Feel like holiday decorations are exploding from every nook and cranny in your garage and closets? Perhaps it’s time to re-think your storage solutions. These days, garage storage is as much of a science as it is an art form, and there are plenty of tricks at your disposal.
We assure you that if you work out the storage kinks ahead of time, putting away your holiday decorations will be much less depressing than it already is. Before you get started, we recommend using a clear weather day to de-clutter and clean out your garage if you haven’t done it in a while. It will make it that much easier to design a new storage system for your holiday items.
7 Solutions to Organize Holiday Storage in Your Garage
Here are some of the ideas, gadgets, and tricks we’ve learned over the years, and much of the advice holds true for any seasonal or themed furnishings, accents and toys.
- Install ceiling-to-floor shelving. In truth, this first tip is one we’d advise to just about everyone. Stainless steel storage shelving systems abound and you can often find them used. They are affordable, require virtually zero cleaning or maintenance once installed and will help to get things up and off the floor, with items stored vertically to reduce the impact on your garage square footage. Once installed, you can make an entire section the “holiday décor” station, or you can use the top- or top-two levels to store holiday and other seasonal items that are rarely used during the rest of the year.
- Use a rafter- or ceiling-suspended storage options. One of the best things you can do to store items you don’t use that often is to get them up and out of the way. There are several different rafter- or ceiling suspended storage systems available for this purpose. The higher-end options can be hand or electrically raised and lowered, making it pain-free to load and unload them when you need to.
- Bag up the tree. Does your family use an artificial tree? Go online or to your local hardware store and invest in a high-quality roller bag designated to store a tree of your size. That saves the hassle of setting it up and breaking it down each year. When everything is zippered up tight, storage bags are the easiest way to keep your tree looking its best, free from dust, debris or pests. If you have a small tree and/or you’re small enough, the tree can be stored on a piece of plywood resting on the rafters. Otherwise, find a designated corner where it can be stored upright.
- Get holiday lights under control. If you use multiple strings of lights to decorate the exterior and/or interior of your home we have several recommendations for you. The first is cheap and easy – use a length of masking tape, folded back on itself to form a tag, and write down how long the string of lights is and where you use(d) it. That makes next year’s decorating that much easier. When it’s time to take them down, carefully wind the lights into a round and store string one in its own plastic bag, then lay those flat in a clear plastic storage bin (more on those next).
- Buy clear, plastic storage bins. When it comes to holiday decorations, it’s all about clear plastic bins so you can see what’s in there. In truth, we’re fans of clear storage bins for everything because we’re tired of scratching out and re-writing labels as our items come and go. Again, it’s worth it to invest in quality – and buy the type that snap-and-lock to keep your items pest- and debris-free for the other 46+ weeks they’re being stored each year. Plus, they make it easy to stack and stack without having to worry about collapsing cardboard.
- Divide decorations by location. Try organizing your decorations in a way that makes sense, like differentiating storage bins by indoor/outdoor, the floor of the home and/or specific rooms. This helps you with both set up and break down.
- Weatherproof your garage. Weatherproofing your garage, by upgrading insulation and ensure your garage is properly sealed, will protect the decorations from significant temperature fluctuations and/or direct weather and moisture contact that can destroy the contents.
When your holiday decorations are sorted, organized and safely stored, it makes decorating and de-decorating a breeze.