Christmas and everything that comes with it is my favourite time of year. I love gifting, I love making the world super magical for the kids and I love decorating the house for December, making it sparkly, warm and uber festive.
With all the charm of Christmas, house wise there's also the battle of feeling that you're lacking space, that rooms are feeling cluttered and the thought of yet more toys coming down the chimney gets close to sending you over the edge. I thought I'd share some tips on how best to 'make space for Christmas', meaning you can decorate, pop up that tree and focus on the big day without feeling like your house has been taken over by drunken messy elves.
Out with the old
As with any good house overhaul, starting with a house wide declutter is definitely the way to go here. With more gifts coming soon and possibly countless more toys and clothes for the kids if they're lucky, it's the perfect time to give the house a good sort out, one room at a time. Start with toys as this will be the most likely candidate for clutter when more arrive and it's amazing how many you can have squirrelled away that are outgrown or simply no longer played with. Donate your unwanted toys to charity shops, lightening your load and giving someone else the option of a cheaper Christmas gift whilst helping charities at the same time. If you have any baby or toddler toys your kids have outgrown, you may even be able to re-gift to children of friends and family if they're still in good condition as pre loved toys are still just as fun.
Clothes can be another huge factor in house clutter. If like me you're hopeless at keeping on top of the washing, you can often buy more and end up with countless clothes that are soon grown out of. Work your way through the kids clothes, coats and shoes as well as your own and get to donating those too. Usually after toys and clothes you will feel the load lightening, but there will plenty of things for us grown ups stashed in drawers such as cooking utensils we don't need, millions of wires we'll never use and books we wont read again. Get around as much as your home as possible and declutter that mutha like there's no tomorrow, you'll soon be feeling much more in the Christmas spirit and the thought of more things coming into the home will feel a lot less daunting.
Put your knick-knacks into storage
With extra items and decorations making their yearly appearance for the festivities, having all your usual ornaments and keepsakes around can add to the feeling of clutter even more. Why not wrap and box up your usual displays carefully and store away for the Christmas season. Packing these away will give your Christmas bits more room to shine, not over cluttering the room and ultimately feeling less stressful and more spacious for all those festive extras.
With the Christmas tree taking up a big space in at least one room, you could consider removing an arm chair or item of furniture to give the tree lots of space to shine. Although it's just for a few weeks, having too much in a room can feel a bit overwhelming and lets be honest, we'd all rather have room for more presents and people than squeeze in around squashed in Christmas trees and unused furniture.
Have a good pre-clean and tidy
After a good de-clutter, knowing that everything is then hoovered well, cleaned and dusted means you can relax and soak up all things Christmas, knowing that what you see is what you get and that the room beneath the sparkles is nice and clean, leaving less work the other end. Having a decent pre clean also means that you can spend a lot less of your time over Christmas cleaning and tidying when you should be all about the mince pies and family time. With a few weeks still to go, why not write yourself a list to battle through, so you know that you've covered every base and can fully enjoy your time over Christmas and take things easy.
Be selective with decorations
If like me, you love a good bauble shop each year, you can find that you soon build up a whopping stash that could probably clothe the trees of the entire neighbourhood. Although the whole 'less is more' thing goes well and truly out the window this time of year, it's still good to get rid of all those broken bits and things you'll never use again. Unwanted Christmas decorations could be a very welcome addition for someone struggling to decorate their home if they're lacking funds and still craving sparkle. Get sorting out your Christmas stash and pop on those free sites to give to others. If not, then your local charity shop will welcome them too, to sell on or decorate their own trees.
To make your home feel less cluttered, be a little more selective with your decorations if you know you're someone that stresses with extra clutter. Add your decorations up high, spread far and wide but don't put too much up that your walls start closing in.
Hopefully, if you're someone that doesn't cope well with clutter, these tips will help you make space for Christmas this year and feel a little more positive about the coming weeks. Until then, bin bags at the ready, lets go!