How to Pack Holiday Ornaments

No one likes to think about the end of the holidays before they’ve even begun. But as we get closer to the new year, it’s time to start thinking about packing away the wreaths and lights until next winter.

Packing Christmas decorations isn’t something we often think of as a top priority. But there’s nothing worse than busting out your holiday lights and decorations only to find them tangled or smashed to pieces.

As experts in all things packing and moving, we’ve nailed down the best way to pack holiday ornaments. Whether you’re packing for a move or packing up for the season, do future-you the favor of doing it right. It’ll save you time, money and major headaches when the holidays come around next year.

Step 1: Get Your Supplies Together

First things first, you need to stock up on supplies. Before you rush to the store, you might already have everything you need on hand. Instead of throwing away piles of wrapping paper after opening presents Christmas morning, give it a second life as packing paper. You can use it as-is, or shred it and use it as filler to protect fragile ornaments. You can also reuse gift boxes, Christmas cookie tins, and egg cartons as storage for smaller items.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Packing paper for wrapping ornaments
  • Cardboard boxes or plastic bins for storage
  • Ziploc bags for ornament hooks
  • Bubble wrap for added protection
  • Tape
  • Marker for labeling bags and boxes
packing supplies, tape and plastic wrap

Step 2: Sort Your Ornaments

Setting up your holiday decorations should be a fun activity, not something that makes you want to pull your hair out. Sorting your ornaments before packing them away is one way to avoid headaches when decorating each year.

You can organize your ornaments in a few different ways:

  • By type (ie. lights, garland, outdoor)
  • By room (ie. family room, kitchen)
  • By display (ie. Christmas tree, mantle display)

By categorizing your ornaments, you’ll know exactly where to look for specific items. No more digging through boxes to find the water skiing Santa you bought in Mexico last summer; he’ll be neatly packed away in a box with all your other souvenir decor.

Step 3: Take Extra Care with Fragile or Difficult Items

Certain items, like delicate Christmas tree ornaments, are more prone to damage than others. Take extra precaution by wrapping them in bubble wrap or tissue before boxing them up, and place hooks in Ziploc bags so you don’t lose them. Egg cartons are also useful for protecting smaller ornaments and holding them in place.

Lights and garland can be tricky, but they don’t need to be a detangling nightmare. You can either buy a ready-made storage solution or, if DIY is more your style, wrap them around an old coffee can or a piece of cardboard. Once secure, wrap the bundle in bubble wrap (if breakable) before storing.

packing Christmas tree ornaments

Step 4: Make Sure Everything is Secured in Place

Now that you’ve organized and wrapped your ornaments, you’re ready to stow them away. Place them carefully in boxes (or bags or bins), and fill any empty spaces with shredded paper or packing peanuts. Make sure everything is secure so it won’t break if the box gets jostled around.

Step 5: Label Everything to Avoid Headaches

Lastly, take time to label the contents of each box. This will make finding specific ornaments a breeze when it comes to setting up next year. You’ll also want to label which boxes contain fragile items, especially if you’re moving. This will offer an extra layer of protection for breakables and ensure your movers know what needs special handling.

Whether it’s a tree ornament from a family vacation or a stuffed snowman you’ve had since childhood, holiday decorations often hold sentimental value. These things are more than just decor — they’re memories of Christmases past. When you pack your ornaments properly, you can rest nestled all snug in your bed knowing that next holiday season, everything will be exactly as you left it.

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