Now that Christmas is over for some of us, it’s time to pack up our artificial Christmas trees and have space in our living rooms again. For many people their Christmas tree is sentimental and they hope to make more memories with it for years to come- so it’s important to pack and store it away properly.
Step 1: Cushion and Protect Ornaments
After years of collecting sentimental ornaments with your children, or after finally finding the PERFECT color scheme, you want to make sure your decorative investments will be usable again. There’s nothing sadder than being excited to decorate your tree and finding that the ballerina you got when you were 10 had her arm broken off when the box she and her friends were tossed into got jostled. For smaller circular bulbs empty egg cartons are a great way to make these both cushioned and stackable. For larger or non-circular ornaments Martha Stewart has a great DIY option– simply hot glue paper cups to cardboard cut to the size of your storage bin, place tissue paper-wrapped ornaments in the cups, and then stack the cardboard flats in your bin. In lieu of using up fresh tissue paper, you can also use your wrapping paper discarded from presents for a cheap and more eco-friendly option.
Step 2: Wrap Lights and Garland So They’re Tangle-Free
We all know how much of a hassle it is to sit down every year and spend an hour untangling the mess you made last year when you just bunched everything up in a hurry and tossed your lights in a box. This year take the extra 15 minutes to wind your stringed decorations up and the future you will thank you. One cheap way to keep your lights and tinsel orderly is to use a rectangle of cardboard (a good way to use up those gift boxes and toy packaging too) with a slit on each end to wind your lights and garland through.
Step 3: The Christmas Tree Itself- From Top to Bottom
When taking down your artificial tree always work from the top to the bottom. You may also want to get a helper for this part. To begin, take off the smallest top piece and place it on the ground. Then push the branches upward, being sure not to crush and bend the branch tips. To secure these you have a few options. You can wrap twine or string of another sort around the middle of the branches and tie it off. You can also use our personal favorite method- movers’ stretch plastic wrap, to wrap around all the branches and keep the secure and protected. Repeat with the rest of the tree sections. If your tree is made of individual locking branches instead of segments, stack like-size branches and bind them together so it will be easy to find all your pieces next year. When you finish with the branches, store them with the top layer in the bottom of the box, then the second layer on top of that, etc. so that they will be in the correct order for next year.