Holiday Decor {I Just Couldn’t Resist!}

posted by Andrea | 11/26/2010

It’s the day after Thanksgiving — a.k.a. Black Friday.

Normally, I would spend this day shopping for great bargains or putting up Christmas decorations — often times I’d do both.

However, this year, I told myself I would do NEITHER.

Since we’re moving in just a few weeks, I figured there was absolutely no point in putting up my holiday decor or buying anything else {even if it was an excellent deal} …after all, I’m just being practical right?

While I did NOT venture out to even one store today, I did break down and put up just a few pieces of my Christmas decor.

I just couldn’t resist!

Don’t these trees just look adorable on my bright red hutch? {Notice the lack of dishes inside — yup, they’re all packed away.}

So now my kitchen has a little bit of Christmas cheer. And since my office is right off the kitchen, I can see the little trees all day long — perfect!

Now, for those of you who aren’t moving or boycotting your holiday decor…

…here are a few tips to keep things simple and organized:

1. Get it all out:

One of the easiest ways for me to stay organized is to see everything I have, all in one place.

If possible, lay out all your holiday decor in your basement, living room, or garage {if it’s not too cold}. If you have too much to lay out — make sure you read #3 below!

2. Display the things you LOVE:

I always start with the living room, family room, and dinning room since those are the areas most people see. I put up the tree and tree trimmings and then move around the room deciding where I want to put everything else.

After the main areas are full of Christmas cheer, I move onto bedrooms, bathrooms, etc. I don’t do a lot in these spaces — but I like a little something in every room!

3. Donate or trash anything you don’t use:

Now that all your rooms are decorated the way you want, what’s left over? Anything?

If so, I challenge you to get rid of EVERY item you know you won’t use, and anything that has overstayed it’s welcome. I say “challenge” because I know this will be difficult for many of you. But just think for a moment, is it really worth storing all the stuff you aren’t using for an entire year just to see if you might use it next year?

Probably not!

Plus, if you donate it now, someone else might have time to snatch it up and use it in their home this year.

4. Take pictures:

You’ll save lots of time next year by snapping a few photos of your holiday decor this year.

I learned this trick from my mom — she used to take several pictures of each room so she could remember how she decorated each year. Then she would store the pictures with her Christmas decor so the following year wouldn’t be as time-consuming.

Now that pictures are digital, I just store them on my computer and then each year, I can refer back to how I’ve done it in the past. I usually change things up a bit every year, but I still find it helpful to have these pictures.

5. Use large tubs and labels:

I store all my holiday decor in clear plastic tubs with tight-fitting lids. I bought a bunch when they went on sale at Target, so they all look uniform!

Then I use labels on the front of each tub to record the contents. I store my decorations by type {tree-trimmings, greenery/berries, home decor, Christmas dishes} but you could also store them by room.

In my opinion, tubs are the best, most organized, way to store holiday decor. Plus, the labels make it so easy to find exactly what I need when it’s time to put up {or pack up} my decor each year.

Now, if you’re honest with yourself…and follow these steps {especially #3} your holiday decorating process should be quite simple and organized this year {or at least next year!!}

What about you?

What tips do you have to simplify and organize your holiday decor?

Christmas is only 30 days away!

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13 comments

  1. Kelly Morris

    11/26/2010

    I love your trees on the red hutch! Too cute!

    Totally agree, display what you love and pitch the rest!

    [Reply]

  2. The Gaertegang

    11/27/2010

    OOOOOOOHHHHHHH MY! I am in LOVE with that red hutch!!! Where did you get it? It would look perfect in my dream home when we move in!!!!!! I agree with all your tips….and I look forward to hearing more about your moving process so I can make mine even smoother as well! I got a lot of pre-moving cleaning out clutter today! It felt soooo good! Almost addicting if you know what I mean!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Isn’t that hutch great!!
    I actually got it off Craigslist {no surprise there!} but it was in pretty bad condition. I had to fix it up, sand it down, put a back on it, and paint it to get what I wanted. Maybe I should do another post about that!!
    Oh, and congrats on clearing some of your clutter. I DO know how good that feels! I boxed up a bunch of stuff today — reality is really starting to sink in!

    [Reply]

  3. Jill

    11/29/2010

    Thanks for the great tips. I have been downsizing every year, but I think this year will be the most dramatic.

    My big house suddenly feels very small with the thought of where everything should go. Each year I rotate what gets center stage on my mantle. This year it is nutcrackers. Last year it was snowmen. I donate a basket of themed decorations to the Women’s Silent auction each year.

    My biggest dilemma is what to do with the huge assortment of village pieces I have collected. I have visions of twinkling lights under the tree but with a 2 year old, that is not possible. Any suggestions?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Jill, yay for downsizing!
    For some reason, it is SO easy to accumulate tons of holiday decorations! And we only use them for a month or 2 and then put them back in storage. Seems kind of silly…but I do it too!

    My advice for your village pieces {and the rest of your holiday decor} would be to decide whether they cause you stress and/or feel like a burden. If the answer is “yes”, then I would look into donating them or selling them. If the answer is “no” then find a spot where you can display them and get rid of something else.

    Personally, I don’t decorate with any small pieces {like the villages} because they overwhelm me! However, I do like the looks of them. Could you display them on an entryway table or other location that is too high for your 2 year old to reach?

    [Reply]

    Jill Reply:

    Update: I donated some unused decorations to a friend who doesn’t have any decorations. (She just moved into her own apartment). The village has stayed in the boxed at least for a couple more years.

    We also put up 3 small table top trees instead of the big one. Each of my boys will put there ornaments on their own tree. Hopefully that will keep the 2 year old out of them.

    I have told family members that I am no longer collecting holiday decorations. I am happy with what I have.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Awesome Jill!
    I bet it feels good to get rid of some of your clutter — especially now that you’ve helped someone else in the process…thanks for sharing!
    Oh, and good idea to let your family know that you aren’t collecting anymore :)

    [Reply]

  4. Heather @ Mrs. Southern Bride

    11/30/2010

    I love that red hutch! Gorgeous!

    I just wanted to say that I found your web site last week, and have been reading through many of your posts! You have encouraged, and inspired me to focus more on organizing our home. In fact, after reading a few of your posts, I promptly went to my kitchen,and spent some time organizing! Thank you so much for sharing such great tips. Blessings!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Heather!

    This is a great time of year to tackle the kitchen too…

    Happy Organizing!

    [Reply]

  5. Maria

    11/30/2010

    Wow, what a gorgeous red hutch…I would want to decorate it too!

    I can’t believe your found it on Craigslist!

    Good luck with your big move. I can’t wait to read all about it…love your blog!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Maria, I do feel a little better knowing I have one area that looks like Christmas!

    [Reply]

  6. Betsy (Eco-novice)

    12/07/2010

    I also love the red hutch and those trees atop. I agree that bins are the best way to store, well, most everything! I like using the red bins with green lids for Christmas stuff — makes them so easy to find (I have LOTS of bins in the garage).

    [Reply]

  7. Packing Up Christmas in 2 SIMPLE Steps « Simple Organized Living at Keep It Simple "On The Web"

    01/03/2011

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