undecoratingYesterday we celebrated Christmas. Are you removing the Christmas decorations today? Or, do you wait until Epiphany or Twelfth Night?

Either way, the tree must be unadorned. The things we carefully placed to put us in the holiday spirit must be stored until next year.

Exhaustion has swallowed the enthusiasm we experienced setting up and the task of taking down decorations can be depressing. Still, the job must be done and being systematic with undecorating can make the decorating task go faster next year.

Try these eight tips to ensure everything you take down this year is in good condition and ready to be displayed next year.

  1. Start by deciding whether you’ll use the Swiss cheese method or devote an entire day to the task. Me, I prefer the Swiss cheese method. I gather things into one spot before I begin loading my plastic containers.
  1. Dismantle holiday displays and pack them up according to specific areas of the home.
  1. Store decorations in plastic containers marked with the location for the decorations.
  1. Launder fabric items before you put away. Always make sure the items are completely dry before packing them up. Oversized zip-top bags or vacuum bags work perfectly for storage. Or place folded items in one plastic container.
  1. Bows made from wire-edged ribbon should be gently loaded into plastic containers. Wads of tissue paper stuffed in the loops will help keep their shape while in storage. Even if they get a bit smashed, they can easily be refreshed for next year.
  1. Wrap fragile ornaments in tissue paper or bubble wrap from holiday deliveries and gifts if you did not save the original packaging for storage. Plastic ornament boxes with dividers are a great investment. It makes undecorating the tree go quickly and delicate ornaments are well protected.
  1. Light strings, either indoor or outdoor, should be wound and stored in individual zip-lock bags to prevent tangles.
  1. Outdoor displays should be covered in large, heavy-duty contractor bags that can be used more than once.

Can you add any tips you have for undecorating? If so, share in the comments.