Overcoming Holiday Overwhelm: Editing the Holiday Decorations

Welcome back for day two of Editing Your Holidays. Today we’ll discuss editing the decorations.

When I was first married I loved decorating for the holidays, probably because I didn’t have that many decorations. As timed marched on though and our family and house grew, the number of decorations grew too. This has resulted in my getting much more selective about what I want to put out for the holidays, as I don’t want to spend more than a day decorating the house, or more than a day packing things up in January.

I think I’ve been able to keep the number of decorations edited over the years for two reasons. One, I keep in mind what designer William Morris said , “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.” Two, I work hard to set limits on how many holiday decorations I keep around by limiting the number of plastic bins in which to store those decorations. I only keep what fits in the bins I have, therefore I follow a fairly strict one new thing in, one old thing out rule.

Another technique that makes editing the decorations easier is parking them for a year before purging them. When decorating this year place the items that didn’t make the cut and you are not decorating with in a box labeled “did not use in 2012.” Pack this box away as soon as the decorating is complete. When decorating the following year, reassess the items in this box that were not used in the prior year. If they still don’t make the cut, donate them to the local thrift store immediately.

This system has worked particularly well for me over the years because sometimes I do end up giving decorations a “second chance,'” especially a few years back, when we moved and certain decorations that hadn’t worked at our old house the prior year looked great in the new one.

This system also works well for the thrift store because I am donating holiday items at their most marketable time of the year, as opposed to right after the holidays when the holiday items are no longer in demand.

What decorations can you edit this year? What will make it easier for you to edit them?


2 Responses to “Overcoming Holiday Overwhelm: Editing the Holiday Decorations”

  1. Ellen Delap December 11, 2013 8:15 am #

    Love the concept! Parking them for a year helps you evaluate. It gives you time to process and then you are ready to part with your décor. Thanks for sharing!

    • Andrea Sharb December 11, 2013 9:06 am #

      Thanks Ellen, I’m a big fan of parking decisions for a set period of time, if there is no immediate need for the space.

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