Struggling to get everything purchased and wrapped for your loved ones in time for the Holiday’s? A few years ago, our founder, Melissa Rogers, was too! So she created a simple, holiday-prep system that helps to keep everything in order. Now, she’s sharing her top tips for keeping track of gifts purchased and how to get those unruly gift wrapping supplies in order! After all, we can all use a little less stress during the holidays, right?
How did this Christmas system get started?
Purchasing Gifts Throughout the Year
Melissa and her husband spent four years living in Europe and move around the country, for his active duty military service. Every time they go somewhere new and exciting, she’s on the lookout for presents that family and friends will love. At first, she’d simply keep them all in a bag until Christmas and then send them off! Pretty simple, right? Not necessarily!
But sometimes, she would have gifts that were bought in February and had to be stored/kept organized until the coming December. Trying to keep track of that bag or box, remember who it was for, and where it was from got pretty confusing!
The first Christmas where she had purchased gifts throughout the year, she didn’t keep track of which present was for whom. Oops! After that she vowed to make things easier on herself! She put sticky notes on each item to say who it was for and kept all the items from one place in a bag/box together. That made the Christmas wrapping and shipping process MUCH smoother! Many Christmases later and she is still doing this but with a much quicker process and a more sophisticated tracker. If you’re the kind of person who does Christmas shopping through-out the year or has family spread out across the country, like Melissa, you might benefit from these tips! Here are four simple steps she takes to keep track of the presents purchased for family and friends.
Save good condition, empty Amazon and other boxes that can be used to store the gifts in until it’s time to wrap and send. This helps to keep purchases organized and also saves big time on packing boxes and supplies!
Group items for each person in their own bag or box and put a label with their name on it.
Keep all the gifts in one area (such as a spare bedroom or closet). This will help greatly to keep from confusing (or losing) them with everything else going on in your house.
Use a tracker sheet like this one Melissa found on Pinterest to keep track of what’s been purchased for each person. It’s much more efficient to create a list than to try to remember months later!
Wrapping the Gifts
Melissa says, “When it’s time to start wrapping and packing, it is easier to stay motivated when everything is organized and ready to go.” So she suggests keeping like supplies together for easier inventory checking, when making a run to the store. If you know there is only have one roll of wrapping paper left from last year, you’ll need to grab some more so you don’t run out mid wrapping session. This will also help keep you from buying things you don’t need when after-Christmas sales come up on supplies!
Melissa prefers mobility when she is choosing storage for supplies. That way if you need to move your “wrapping spot” you can easily move your supplies with you. Consider having separate containers for wrapping paper, bags/boxes, and ribbon.
- For wrapping paper- look for a standard gift wrap box that can hold up to 25 of the 30’’ rolls or even an under the bed container (just check the length).
- For ribbon- consider a multi-layered box that can hold up to different sizes and widths of ribbon. Melissa likes something with a handle, for easy transport.
- And for gift bag storage- consider a container that is taller than it is wider. Scrapbook storage bins for 12×12 paper work great too! You can use some old cardboard you around the house to make dividers between the types of bags (birthday, Christmas, etc.).
Hard containers/bins will help ensure your paper goods are kept in good condition throughout the year! No smashed wrapping paper rolls here!
We hope these gift and wrapping tips will help you to make a smooth transition into this holiday season! Here’s to spending your time with the ones you love instead of being tied up in Christmas prep!