Decluttering After the Christmas Chaos

10th January 2022

Well, wasn’t it nice to actually see some friends and family this Christmas? After such a long time without welcoming visitors, many of us really ‘pushed the boat out’ this year. By now, however, you may be wondering what to do with all that extra ‘stuff’ that the Christmas Season produces… namely extra furniture and bedding to make life comfortable for everyone, new clothes and kitchenware… not to mention all those gifts that need housing.

If, like many, you’re now reviewing your hosting successes and failures over the past few days you may also be casting an astonished eye over the chaos that has erupted in your home and wondering how to deal with all the holiday excess. No worries, the Peter Green Team have come up with some top tips as to how to deal with the holiday clutter and execute a much needed whole-house tidy-up!  

First, let’s focus on decorations… do you keep putting that broken or unloved bauble back in the box each year? Then stop! Now is the time to dispose of any broken, duplicated or unwanted decorations. Gift, donate, recycle or sell them… but do not put them into storage for next year.  You can recycle any broken light strings or lights that have been replaced with more energy efficient LEDs at household waste recycling centres. Natural wreaths made of holly, ivy or fir tree clippings, can be composted or put it in your garden waste bin. Baubles and tinsel cannot be recycled but when they break replace them with eco-alternatives such as dried orange pomanders, bundles of cinnamon sticks tied with a ribbon, silver and gold painted chestnuts, walnuts and pinecones. Garlands of holly, ivy and acorns look pretty as do stems of Gypsophilia placed between the branches of the Christmas tree. All of the above look very festive and have the added bonus that they can be composted after the Christmas season is over… if not completely covered in glitter and glue. Tissue paper, paper chains, party hats, crepe paper and streamers can be composted at home only. 

When you repack your decorations label all the boxes ready for next year, you will happy that you did as they will be much easier to find!

Dedicate a spare wardrobe, chest of drawers or underbed space to store these delicate ornaments, this will keep them out of harms way and might also reduce the seasonal gymnastics involved in getting in and out of the loft space!

Now to tackle your family’s gifts, some of which may be still strewn around the living room? Try to give each gift a permanent place to live… books on a bookshelf, clothes in a chest of drawers or wardrobe; comforters, throws and pillows in a blanket box or ottoman bed-base, scarves and hats in an entrance way storage bench and trinkets or ornaments proudly on display in a cabinet. Consider whether any of this year’s gifts should replace older things in your home? Be decisive…swap them out and pass-on the outgoing item. Make sure you use you new gifts and enjoy them… don’t store them for a later date! And don’t forget to recycle the cardboard and packaging they came in!

Now for the big stuff…was it really worth lugging that single bed round from Uncle Tom’s house so Nanny had somewhere to sleep? Did the valve give up again on that airbed so guests woke up effectively sleeping on the floor? Is there still space in the garage for those extra dining chairs you only wheel-out at this time of year? If the furniture you had to use out of necessity didn’t really cut the mustard this year, then now is a great time to change it. Remember the Winter Sales are kicking in across the nation and it is an excellent time to swap them out with something more suitable. It’s not too early to start thinking about the next time you will have a houseful of guests! In fact, it’s the best time to plan next year’s hosting, while this year is still on your mind. Would stacking dining chairs be easier next time? What about an extending dining table which saves space when it is closed? Or maybe a neat ‘twin guest bed’ where a second bed is hidden beneath a normal looking divan set? Find your nearest independent reputable retailer and have a chat with them. They will have knowledge of what solutions exist and might even be able to demonstrate pieces to you, which you didn’t know existed!

At Peter Green Furnishers, we have dozens of ranges of furniture with discreet or even hidden storage, from lifting ottoman bed-bases you could lose a basketball team in… right through to more overt ‘look at me’ talking-point pieces, including display cabinets lit with tasteful LEDs and sideboards, which open automatically with a mechanical flourish, to show off your tableware. Plus with many ranges of bookshelves, TV and media units, free-standing cupboards and even kitchen islands, we are sure that whatever you storage and tidying needs are, Peter Green can help you find the right solution!

10th January 2022

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