Often it is our Christmas, Hannukah and New Year's memorabilia that we hold dearest. Many family heirlooms are delicate ornaments that we hang on trees or other decorative items that we deem irreplaceable. What about the stockings that your great grandmother knit? There are proper methods to prevent all of these precious or fragile decorations from getting damaged so they can be passed down for generations.
Let's start big by safekeeping your artificial Christmas tree in your storage unit. The smartest way to protect your tree is in a tree storage bag, which you can buy at a home improvement store. This will cover your tree entirely, lights and all. And if you opt to remove the light strings from your tree, before you put them away, check to see that none are damaged. An economical way to prevent light strings from tangling is to wrap them around a used coffee can, paper towel tube or plastic plant hanger. When it's time to pull them out next year, it will be effortless.
Other large outdoor décor (reindeer, snowmen or creche) should be gently dusted before wrapping it in a tarp. Any blow-up items should be deflated and put in a separate box. Place wreaths in original packaging or a loose plastic bag.
Now to address the smaller, often more fragile items, like ornaments. If they are an unusual shape, put them back in their original boxes and group similar items together in a large plastic tub or box that is well labeled and color coded. Egg crates can gently hold individual glass ornaments before putting them in a larger box or tub. Mark any boxes with particularly delicate ornaments or decor as "FRAGILE."
Keep holiday candles in a dry, cool area. Wrap them in tissue to provide additional protection before putting them in a storage tub. Thoroughly wash holiday dishes and wrap them with newsprint, bubble wrap or linen before placing them in a box. Keep similar items, such as glasses, bowls or plates, together. Place the heavier items at the bottom of the box. Store any leftover gift wrapping paper in specially-made gift wrapping boxes or plastic bins.
If you take good care of your holiday décor and keep it in your storage unit, it will be a source of joy and serve you and your family well for future celebrations.