The Best Storage Solutions for All Your Holiday Gear

When it's time to take down the tinsel, lights, ornaments, and garlands, these DIY storage ideas will keep the holidays from taking over your home for the rest of the year.
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How to Store Holiday Decorations

Taking down the Christmas decorations is always a bit sad. On top of that, storing the lights and ornaments can turn into a complex puzzle with tangled strands and delicate baubles. Make this downer of a task less of a hassle. Safely store decorations and keep them out of the way with these smart holiday storage hacks.

Protect Fragile Ornaments

Hang on to gift and shipping boxes and use them to store tree ornaments. Delicate glass and ceramic pieces can be stored in reused tissue paper or packaging materials. Alternatively, you can hot-glue plastic cups to cardboard sheets, and then place the sheets into a larger bin for a zero-risk solution.

Label the Boxes

When you’re boxing up decorations, make an inventory of what’s in each box and label accordingly. Come next year, you’ll be able to unpack the exact decorations you need, cutting down on setup time.

Nestle Ornaments

Don’t throw out the egg cartons after baking your holiday cookies. Use them to store small or round ornaments. You can place multiple cartons in a larger box and hide them on a shelf or under the bed.

Related: 10 Ways to Decorate Your Xmas Tree for Under $10

Reuse Apple Containers

If egg cartons are too small to hold your Christmas ornaments, here’s a roomier alternative: plastic apple containers. Rinse and dry the apple containers, then nestle ornaments inside, close the lid, and place the plastic box gently into a cardboard box or Rubbermaid bin for extra protection.

Related: 8 Things You Never Even Knew About Christmas Trees

Reclaim Underbed Storage

No room left in the basement for your extensive collection of holiday garlands? Why not try hiding them under the bed? An underbid shoe storage solution can be repurposed to keep garlands, ornaments, bows or ribbons out of the way until you need them next year.

Wrap Your Tree

What’s the secret to storing an unruly artificial tree? This blogger believes the answer is plastic wrap. While many artificial trees come with a storage bag, it’s not always easy to get the branches to fit inside the bag. In such cases, you can restrain branches with plastic wrap, belts, or wide ribbons, to make sliding a tree into the storage case an effortless task.

Zip 'Em Up

If you love a color-coordinated tree, separate your ornaments before you put them away. Ornaments of a single color can be stored in a ziplock bag—just be sure not to pack bags too tight or you may discover cracked or smashed ornaments when you unbox your decorations next year.

Make a Book of Cards

If you can’t part with this year’s holiday cards but find yourself stuffing them into overcrowded junk drawers, here’s a better solution. Take a hole punch to the edges and bind the stack of cards together using metal rings. Pack them away with the holiday decorations and display them on the coffee table next year.

Round Up Wrapping Paper

Plastic bag dispensers can be easily repurposed to hold wrapping paper tubes. Tack the dispensers to the wall of the craft room, the inside of a closet door, or anywhere they’ll be out of the way until next year’s gift exchange.

Related: 13 Better-Than-Gift-Wrap Ideas for Packaging Presents

Stash Wrapping Paper and Supplies via frankfarm

Store wrapping paper rolls in that unused space at the top of a closet—up by the ceiling! Create this smart storage solution by using only anchors, screws, and some galvanized wire. You can keep ribbon smash-free in the closet, too, by using a tie hanger.

Related: 8 Clever Ways to Reuse Wrapping Paper

Stow String Lights

Face it, you’re never going to get those strands back in the box they came in—so save those shipping boxes and make your own storage panels. Just cut a slot on either side of a piece of cardboard, stick the plug in one, wrap the lights around the center, and secure the end in the opposite slot. This approach also works for garlands, beads, and other long, tangle-prone decorations.

Related: 12 Christmas Tree Decorating Fails

Wrap a Hanger

Here’s another option for taming strands of Christmas lights. Select a plastic hanger with indentations for sleeves (smooth hangers won’t keep lights in place), then loosely wrap lights around the hanger. Make sure to leave the two-prong plug hanging out—that way you’ll be able to plug in the strand to check for burned out lights before you unwrap the whole thing.

Wrap Up Wreaths and Garlands

Insert the wreath into a heavy-duty garbage bag, then store by hanging on a clothes rack, in a closet, or on a garage wall. Your wreath or garland won’t get crushed, and you’re free from having to spend money on a unitasking wreath case!

Hide It All Away

Once you’ve got everything stashed away and protected, stack them against the garage wall or consider building a sliding storage system along the garage or basement ceiling to take advantage of your unused space.

Related: 9 Tips and Tricks to Cut the Christmas Clutter

Safe Keepings

Don’t worry about finding shattered ornaments and tangled lights next year. Safely stash your holiday decorations with these handy tips.