The Joyful Sort How To: Organize Holiday Decor

We’re still in the thick of the holiday season, but January will be here before we know it and soon enough it will be time to pack up all of that holiday decor for another year. As tempting as it may be to throw things into bins or boxes willy-nilly in your state of post-holiday exhaustion, your future self will thank you for not having to untangle lights or dig through broken ornament pieces next year. Here are a few of my favorite tips for an organized approach to un-decking your halls:

The Joyful Sort - Professional Organizer - Columbus, Ohio - Blog - Holiday Organization

Break it down.

Just as with any other organizing project, start with breaking this one down into smaller, more manageable pieces. Pick one category (for example, focusing only on outdoor decor pieces or on ornaments to start) or room and pull all of the decor down to one spot. I personally like packing things away by room because it means that when it’s time to merry up our house next year, I can do it in phases and not feel like I’m on the verge of a panic attack because there are boxes and bins and things everywhere I look. Bonus tip: snap a quick Before photo of each room for easy decorating next year!

The Joyful Sort - Professional Organizer - Columbus, Ohio - Blog - Holiday Organization


Don’t allocate valuable storage space to items that you no longer need, use, or love! As you’re pulling your seasonal items together, do some editing along the way - say goodbye to anything that you didn’t end up using this year, start a donation bin for gently used items that may no longer fit your taste or the setup of your home, and toss broken items or any items that may have long seen better days. If you do need or want to replace a particular item, this is a great time to take advantage of post-season clearance sales, or simply get a head start on your inventory list and budget for next year by jotting down a few notes as you go.

Invest to de-stress.

Unless your home is like a real life Christmastown (and if it is, hey - you do you!), holiday decor items are typically packed away in storage for a majority of the year. Many of these items, such as ornaments and books, are sentimental, so this is one area where I recommend investing in the right storage solutions up front if you can. I’ve linked some of my favorite holiday storage basics below, but try to shop your home as well - Ziploc baggies work great for smaller items that are less fragile (we use them for the bead garland and jingle bells that hang on each of my boys’ mini trees in their rooms) and all of those Amazon boxes piled up in your garage would make great DIY a light reels!

Label, label, label.

It’s like Buddy the Elf said: “The best way to spread Christmas cheer is by singing loud for all to hear…how important it is to clearly label seasonal decor bins.” (also, hey, what’s your favorite color?). I tend to find over-labeling to look a little messy (yes, I have a clear acrylic egg holder, but, no, it does not say “eggs’ on it because it’s pretty evident at a glance exactly what belongs there), but for longer-term storage items such as these that only make an appearance once a year, detailed labels are key. No matter how carefully and intentionally you may pack away your seasonal items into separate bins, you’re still bound to end up rifling through every last one to find what you need if they’re all labeled “Christmas”. I made these simple labels in Word, saved a template so that I can edit from year-to-year as needed, and adhere them to the inside of the bin once it’s packed up and ready for storage.

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Putting a little thought into how you pack up your holiday decor this year not only means time saved next year, it also helps start the fresh new year ahead off on the right foot. Have a wonderful rest of your 2018, friends!