From home decor, to collectibles, Christmas stockings to Nativities, Christmas ornaments (GALORE!) to Christmas lights and artificial trees – our team has learned a few things over the years from working at the World’s Largest Christmas Store! And we’re happy to pass along our tricks to you in this compilation of 20 tips to help you through the holidays!
20 TIPS FOR THE CHRISTMAS SEASON
- When fluffing your artificial Christmas tree, branches should be shaped upward as if “growing into the sun.”
- When fluffing your artificial Christmas tree, don’t skip shaping the back fronds near the pole! Those inside fronds are perfect for filling out the tree.
- Charlie Brown may have been on to something!🤔 Ornaments are best displayed when they have room to hang on trees that appear a bit thin when not decorated.
- Never connect incandescent and LED light strands or mix incandescent and LED bulbs on the same cord.
**The electric current running through incandescent and LED bulbs and strands are different. If you plug incandescent and LED strands together or put both incandescent and LED bulbs into sockets on the same cord, you run a high risk that the current from the incandescent will surge, causing the LEDs to blow out. It can possibly kill the incandescent lights at the same time as well. Not to mention it is also a fire hazard.
- Because of voltage differences, not all pre-lit trees are designed for a tree topper to be plugged directly into the rest of the lights. It’s best to run a separate cord directly from the outlet up the trunk. Secure the cords with chenille stems (pipe cleaners), and use bows or ribbons to disguise the base of the tree topper and cords.)
- If your artificial tree (with hinged-branches) does not come pre-lit, you can wrap lights on the tree in sections. Just be sure that the strands of lights end and begin in one section of tree so you can easily separate the sections again when it’s time to store without having to remove lights completely. One and done!😊
- When lighting your tree, don’t play Ring Around the Rosie – instead follow each branch and weave the light cord in and out of the fronds. You can see our diagram on lighting the tree here or watch our quick video tutorial:
- It’s best to replace burnt-out bulbs as soon as possible to maximize strand life.
**A light strand uses the same amount of voltage whether all the bulbs are working or not; when bulbs burn out, this creates a surge of voltage to the working bulbs. The strain of additional voltage can cause the strand to burn out prematurely.
- Place sentimental or fragile ornaments near the top of your tree to keep them out of the reach of young children and pets.
- When hanging ornaments on your tree with wire ornament hooks, twist or wrap the wire hooks around the branch tips to attach the bulbs more securely. (This minimizes the chances of one falling and breaking if it is accidentally bumped.)
- To make a smaller tree appear larger, place it on a platform. This works great if your space changes or you’re looking to decorate for a party or gathering with big impact on a budget.
- If your artificial Christmas tree, wreath or garlands need a little cleaning, use a dash of Dawn® dish detergent or Murphy Oil Soap® and water. Wet the tree with a hose or power washer; spray the tree with the mixture; wipe branches with rubber-gloved hands to loosen dirt; rinse thoroughly with hose or power washer; and lastly, dry tree thoroughly before storing. Your tree will smell clean and shine. (Washing not recommended for pre-lit items due to electrical issues.)
- Disguise outdoor floodlights from the back side with pine boughs or rocks.
- If your Nativity scene (or any other collectible set) is wrapped in Styrofoam, mark the name of each item in it’s place so you aren’t solving a puzzle and trying to find which piece fits where when it’s time to store again!🤔
- Stuff wads of tissue paper in the loops of bows to keep their shape when storing.
- When storing Christmas lights, it’s best to fold them back and forth at each light and store them back in their box to minimize jiggling of the delicate wires which can cause them to weaken and become exposed over time.
- When storing your Christmas ornaments, it’s best to wrap them in tissue to minimize chances for breakage. (Our ornament storage boxes are an excellent solution to replacing boxes that have worn and weakened over the years.)
**It’s best to store your Christmas decorations in a dry cool place since moisture can cause ornament paint to peel, and extreme heat can cause cracking in an ornament’s finish.
- Tree skirts or stockings that have become wrinkled or misshapen in storage can be restored with a hit of steam.
- When fluffing wreaths, be sure to shape branches upwards and around, leaving the back flat so that it lies better on or against a surface.
- Store wreaths and branched garlands in a large box or bag to keep the needles from being crammed and crushed.
WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS?
What are some of your favorite tips and tricks that have you learned over the years? We’d love to know in the comments below! 👇