|Photo: Dodgerton Skillhause via Morguefile|
As you take things out, take inventory of your containers. Can you lift them? Find what you need? Are like items stored together, or are the ornaments mixed in with the outside lights? As you take things out, think about how you'd prefer to take them out next year. Then, make a list of what you need to make it happen.
Plan by style. Using a system that sucks the joy out of decorating? Maybe it's backbreaking (like my crawl space), unwieldy (those big bins that looked so roomy in the store are just plain heavy when they're full of decorations) or confusing (endless stacks of identical brown boxes). Re-evaluate your system now and upgrade it with containers that work for your styles. If you can hold off revamping your system until after the holidays, you might even get what you need on sale.
One in, one out. If you, like me, enjoy hitting the after Christmas sales, make room for new things by weeding out any decorations you haven't used in the past two years. Then, when you buy something a new treasure, get rid of something old. Sometimes it's easy. When I got my new black boots, I had no trouble parting with the old ones (they hurt my feet), but when I get something new that's part of a collection (a new charm for my Pandora bracelet), I'm unwilling to make an even exchange. In that case, I'd choose to let go of something else, preferably something bigger so I get some extra space out of the deal. Fortunately, even exchanges are pretty easy to pull off with things like decorations, and even easier when we're replacing something that's stopped working with something style-specific.
|Photo: LadyHeart via Morguefile|
The goal here is to plan what comes next so that after the holidays, when the craziness subsides, you can put your plan into action. Then next year at this time, you can decorate with style.