When we're decking the halls, we can put a lot of strain on our homes. Thick garlands, weighty strands of lights, bright decorations, and massive Christmas trees can leave behind intractable messes and unsightly damage when the holidays are over.
Damaged floors, peeling wall paint, or damage caused by a fire or excess water are the last thing you want to deal with during this hectic season.
To preserve your home this holiday season, begin by hanging or displaying all of your decorations in a safe, damage-free manner. Work slowly and deliberately when it's time to take them down.
These holiday decoration ideas will teach you how to make your home look festive and bright without generating a massive mess or ruining your floors, walls, windows, furniture, and other surfaces permanently.
1. Don't let your Christmas tree end up on the floor.
If not properly cared for, your beautifully adorned Christmas tree might cause major harm to your floors. The harsh plastic or metal tree stands that support these large evergreens can leave permanent indentations in carpet and scratch hardwood and other types of flooring.
Place your tree in a wide, sturdy basket or use a sheet of plywood as a base under the tree stand to spread the weight and protect your floors and/or carpets to help prevent this. Cover the plywood with a tree skirt or wrap it like a present for a festive look. To avoid damage on other types of flooring, place a non-skid pad underneath the tree. If you have a real tree, use a waterproof material that will protect your flooring from water and sap.
2. Hanging decorations with nails is not a good idea.
When hanging decorations, avoid using nails or screws because they leave unsightly holes. Use self-adhesive, removable clips or hanging strips, such as those from 3M's Command brand, that securely adhere to the wall and can be easily removed.
To ensure good adherence, always use hangers that are rated for the weight of whatever you're displaying, and clean the wall or other surface thoroughly before applying your decorations.
Duct tape, double-sided tape, and other adhesive products that aren't meant for use on walls should never be used on them. These can be difficult to remove, leaving a sticky residue or peeling paint in their wake, and they rarely have the power to hold what they're supposed to in the first place.
3. Hang your garlands with care.
Garlands can be rather heavy, especially if they're decorated with pine cones, ribbon, and other accessories. To avoid the need for reinforcements when decorating your fireplace, try just draping the garland across the top of the mantel.
If you want the garland to be draped across the front of the mantel, get some transparent fishing line and enough self-adhesive hangers to support its weight. For added strength, attach the hangers to the top of the mantel's surface rather than across the front, and hang the garland by looping the fishing line through it. As a result, the hangers will be less stressed, and your garland will be less likely to topple over.
Planning to use garlands for a holiday staircase makeover? To secure the garland to the banisters without damaging the railing, use zip ties.
4. Avoid a glitter bomb after the holidays
Glitter adds a festive touch to ornaments and other holiday decorations, but months later, when you're still picking sparkles out of your carpet, the look is less appealing. To avoid splashing glitter all over your house, cover your glittering baubles with a clear sealant before hanging them on the tree. A spritz of hairspray will suffice in a pinch. Allow for complete drying before decorating.
5. When it comes to window decorations, be cautious.
When hanging wreaths or other decorations around windows, never use nails or screws directly around the frame, since this can enable damp or chilly air to pass through. Avoid using tape, stickers, or anything else that will leave a sticky residue.
For a simple, damage-free hanging solution, use hooks that adhere to the glass. Another option is to fasten your décor above the window frame using self-adhesive, removable hooks, then hang it with clear fishing line.
6. Minimize the risk of a holiday fire
The more holiday decorations you have, the better, yet all that greenery and splendor could cause a fire.
To lessen the risk of a house fire this season, make sure all electrical cables are in good working order before plugging in your lights, and don't overload circuits. Never leave an open flame unattended, and use flameless candles whenever practical. There are many beautiful flameless candle options available, and they are far safer to have around children, dogs, and clumsy adults.
Keep your tree and any other flammable decorations away from heat sources such as fireplaces and heaters. A dry tree is more likely to catch fire, so if you have a real tree, check the water level every day to make sure it has enough to drink. Remove your tree as soon as possible after the holidays are done.
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