How to store Christmas decorations to keep them in perfect condition

Avoid shoving yours into a cupboard this year and put a proper storage system in place…

Pile of Christmas decorations and baubles on Santa sack
(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Christmas may be the most wonderful time of the year, but there’s no doubt that it’s also one of the most chaotic. That’s why knowing how to store Christmas decorations can help you keep on top of things.  

Whether you want to be one step ahead of the game and plan how to store Christmas decorations before the big day arrives or whether your New Year’s resolution has been to organise your home, these storage ideas are foolproof. They’ll prevent smashed baubles, squashed wreaths, missing tree lights, and broken Christmas trees.  

These Christmas decoration storage options are perfect for those who want to decorate for Christmas on a budget. By keeping them safe year after year, you can reuse them and save your hard-earned money for presents - or an extra Christmas pudding! 

How to properly store Christmas decorations

Before you can get started working out how to store Christmas decorations, make sure you remove them with care.

'My hack when it comes to removing your decorations from the tree is to place towels or throw blankets around the base of the tree in order to catch any fragile pieces that may fall as you remove them,' advises Mac Harman, CEO, Balsam Hill. 'It's a good idea to work from the bottom of the tree up as working from the top down may mean you knock lower-hanging decorations.'

'Whatever your system - be it ordering by size, shape, colour, texture - you should sort your decorations as you put them away. This will make decorating the following year even easier, as you can create your specific look without having to unpack everything.'

1. Wrap lights around cardboard containers

Flat lay of multi-coloured Christmas decorations

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Trying to unwrap and detangle outdoor Christmas decor such as Christmas lights is one of the biggest pains when it comes to decorating – so save yourself the trouble in 2023 and take five minutes to wrap them around a cardboard container (it’s likely you’ll have plenty to spare after Christmas present buying). 

Cut the side off of one of your cardboard boxes, and simply loop your lights around it for easy, neat storage; or, you could try wrapping them around an old kitchen roll holder.

Alternatively, you can buy specific products designed to keep your lights safe throughout the year. 

2. Buy ornament storage boxes

Metallic Christmas decorations and baubles in box

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Knowing how to store delicate ornaments without smashing them can be tricky. But an easy alternative is to get yourself an ornament storage box. You can pick one up from pretty much anywhere, with these storage boxes go from £7.99 on Amazon.

They are essentially boxes divided up into square storage holes; the perfect size for an ornament. By storing your ornaments individually in this way, you’re pretty much guaranteeing they won’t get damaged between now and next December.

3. Store smaller ornaments in egg boxes

Red and white Christmas baubles in egg box

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Alternatively, to store Christmas decorations on the smaller, more delicate side, then look to leftover egg boxes (from all those festive brunches). An egg box makes for a great home for smaller decorations – though you may want to wrap them up in kitchen roll to ensure extra protection. Begin collecting up egg boxes in mid December, and you should have plenty to hand for all of your precious pieces.

4. Get a tree storage bag

Christmas decorations make from sheet music hanging from tree

(Image credit: Future PLC/Symons Hatton)

Short of stuffing it back in the box it came in, there aren’t many options for storing your Christmas tree – unless you’ve discovered the magic of the best tree storage bag. Pick up a  Christmas tree bag, from £6.99, Amazon, that matches the height of your tree so that when you break it down, it fits perfectly and can be safely stowed away. Of course, this only applies to artificial Christmas trees – you’ll have to see our guide for how to dispose of a real tree.

'A storage bag will protect your tree while it’s stored,' explains Mac from Balsam Hill. 'Your bag needs to be large enough to comfortably hold your tree and made from durable material so that it can’t be torn by protruding branches - rip-stop nylon is a great option for this. For trees of more than one section, top to tail your sections so that thinner tops cover the fuller bottoms.'

'As a precautionary measure, you can even try storing the tree with a container of baking soda or unused coffee grounds to prevent it from acquiring a musty odour while in storage.'

5. Place soft decorations in a hamper

Christmas decorations and baubles

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

There are usually hampers aplenty over the Christmas period, whether you’ve had one as a gift or you’ve used it to transport your presents in. This year, try using it to store decorations such as tinsel, tabletop ornaments, Christmas wreaths or garlands. 

Hampers are a good option, as they tend to be much sturdier than plastic bags for example, so should keep your decorations in good condition throughout the year.

6. Make sure to label everything

Pile of Christmas decorations and baubles on Santa sack

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

It’s not a storage tip as such, but an essential step in how to store Christmas decorations (so you don’t dread next December), is to label every box, bag (or egg carton) you have. 

Once it’s labelled, you’ll know exactly what to unpack for each room, and you won’t waste time peering inside every box to find out. A no-brainer!

7. Invest in a wreath bag

Wreath in a wreath bag on the floor

(Image credit: Asda)

There are so many amazing Christmas wreath trends around the festive period, which is why we wouldn’t blame you if you wanted to re-use your artificial wreath year after year. However, it’s important to protect the branches and the decorations of your wreath to ensure it looks perfect next Christmas. 

One of the best ways to ensure your wreath looks as good as it did last year is to invest in a wreath bag. These circular bags are specifically designed to keep your wreath safe - especially if you keep your Christmas decorations in the loft. After all, they should protect your wreath from dust and condensation. 


How do you keep Christmas decorations fresh in storage?

There are so many ways to keep decorations fresh in storage, but this all depends on what kind of decorations you’re looking to store. To avoid impossible tangles and loose bulbs, you should always wrap your Christmas lights around something - whether that’s a piece of cardboard or a product specifically designed for Christmas lights. 

In terms of Christmas trees, wreaths, and baubles, it’s always a good idea to pop them back in their original packaging for storage. But if you accidentally throw out the packaging or just want to keep everything together, you can buy tree storage bags, decoration storage boxes, and even wreath bags to keep these decorations safe. 

How do you store Xmas baubles?

If you’re short on cash, the cheapest way to store baubles is in egg cartons. You can place each bauble into each hole and then shut the lid and protect them wherever you store them. However, you’ll need a lot of egg cartons to do this. 

So, we’d suggest investing in a storage box designed specifically for baubles. These normally come with trays and dividers to keep all of your baubles safe, and this means that you can store them all in the same box and in the same place. 

If you store your Christmas decorations correctly, you’ll be able to enjoy them year after year. 

Deputy Editor

Jennifer is the Deputy Editor (Digital) for Homes & Gardens online. Prior to her current position, she completed various short courses a KLC Design School, and wrote across sister brands Ideal Home, LivingEtc, 25 Beautiful Homes, Country Homes & Interiors, and Style at Home. 

With contributions from