Moving and Packing Tips

How to Store Christmas Decorations – The Complete Guide

Every year, as the festive season comes to an end, people are faced with the daunting task of putting away their Christmas decorations. It can be a tricky task, especially if you have a lot of decorations. However, it’s possible to store them safely and make sure they last for years to come. 

So, if you:

  • Are planning to put away your Christmas decorations;
  • Don’t know how and where to store your holiday decorations and need some organisational tips;
  • Want to preserve your precious ornaments and magnificent garlands;

Then this post is just right for you! Keep reading to find out how to store your Christmas decorations.

How to store an artificial Christmas tree

Many people like the convenience of artificial Christmas trees – they are durable, can be reused and don’t look any worse than the real trees. However, storing an artificial Christmas tree can be problematic if you don’t have enough space.

Step 1. Choose a storage space

First things first, think about the place that is big enough to store your Christmas tree. Some of the most common storage places at home include the attic, under-bed space, storage closets, as well as other spacious areas like a shed or a garage. 

Make sure that your tree will be protected from direct sunlight and humidity. The optimal storage temperature for an artificial Christmas tree is between 5 to 30 degrees Celsius.

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Step 2. Remove all decorations

Start by removing all ornaments and decorations from your Christmas tree. Unless your tree is pre-lit, you would want to remove the lights, too. Set the decorations aside to avoid crushing them while you pack your tree.

As you are taking the tree down, go ahead and wipe the branches with a cloth or a light brush to remove all the piled up dust, glitter and loose artificial needles. You can even spray some water (unless your tree is pre-lit) for a more thorough cleaning. However, make sure to let the Christmas tree dry before packing, as the moisture can provoke mould growth. 

Step 3. Disassemble the tree

The first thing you need to do before disassembling your Christmas tree is to locate any damaged elements, like branches and bulbs. It is much easier to fix any issues with your tree now, rather than in the next holiday season. 

Next, start folding the smaller branches towards the main branch. That way you will prevent them from bending in the wrong direction. Once you are done with this step, you can start disassembling the tree by sections.

Smaller Christmas trees usually consist of one piece. Larger ones, on the other hand, are composed of several parts. Moving from top to bottom, remove the tree sections one by one. For pre-lit trees, make sure that your tree is unplugged before taking any of the sections off. 

Step 4. Wrap and bag your Christmas tree up

To keep the tree intact, you will need to compress the tree branches. Ideally, to do that you will need to have some plastic stretch wrap. If you don’t have any on your hands, don’t be afraid to improvise. Several plastic bags and a good old duct tape will do the job. 

What you would want to do is to tightly wrap each section of the tree, starting from the bottom of the section that way, so the branches are tightly secured to the stem. Now, your Christmas tree is ready to be stored in a box or a storage bag.

Need some extra storage space? Learn what storage solutions we offer in your area.

How to store Christmas lights

Ah, Christmas lights. Nobody likes to face the struggle of untangling the mess the lights turn into each year. Proper storage helps maintain the condition of your Christmas lights and eliminates the need to buy new lights every year.

The best way to store your Christmas lights is to wrap them around a cardboard cut-out:

  1. Get a piece of cardboard that suits your needs and cut a slit in one end;
  2. Slide the end of your string lights in the slit and start wrapping the lights around the cardboard;
  3. Once you finish wrapping, tuck the loose end under the cords;
  4. For additional damage protection, you can wrap the lights with soft paper tissue or bubble wrap. 

If you don’t have any cardboard, you can wrap the lights around something flat and sturdy, like a coat hanger or a plastic lid.

Best way to store icicle lights

If you have icicle lights, you might find the wrapping method not as sufficient as it is for the regular string lights. However, there is a simple trick that will allow you to store icicle lights without tangling. For the following method, you will need to have a roll of plastic sheeting:

  1. Roll the sheeting out and place your icicle lights along the length of it; 
  2. While you are spreading the lights, make sure to check for any tangles and knots; 
  3. Once you are done with that, start rolling the sheeting back; 
  4. In the end, you should have a roll with your icicle lights neatly situated in-between the layers of plastic sheeting;
  5. Tie the roll with a knot or place it in a container to avoid unwrapping.  

If you don’t have any plastic sheeting on your hands, you can always use some old bedsheets that aren’t in use anymore. 

How to store Christmas ornaments

Christmas lights aren’t the only thing that you need to worry about when it comes to Christmas decor storage. Many of us have a large collection of tree ornaments, which also require special care. So, how do you keep them safe and secure?

Prepare your storage boxes

Christmas ornaments are one of those few items that are best kept in their original packaging. They are shaped perfectly to prevent damage and hold the ornaments snuggly inside. So, if you happen to have the original boxes saved, use those to store your Christmas ornaments.

If you aren’t a box-saver, you might consider getting a box specially designed to hold your Christmas ornaments. They usually come in different shares and sizes, so you can easily pick ones that fit your storage space. Other than that, you can always use an empty box that can fit your decorations. 

Pick a marker and create some labels to differentiate the boxes from each other. Next year, when the holidays come, it will be easier to identify your ornaments’ box from the pile of other storage boxes in the attic.

Sort the ornaments out

When preparing your Christmas ornaments for storage, start by going over your ornaments and picking the broken or damaged ones out. While you are doing that, you can also divide the ornaments into categories, like fragile items, plastic ornaments, etc. 

Pack the ornaments in the boxes

Now, when it’s time to start organising ornaments into boxes, you need to make sure that once the ornaments are inside, they will hold until the next year without breaking. Here are some of the DIY storage options for Christmas tree ornaments:

  • Before packing glass, ceramic and other fragile ornaments, wrap them individually with bubble wrap. To avoid single-use, don’t throw away the bubble wrap next time you take your ornaments out. Or if the idea of purchasing bubble wrap isn’t your favourite, you can reuse leftover wrapping paper from this year or use some tissue paper.
  • Flat and not-so-fragile ornaments can go into plastic ziplock bags. Place some bubble wrap inside the bag for extra cushioning.
  • Keep round ornaments in egg cartons or apple containers. Your fragile ornaments can easily nestle in these containers until the next Christmas.
  • Do you have an old poster tube that hasn’t been used in a while? Use it to stack smaller round ornaments. Or create one with some paper, sellotape and a kitchen roll tube.
  • Unusually shaped ornaments can be tricky to store, especially when you’re trying to fit them in a box, together with mainly round and oval ornaments. You can decide to keep them separate from the round items or pack them that way, so the packaging material will create a rounder shape around them. That way it will be easier to store them with the rest of your ornaments.
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How to store Christmas wreaths and garlands

Let’s not forget about your Christmas wreaths and garlands. These amazing decoration pieces also need their portion of TLC. Below, we discuss how you can store Christmas garlands and wreaths, so when the time comes, you will pull out your decorations looking fresh and fluffy. 

First things first – clean your decorations. You might not even notice it, but while the decorations were out on your bannister, doorway, or mantel, they likely collected a decent amount of dust. So, once you take the garlands off, grab a wet rag and wipe off the dust thoroughly. Allow them to dry before packing. Additionally, you can wrap the decorations in tissue paper to preserve needles and leaves from damage while not in use. 

The best way to store your garlands and wreaths is to keep them in a sturdy box or a plastic container. They are commonly available in any hardware store or supermarket. Sturdy boxes will protect your garlands from getting deformed in case anything heavy lands on the decorations. 

Running out of storage space for your Christmas decorations?

Why not move everything into a storage unit? Fantastic Services offers short-term and long-term storage options for those of you, who are in need of additional storage space. Regardless of the temperature shifts outside, your household belongings will be safe in clean damp-proof crates. The storage facility has surveillance systems to monitor your belongings and provide peace of mind to you. 

Additionally, if you are struggling with packing, the skilled removal specialists can provide you with wrapping materials and even do the packing for you. Store away what you won’t be needing until the next year rolls around, get your secured storage service today!

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  • Start by removing all of your decorations and cleaning the dust off of them.
  • Prepare your wrapping materials. If you want to avoid single-use packing materials, you can always use seasonal linens as cushioning for your decorations.
  • Christmas ornaments are best stored in their original packaging. However, if you didn’t save the packaging, wrap the ornaments in tissue paper or bubble wrap. Once they are packed, place them in a storage solution of your choice.
  • Wrap your Christmas lights around something flat and sturdy, like cardboard or a clothes hanger.
  • Shrink-wrap your Christmas tree to save some storage space and preserve the tree from accumulating dust;
  • Wreaths and garlands should be kept in firm containers that will protect them from getting smashed.


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Image source: Shutterstock / Shyntartanya

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