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Chez Larsson

Packing Away the Holidays

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I'm going for the minimalist look as you can see.

Just kidding. I've been waiting for this moment since Christmas Day. After the gifts have been opened I'm always eager to take the decorations down but Martin and Wille want to keep them up until the new year and today being January 2nd finally got rid of most.  I do keep some paper stars and fairy lights a little longer but that's about it.

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Here in Sweden the tradition is to take everything down on Tjugondag Knut which is 20 days after Christmas Eve and its Knut's name day (Knut is a male name). That would mean I keep everything up until January 13th. Forget it. Here is part of the dismantled tree waiting to be boxed.

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Fragile pieces go into shoe boxes with tissue between the layers.

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Other decorations go into Ziploc bags. I love Zip locs!

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String lights bunched up and are ready to be stored in Ziplocs. 

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This is where it all goes. Two boxes for the tree decorations and one for the Advent decorations which go up first. The advent box also houses part of a rarely used Santa costume and a mini tree stand for a tree Wille used to have in his room when he was younger. This is the first layer…

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… and here's the second layer. The advent box is still quite empty because this is where the paper stars and fairy lights go after I take them down.

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The boxes have seen better days, need to get  new ones, but the labels are great. They are adhesive little sleeves where you just insert a printed piece of paper. They were being thrown away at the office years ago and I ofcourse saved them and they are just perfect. The boxes are stored here until next Christmas.

Besides from being able to take the decorations down I was also able to reclaim the laundry room today  (Yay!) as I could finally put some things back into the boatroom. More on that later.

25 Comments

  • Shelley says:

    I’m exactly the same about getting the decorations put away as soon as christmas day is over. I managed to wait until the 1st of January this year 🙂 My house is so small the that it starts to feel untidy after a few weeks of decorations!
    You’re very organised, much better than me.

  • Kristin says:

    Gott Nytt År!
    Mitt nyårslöfte är att bli lika organisatorisk som du. Ha ha. Hoppas det håller 😉

  • Åh vilken fantastisk ordning du har!! Nu blev jag inspirerad (pushad) att sticka iväg och handla lite lådor imorgon. Mina måste vara plast så att de inte står och möglar nere i källaren bara. 🙂
    Tack för sparken i baken 😉
    Kram Jenny

  • jadekitty says:

    Thanks for the detailed instructions on how to store decorations!
    I didn’t have much this year, but I’ve always wondered how other people stored everything year round.
    I can’t wait to see what this year brings for your blog!

  • Even your packing is pretty Benita! 🙂 You’ve inspired me to take a much more organized approach to my Christmas storage this year. Happy New Year!

  • Jean says:

    Looking forward to finding out what you decide to put into the box frames!

  • Franziska says:

    I enjoyed seeing these photos and reading your words. After my cold is getting smaller I tried to rush around the house and catch everything up to bring it to the attic. Unfortunately the cold had a debilitating effect on me so I always have to take a rest after a short period of time. But tomorrow it will be done.
    Unfortunately I don’t have only 3 comparatively small boxes like you. I have about 4 or 5 huge boxes. So I can’t bring them down to put everything into it but have to bring all the stuff to the attic and then into the boxes. Your way is pretty much easier… 😉
    Hälsningar!

  • Petra from the Netherlands says:

    I just love that storage room!
    How do you decide which items go into a cardboard box, and which are kept in those plastic boxes?

  • Martine says:

    Hi Benita,
    Happy Newyear!
    I also got rid of most of the decorations yesterday 🙂 I work in a furniture store, so I’m surrounded by christmas decorations all day long and this is the busiest time of year for us. So when I get home I want it to be clean, tidy and relaxing. Now everything is back in the boxes and following your example I decided to go with whites everywhere! It’s a bit like a blank canvas, what better way to start the new year, hey?

  • Sandra Yeong says:

    Benita,
    how I wish you celebrate Chinese New Year too, then you will show a sample how to keep all the decoration. But this already inspired me not only keep all the decoration in plastic bag and reuse it every year. he he

  • kellyt says:

    Doh! Wish I’d seen this before I put my decorations away. I always wish I had my ornaments and decorations more organized.

  • Love the way you tied up your christmas lights. I shall be stealing that idea from you!
    I LOVE your home and your style. Happy new year!

  • corinne says:

    Wouah ! You are just the way I’d like to be… despite beeing Swiss 😉 I’m not as well organised as you ! OK I’ll try this year to improve….
    A big thank you for all you nice idea/pictures you are offering us every day !
    Merci !!

  • Barb F (Australia) says:

    OK, this post gave me heart palpitations. Benita, if only I could bundle YOU up in a box (white of course, and clearly labelled) and put you in my cupboard. I want to be this organised!

  • Petra, no special thought went into that. I had loads of the white boxes but because they are cardboard they keep breaking after so many years. IKEA disontinued them and only have brown or patterned ones which I don’t like. Next best thing is clear so that’s what I get nowadays. I do prefer the white because some things are better left unseen. Also the clear are tapered and not so great for packing square things.

  • Maggie says:

    Hello Benita!
    Congrats on packing it all up. I finally put it all away yesterday too — mixed emotions of sadness and excitement for the new year!
    I’m now working on an inspiration board for ’09. Do you do inspiration boards or something similar? What do you put on them?
    Happy new year!
    Maggie
    EatBoutique.com

  • Maggie, I haven’t done any at home lately. I do them all the time at work to pitch the coming marketing campaign themes to my collgues and I guess I get enough of it there 🙂

  • Greetings Benita,
    I’m new to your blog and reading past entries to catch up has been like a Christmas present from you to me. Thanks for the inspiration! BTW – I found you via Apartment Therapy.
    Happy New Year!
    Mary (Maximum’s Mom)

  • mireille says:

    yeah, we took ours down last night – it is great to that part of the room back again! I got lucky a few years back when I was at a retail shop (Macy’s I think) and they were unpacking the ornaments for sale – all were packed into these great cardboard boxes with tissue and individual cells. They were all ending up in the trash and let me take a dozen or so. I am still growing into them.
    I wish I could figure out how to wind up lights like you. After years of being so frustrated with untangling them I figured out that taking a small length of wood (Or cardboard would work) and winding them around it, closing the string by plugging it into itself worked great for me and no more untangling.
    Everything goes into a massive Rubbermaid storage bin and straight into the basement – they are not white, but purple and the sides are fairly straight so it works great for us.
    But you are right on about being super tidy and organzied with this stuff. You use it once a year so take the time to make it super easy to deal with. Plus I am an avid after holiday bargain hunter – that is when I always buy my paper and any new decorations I want – for the next year.
    While I am not the most organized person on the planet by fr I really shold take more inspiration from you and how OCD I am about the holiday stuff for the balance of the year!
    Happy 2009! Thanks for such great advice and inspiration in ’08!!

  • Petra from the Netherlands says:

    Hi Benita,
    I looked at some other pictures on your flickr-page. I noticed you have some great “under the stairs” storage as well. Could you do a tutorial on those fabric covers for all that stuff on hangers?
    Thanx!

  • Petra, I’ll make a note of that!

  • Renate says:

    We have that same tradition here in Norway for when to pack away the Christmas decorations – the saying we use here is “Tjuende dag Knut kaster jula ut”. 🙂
    I tend to do it a bit earlier though – for me, Christmas is over when I get back from my parents’ after New Year’s.

  • Fiona says:

    Thank you for showing us how you stoe your decorations. Is an inspiration for me when I’m organizing my home 🙂