for extra padding.
  • Store ornaments in empty egg cartons — Here’s another free way to store your ornaments — egg cartons! This idea is from Fun in the Making. No need to buy fancy ornament storage boxes when you can just raid your fridge. They will also stack very easily on top of one another without taking up much space.
  • Store your artificial tree in cardboard tubes – Here’s a simple idea to keep your artificial tree parts from getting smashed and damaged in a bin. The Family Handyman suggests using two or three 8-in.-diameter concrete form tubes, available at a home improvement store. Then, wrap each layer of the tree in twine and shove them down each tube. Mark the layer numbers on each tube so you know which order to put them together when it’s time to set up the tree again.
  • Use detailed labels for your Christmas bins — Attach labels to your bins and write down every item that’s stored in that particular bin. No more rummaging around for that certain snowman figurine or opening every single bin to locate the Christmas stockings. I Heart Organizing even offers free printables if you would like to use their label design.
  • Make your own ornament organizer box — One Good Thing by Jillee made her own ornament organizer box using plastic cups and a storage bin. Cut two pieces of cardboard to size so they fit nicely in the bin. Then using a hot glue gun, attach the plastic cups to each piece of cardboard. Layer the cupboards in the bin.
  • Wrap Christmas lights on pieces of cardboard — There’s nothing worse than tangled Christmas lights. This easy and cheap idea from A Real Life Housewife ensures your lights will be nicely organized and knot free for next year. Wrap each strand around a piece of cardboard, then tuck them in a box side by side. Voilà!

Of course, there are many other ways that you can organize and plenty of storage bins that you can use. Hopefully, you will find these useful, and who knows, you might just discover one of your own. Regardless of what method you use, the main objective is to get your decorations packed away neat and orderly now so they will be easily assessable for the year to come.

Toi N. Degree is family and consumer education agent for North Carolina Cooperative Extension Rowan County Center. Contact her at 704-216-8970 or

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