Whether you're looking for a big light show or a modest display for the holidays, hanging Christmas decorations can be stressful. Lifehacker shared tips to help you simplify and speed up the decorating process so you have more time to enjoy the celebrations with family and friends.
Choosing a way to attach the decor without damaging the house, hanging the garlands according to your planned plan and being in time for the celebration is not easy if you want to put on a great show and not have an emotional breakdown.
Make a lifesaver
Instead of carrying a ladder or stool with you, you can use a so-called reaching stick. This is a special pole with an inverted hook attached to it for hanging lamps, garlands and decorative wreaths.
If you don't have one, you can use a hook from a wire hanger or similar shaped object. Having installed such a hook, you can use it to hang garlands and light bulbs in hard-to-reach places without having to climb a ladder. Save it until after the holiday season so you can take it all off the same way.
Pre-attach hooks for hanging
Pre-attach an S-hook for easy access. If you are hanging the garland on the edges of the gutter, you can use s-shaped hooks after taping them to the garland at a short distance. Using a stick, you can push the hook up and attach it to the edge of the gutter without having to climb a ladder or attach anything to the gutter. To avoid scratching the drain, wrap the wire hook with duct tape or replace it with one with a rubber coating.
Garlands are not in a spiral, but in a circle
When placing garlands on a tree or wreath that needs to be removed at the end of the season, the garlands should be placed on the surface of the branches rather than wrapped around them. Starting at the top of the tree, running one strand all the way to the top, and then working your way down, placing the garlands on the branches as you go, will distribute the garlands more evenly, make more of the garlands on the strand visible, and will also make them easier to remove later.
Label the garlands
Labeling the wires as they are added to the composition will help identify possible problems, count the number of wires in the circuit and organize the lamps before putting them away for next year. Using letters and then numbers when connecting multiple circuits at once will help keep everything sorted and keep the count accurate. Another benefit of wire labeling is that it helps troubleshoot problems during the process.
If you have a problem with one filament, say A-3, you can come back to it later, knowing exactly which lamp filament you need based on the markings, and solve the problem or remove the filament from service. If you don't want to number the wires, you can mark the problem wire with a different colored tape flag so it can be easily identified later.
Pre-light the decor
Light decorations before hanging them. Before you hang your lights, test them so you can troubleshoot them in a more comfortable location—at a table or on the floor. To securely secure the lights without damaging them, use Velcro strips, reusable zip ties, or electrical tape. Alternatively, attach garlands to the top of the tree before you install it.
Use smart timers and extension cords
Using a smart extension cord or timer to connect your lights will allow you to control how they turn on and off without having to access the outlet they are plugged into. This can be especially useful if you need to hide extension cords and cords behind furniture or in other hard-to-reach places. Using your phone or smart home hub to control your lights makes it much easier to turn them on and off.
Store your garland correctly
To store your garland, wrap its cords around a garden hose reel or the outside of the box it came in. Using a larger item to wrap around the lights will help prevent damage. In addition, this method will help to avoid tangling of light bulbs, which often leads to them breaking and burning out the entire garland.
Keep track of connections
To prevent the plugs from coming apart, cover the connections with electrical tape or use Velcro. This will not only ensure that the display glows brightly, but will also reduce the risk of fire due to incomplete cord connections. A tight connection of the plugs will allow you not to worry about a loose extension cord getting warm somewhere behind the sofa.
Use solar panels
For outdoor displays, you can use solar path lights with color-changing bulbs, solar fountain lights, and solar lanterns. Solar lights don't require batteries or cords, so they require little maintenance and add bright, colored light to your yard.
Hide mistakes with bows
Using ribbons and other decorations, you can hide large, conspicuous hooks, plugs, battery packs and other items that you don’t want to include in the display.
Make holiday bows to match your garlands or wreaths and attach them where hangings, Velcro, or cords are obvious. In order not to bother with garlands and other decor on the stairs, you can add a ribbon to them.