These are the 5 places to declutter before Christmas for a peaceful festive period

A clean and tidy home is the perfect place for hosting and relaxing over Christmas

Bed with scallop style headboard and yellow throw and pillowcases
(Image credit: Future)

Christmas is one of the happiest times of the year, but with all of the parties and presents also come many more belongings that you need to find somewhere to store. The amount of 'stuff' you acquire over the festive season, Christmas decor included, can be overwhelming, so decluttering your home before the big day will reduce the stress over the festive period and make receiving presents a true gift, rather than something to fret over.  

It's also the ultimate time to declutter your home ahead of the New Year. Let's face it, we want to spend the week between Christmas and New Year on the sofa eating lots of leftovers, not decluttering and organising. Instead, get ahead of the new year, new you, spirit and get rid of anything that isn't sparking joy, a la Marie Condo.  

Not only will decluttering things before Christmas give you more physical space to house your new buys (especially anything you pick up in the Boxing Day sales), it will also provide you with the mental clarity to enjoy everything that Christmas has to offer. 

5 places to declutter before Christmas

While many of us are making Christmas more sustainable, it can still generate a lot of 'stuff' in our homes, and alongside that, guests coming to and fro increase the levels of clutter.  

Christmas is a time to relax, switch off from work and spend quality time with family and friends, which is even more enjoyable in a clean and tidy home. So it's worth taking some time to declutter any spots that are making you feel overwhelmed. There are a variety of different methods, whether you want a slower sustainable approach or a speedy 10-minute tidy, it will result in a much more zen space. 

1. Spare room

Bed with scallop style headboard and yellow throw and pillowcases

(Image credit: Future PLC/James French)

If you have a guest bedroom or even a home office that doubles up as a spot to host, you'll want to ensure it's clutter-free before friends and family arrive. Now, this isn't to say that your home should look like a showroom to host people, but you want there to be space in the wardrobe and drawers for your guests to place their things. 

A spare room can become a dumping ground for miscellaneous pieces of furniture and old clothes, so having a good clear-out will make it feel like a hotel-esque guest suite that you'll be proud to host in.

'If family or friends are staying over, plan a deep clean, and a ruthless declutter. Clutter attracts clutter and it all attracts dust. Nobody expects luxury hotel standards but a clean, well-aired and tidy room is always conducive to a comfortable night's sleep,' says Mimi Bogelund, professional organiser and founder of The Organised Home & Life

'Start by opening the windows and stripping the beds and remove any big items so you have plenty of space to work in,' Mimi advises. 

'Sort anything that doesn’t belong in that room into groups: laundry, clean clothing, Christmas-related items etc., and move to their usual places. Then, put away everything that belongs in the room. If something hasn’t got a home, temporarily place it with something similar and tackle that area to declutter in the new year.'

2. Hallway

Christmas garland on white bannister in hallway.

(Image credit: Future)

A hallway is the first area that guests see when they enter your home over the holidays, and first impressions count! You'll want great hallway storage ideas in order to keep it tidy when greeting guests, and so that there's room for their shoes, coats and bags.  

'At Christmas time, we are much more likely to invite people to our home and to have impromptu visitors. Even if they don’t stay for long and you’re chatting in the doorway, a tidy hallway feels welcoming. And let’s face it, none of us enjoy revealing a chaotic pile of coats, shoes and bags,' says Mimi. 

'Discard or donate anything outgrown, anything superseded by a new version or rarely used, leaving you with the most used and essential items. Focus per person, involving everyone in your home. If you need to tackle this shared area when family isn’t around, don’t get rid of anything without their permission. Just use a bin bag and ask them to look through.'

'If you’ve got bags or boxes that are destined to be donated but are lingering in the spare room, the hallway or cupboards, either take action and deliver them to your charity shop,' Mimi adds. 

3. Wardrobes

Bedroom with rattan built in wardrobes next to bed.

(Image credit: Future)

Whether you have new clothes on your Christmas list or not, wardrobes are a good spot to declutter before the festive period commences. The bottom of a wardrobe can become a dumping ground for unused clothes, shoes and other random things that don't have a proper home. And although the doors can be closed on the mess, it still causes mental clutter. 

If you want to start the New Year with a clear mind (and home), focus on wardrobes and other cupboards that have become overridden with excess clutter. Learning how to organise a wardrobe will not only make it much more pleasant to open, but it will make getting dressed for Christmas day much more enjoyable.

4. Childrens rooms

Children's room with day bed with cushions and bookshelf on wall.

(Image credit: Future)

If you have children, you'll be well aware of the amount of toys that Father Christmas, and loved ones, will grace your home with. While this is overwhelmingly exciting for kids, it's less fun for grown-ups trying to tame the amount of plastic taking over playrooms, living rooms, or even kids' bedrooms.  

At a time when your children are being gifted with the latest toys that are more in line with their current age, it's the perfect chance to declutter and donate their less-loved games.  

'Out with anything broken, with missing parts or worn out,' Mimi instructs. 'Donate duplicates, those that have been outgrown or aren’t shown any love from the owners.'

5. Kitchen

Green shaker kitchen open plan with table set up for Christmas.

(Image credit: Future)

The kitchen is the heart of the home, and where the magic happens over Christmas, with decadent meals cooking and simmering pots of mulled wine ready for sipping. There will be a lot going on in a kitchen over Christmas, so ensuring your kitchen cupboards are organised and easy to navigate will make life a lot easier. 

You'll want to make sure that you know where your biggest pots, pans and serving dishes are so that they're easy to grab - especially as these are pieces of cookware you aren't likely to use often. But if you're hosting, you're also likely to have an abundance of roast ingredients, chocolate and alcohol to make room for in your fridge and cupboards.

'Christmas is all about the food. Well-loved dishes and special treats we don’t eat the rest of the year have to be accommodated alongside everything else. If kitchen space is overloaded, things get forgotten or lost. I’ve found mince pies in February and extra special chocolates well past their best date,' says Mimi. 

'A kitchen declutter needs an hour or two of your time and pays off mega quickly. So, get everything out in categories and check best-before dates. If it’s soon, leave those bits to one side to use up in the next few weeks. Otherwise if out of date, recycle or throw away. Group and store like with like so you don’t shop duplicates and can easily find everything,'

'If possible clear a whole shelf for Christmas-specific foods,' ends Mimi. 

Dedicating half a weekend to decluttering before Christmas might not be the most exciting festive plan, but it's one that you'll thank yourself for when your home feels relaxed and organised over the holidays. 

Holly Cockburn
Content Editor

After starting out her journey at Future as a Features Editor on Top Ten Reviews, Holly is now a Content Editor at Ideal Home, writing about the best interior ideas and news. At Top Ten Reviews, she focussed on TikTok viral cleaning hacks as well as how to take care of investment purchases such as lawn mowers, washing machines and vacuum cleaners. Prior to this, Holly was apart of the editorial team at Howdens which sparked her interest in interior design, and more specifically, kitchens (Shaker is her favourite!).