Cleaning & Organizing
8 Brilliant Halloween Decoration Storage Ideas You Never Thought Of
No tricks here—putting away your Halloween decorations can be a treat! Organizing expert Jamie Novak reveals her storage secrets and holiday hacks to make cauldron clean-up, October organization, and spine-tingling storage a breeze.
Clean up clutter and toss the trash
You use an old hairbrush to sweep stretchy spider web fibers out of the bushes. Try running a lint roller over the floor to collect stray glitter. Those adorable gel window clinging creatures won’t stick come next year—you’ll want to toss those. Find and toss any broken decorations you can’t fix and make sure you dispose of your Jack-O-Lantern before it gets gross. Make sure you’re aware of these 15 Halloween etiquette rules. For more organizing secrets, check out my book, 1000 Best Quick and Easy Organizing Secrets.
Simple storage shortcuts
Use clear kitchen wrap to protect decorations with moving parts—a skeleton, for example—that can get damaged in storage. Add cushioning by sliding a single sock over candles, which also keeps them dust-free. Contain potential leaks by slipping water-filled items—like a light-up globe filled with water and sparkles—into a zip-top bag. If you’re storing bulky, over-sized, plastic trick-or-treat pumpkins, use them as additional storage by nesting smaller things inside.
A tall plastic storage tub can house hanging decorations like flying bats and witch’s hats. You can add a spring-loaded curtain rod between the two inside walls of the tub for a bar from which you can hang these items. For life-size figures and blow-up lawn decorations, consider a large rolling garbage can. You can even slide in lawn stakes, witch’s feet, and tombstones. Next year, all you need to do is roll the can to the yard. Making cheap Halloween decorations with the family is one of our favorite ways to have some fall fun without breaking the bank.
Wrap-up garlands, and light strands
Tie a piece of ribbon to one end of the light strand before storing it away so you can easily find the end next year. Keep your light strands safe and garlands tangle-free by laying down an old bed sheet, putting the lights on top and then rolling the sheet with the lights inside. If you prefer, just wrap your strands around a sturdy piece of cardboard and tuck the plug into a slit so it stays in place.
Pack up the treats
Take the guesswork out of decorating next year; if you have items you use in specific spaces, like a ghost garland that fits around the front door, label it before you put it away. Group and store items by where you display them outdoors, living room, kitchen, bathroom and so on. Don’t overfill the storage container—you can crush items, plus there is a good chance you’ll get more stuff and it will need a place to go. As you are packing up make a note of anything you are missing or need to replace; hopefully you can pick it up on an after-Halloween clearance sale. Save yourself even more money with these 30 DIY Halloween decorations.
Label every side of each storage box—including the top—so you can read it from every direction. Count how many boxes you have and write “box one of x”; that way, you won’t skip a box by accident or waste time looking to see if there’s one you missed. If you don’t want to write directly on a plastic storage tub, add a length of clear packing tape or blue painter’s tape to write on—both should come off easily. Label all cords and cables so you know what goes with what. Use your phone to make finding things easy: Snap a photo of the contents then print out the photo and tape it to the side of the box.
Cull the costumes and collections
Not everything stores well for next Halloween—or you just might need to pare down because you are running out of storage space. Either way, there are some things you’re better off tossing or donating. Ask yourself, “Will this store well?” If your seasonal storage isn’t climate controlled you risk things being damaged due to excessive heat, cold, or humidity. Ask yourself, “Do I still like it?” Don’t take up valuable storage space for something you won’t use or display.
Another question to ask yourself: “Can this be replaced inexpensively?” Half used packs of faux spider webbing take up lots of space and are cheap; save the space for more valuable things. If your kids will outgrow that costume by next year, then it might make sense to share it with someone who can use it. You’ll never be without a Halloween costume with these last minute costume ideas!
Don’t bother with these things
Remove all batteries before storing the stuff; leaking or corroding batteries make a mess. Check inside things like candy dishes and plastic pumpkins for stray candy; you don’t want any sticky surprises next year. Real wax candles tend to melt in storage and the wax can damage other decorations. Special effects makeup should not be stored—it dries out and may not be safe to use a year from now. Glow sticks don’t last forever— and they can leak—use them up instead of storing them away. Do not keep any natural decor you scooped up from the lawn like fall foliage; unless you treat it, it will disintegrate in storage. Finally, use up the themed paper plates and cups—they crush in storage and you won’t remember you saved them anyway. Next year, give these 18 easy Halloween makeup ideas a try.
Search for strays
Just when you think you’ve collected all the decorations and put them away, you’ll find one or two things you forgot. Take a moment now to hunt down all those forgotten items like a goblin soap dispenser from the guest bath, a set of scary sheets, or a tablecloth in the linen closet. Check the kitchen for clown coffee mugs, pumpkin carving kits, cookie cutters, or a pumpkin-shaped serving platter. You might find a themed throw blanket in the living room or a “Boo!” welcome mat outside your front door. You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment when all your Halloween decorations are organized and safely stored away for another year. For next year, check out these vintage Halloween costumes we should bring back.