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Tips and tricks for packing up Christmas

Tips and tricks for packing up Christmas

There’s a sense of renewal and fresh starts that packing away the Christmas decorations brings. But it’s definitely a less gleeful task than bringing them out. Thankfully, there are some simple organisational tricks to make the tidying up process more efficient and enjoyable. Here are the ones we’ve found most helpful.

The preparation

Sort through your decs and reject anything that’s broken or no longer works. Similarly, if there are decorations that no longer fit in with your general scheme, consider donating them to a charity.

Be sure to remove any batteries as well, as they might leak or corrode before next December.

Then, lay out all the decorations either by room or type, and keep them in these groups when you pack them up.

The packing

There are plenty of storage options to buy which can make packing away decorations easier – one we like is a soft zipper bauble bag which has layers of individual sections for each bauble. But it’s also worth considering what you can recycle and turn into useful storage props:

  • Egg cartons make great holders for small baubles.
  • A screw-top water bottle is the perfect container for a beaded garland.
  • Freezer bags are useful for glittery decorations that would otherwise shed their sparkle everywhere.
  • A kitchen roll inner makes a good base for wrapping lights around to prevent annoying tangles. Just make a small rip in either end to thread the start and finish of the wires through.

No doubt, you’ll have a few cardboard boxes lingering around from pre-Christmas deliveries, and if they can survive transport, they should be good for containing decorations. Just be aware that cardboard boxes won’t store well in damp places and plastic boxes might be a better option in sheds or garages.

Look out for the cardboard dividers found in boxes used for wine or other fragile items too – they’ll come in handy to safely separate baubles.

Wreaths can be especially cumbersome to pack away. If you don’t still have the original box, consider attaching the wreath to a coat-hanger with twine then covering it in a bin liner or clothes cover and hanging it at the back of a wardrobe for safe keeping.

The tree

Life-like trees can be a challenge to pack away as they never seem to fit back into the slim boxes they first arrived in. To make the task easier, tie the branches snuggly in with ribbon before slipping the tree back in its box.

Removing a real tree can also be a messy job. Cover it first with an old sheet so that it doesn’t drip sap or needles on its way out of the door. And never be tempted to burn a dried-out tree: the oils in many firs are highly flammable and can easily combust. Instead, look out for council recycling schemes where they’ll take away your tree for chipping and reusing as mulch in local parks.

And that’s Christmas packed away for another year!