Whether your fragile Christmas ornaments are new or heirlooms, you'll want to make sure that they remain in good condition for many Christmases to come.
Here we provide some packaging and storage tips to help you keep your favourite decorations organised and intact.
Inspect and clean ornaments
It's a good idea to inspect your ornaments for damage before you pack them away. Toss any ornaments that can't be repaired, and fix those that can. Also, inspect strands of Christmas lights and replace any burned out or broken bulbs.
To clean ornaments that are dusty but fragile, simply wipe with a soft dry cloth or spray with compressed air.
Choose containers carefully
Many people recommend storing Christmas decorations in their original packaging.
However, it's best to avoid using cardboard for storing items for extended periods. That's because it deteriorates over time, absorbs moisture – which can encourage the growth of mould and mildew – and is an attractive nesting place for insects.
You may have items in your recycling bin right now that are ideal for storing fragile ornaments. Examples are:
- plastic takeaway containers
- ice-cream and yoghurt tubs
- polystyrene trays.
Alternatively, you can buy one or more suitable containers. Opt for sturdy containers with lids. Depending on your needs, it may also be worth investigating a container with lots of small slots and spaces for holding individual ornaments.
To store wreaths, garlands, and other items that can be deformed easily, aim to find containers that the items will fit exactly.
Generally group ornaments according to their packaging needs. For example, group them based on similarities in fragility and size, rather than colour or their original source.
Wrap ornaments individually
Before packing fragile ornaments, wrap each one individually in tissue paper. You can add a layer of bubble wrap around the tissue paper, or place bubble wrap between ornaments once they're in a container.
If you don't have bubble wrap, sheets of paper towel will do.
Keep bows intact and crease-free by placing pieces of cardboard tube inside of each loop. Then wrap the tube in paper towel or tissue paper until it fits snugly inside the loop.
Pack Christmas lights
When everyone's waiting to decorate, there's nothing more frustrating than having to untangle a chaotic, disorganised mess of Christmas lights.
So instead of hurling them into a box once they come down at the end of the festive season, invest just a little time in untangling each string and carefully winding it around a rectangle of cardboard. Then place each set of lights in a separate zip lock bag.
Add protective padding
If you’re putting numerous ornaments in the same container, put the heaviest items on the bottom and the most delicate ones on top so that your most fragile ornaments don’t get squashed.
Make sure there's enough room around each ornament for you to add some padding. This can take the form of packaging peanuts or shredded paper towel, for example.
It’s also a good idea to keep small boxes inside larger ones, placing crumpled tissue paper between the smaller boxes.
If ornament hooks are securely attached, leave them attached to the ornaments to avoid misplacing them (and to make life simpler next year).
Store ornaments safely
It’s important to store fragile, delicate ornaments somewhere safe, where they won't be knocked, accidentally kicked or exposed to sunlight, damp or temperature extremes.
At XtraSpace, our self-storage units are ideal for storing all types of Christmas ornaments, from artificial Christmas trees to tinsel, indoor and outdoor Christmas lights and fragile tree decorations. Contact us for more information or browse to find a branch near you.