The holidays are here! Around the world, spare rooms are being spruced up, bathrooms are getting a deep clean and porches are being prepared to welcome holiday guests.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the cleaning and organizing that has to happen in order to get your home holiday-ready. With a few storage and organization tips, you’ll be rocking around the Christmas tree in no time.
Get Guest Ready
If you usually use your guest bedroom as a storage place now’s the time to actually place those items into storage. Your guest room should make your visitors feel especially welcome and comfortable. Clear out the closet and drawers to allow space for your guest’s stuff to be hung or folded. Provide a place to set down a suitcase, either in the closet or on a luggage rack or small table.
Resist the temptation to use your guest room to display your collectibles, your kid’s art projects or fill the closet with out-of-season clothes. In a guest room, less is more — more space, more welcoming, more comfortable.
Stash Kids’ Toys
Whither you’re one of those who might be thinking of imposing the “one in, one out rule” or rotating toys to keep them fresh, stashing toys is one way to minimize clutter and stay organized this holiday season.
If it’s hard to know what’s really a favorite, include your kids in on the organizing project. Ask them how often they play with something; if they prefer thing one or thing two. Then label the box with the date, and place it into storage. If after six or so months they haven’t asked for any of the toys, let the box go and donate it.
Store Seasonal Decor
For those who are really festive, you know that holiday decor can take up tons of valuable room in your home. Instead, use a storage company to store your decor that’s only used for the holiday season each year and use your home to store items that you’re likely to use everyday (and especially during the holidays!).
By storing things like artificial trees, ornaments, Hanukkah candles, lights and garlands, you’re freeing up more room to stash items like paper towels, toilet paper, tissues and extra linen.
Declutter The Garage/Basement
For many people, the garage and basement are simply extra storage spaces. It’s also usually the place you hope guests never see. By decluttering this space, you’ll have one less thing to worry about this holiday season and you may even park your car in the garage this year!
Collect excess tools, sporting gear, out-of-season lawn equipment and seasonal outdoor furniture and place them into storage. For more everyday things use shelving and hooks to stay organized and clutter-free.
Simplify The Kitchen
Free up counter space and store large kitchen gadgets you won’t use this holiday season. The kitchen is where families spend most of their time, especially around the holidays. Having unnecessary items taking up counter space creates a less than ideal place to host guests.
Bring Order To The Living Room
Think multipurpose. A lot of your existing furniture or decor accents can serve two (or more!) purposes. This will be especially helpful if you’re hosting guests. An ottoman can double as seating and a chest can make a great coffee table and be used to store blankets and pillows. If you’re bringing in extra seating, rearrange the furniture to ensure your living room flows.
Decorative trays can be great for serving guests hors d’oeuvres and drinks and can also be used as a spot to corral stuff like remotes, magazines and candles. Baskets are a perfect storage solution because they’re also decorative. Use them to store firewood or to stash blankets and pillows.
Organize The Linen Closet
Now’s the time to sort through your towels and sheets to determine which are worth keeping and which should go to charity. Resist the temptation to hoard extra sets for emergencies. If you purchase a new set, retire an old one.
Use boxes, bins and baskets to store and separate your linens. Fold towels in thirds lengthwise, then into a rectangle. Place them at eye level or below so guests can find them easily. Sheets and pillow cases can be kept in baskets while dining and antique linens should be hung on a non-wire hanger.
Lastly, when it comes to toiletries, having a well-stocked linen closet is a tremendous timesaver.
Give the Gift of Experience
A good way to avoid clutter in the home is to give the gift of experiences this holiday season. There are so many ways to honor loved ones without giving gifts that end up as clutter. Encourage people to follow this concept when buying gifts for you and your family.
Some alternative gift ideas:
- Edible treats like a cookie basket or bottle of wine.
- Gift certificate to dine out or enjoy a spa day.
- A donation in the name of the gift recipient.
- Tickets to a show or concert.
Consider A Storage Place
If you’re still in need of more storage space to get your home holiday-ready, consider companies that offer pick-up and return storage services. This can be a great solution for someone who doesn’t have the time to lug stuff to a storage unit or simply prefers the ease and convenience of ordering their items to be picked up or delivered with the touch of a finger.
Stashable is a full service company that does just that while providing bins and wardrobe boxes free of charge. To learn more visit www.stashable.com.