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How To Declutter Gift Bags

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Today's mission is to declutter gift bags, including those for holidays such as Christmas, as well as seasonal and celebration themed bags, like those for birthdays and anniversaries.


Christmas Decoration Storage & Organization Challenge
This mission is designed to be done while we work on the Holiday & Christmas Decoration Storage & Organization Challenge here on the site, which is one of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenges.

However, it can be done at any time when you really feel you need to.

The reason I chose this time of year to suggest the mission is because close to the Christmas holiday many of us are preparing to give quite a few gifts, which is a great time to use up some of the excess gift bags we may be accumulating.

I completely understand why many of us have some excess gift bags laying around our homes. They're so easy to use for giving gifts, and they're VERY expensive, so when we get one it's admirable to want to save it for re-use in the future.

However, there can be too many gift bags, and when your accumulated pile becomes too much the bags become clutter instead of a useful small stash.

How to #declutter gift bags from your home, including those for holidays, seasonal, and those use for celebrations such as birthdays and anniversaries {part of the #Declutter365 missions on Home Storage Solutions 101} #declutteringuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest
Get rid of excess gift bags today, so that all the ones you have left fit into a smaller designated storage area of your choice.

(To get ideas for how much space you may need to designate for this purpose check out the tips for how to organize gift bags here!)

Ideally you'd trash or recycle any bags that are ripped or torn, and therefore not really ideal for re-gifting.

Then, you'd keep for yourself a smaller number of bags that spanned a range of sizes, from small to large, as well as were appropriate for a variety of seasons, holidays, or special occasions.

Finally, any excess that were still looking good could be donated for use somewhere else.

Some people even like to hold some of their light items that they've decided to get rid of in gift bags, and then donate the items inside as well as the gift bag to a second hand shop or charity! (You can see a picture of this in action, below, as shared by a Declutter 365 participant.)

I would suggest only keeping enough gift bags that you believe you'd use within the next year or so.

Remember, you'll restock your own collection each time you receive a gift bag from someone else, so there's no need to keep too many.

I've got some photos below from other readers who've already done this Declutter 365 mission so you can get yourself ready to tackle this task yourself!

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Use Excess Gift Bags To Hold Items You're Decluttering From Your Home

One idea I mentioned above, for getting rid of excess gift bags, was to fill them with items you've decided to declutter and then donate the stuff inside the bags, and the bags themselves, to a charity shop.

This kills, metaphorically of course, two birds with one stone, because it's an easy way of getting rid of both gift bag clutter as well as additional clutter in your house.

It can also help you solve the problem of finding containers to hold your clutter to carry to the donation center.

Here's a photo from a reader, Marcy, who used this exact strategy when decluttering, to get rid of both some excess bags and the clutter she put inside of them.

Get rid of excess gift bag clutter, and other clutter at the same time, by using old gift bags to hold all the stuff you're decluttering, and donate it, bag and all, to the charity shop! {featured on Home Storage Solutions 101} #DeclutterGiftBags #Declutter365 #DeclutteringTipsuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

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Photos From Reader Who Has Already Done This Mission

How to #declutter gift bags from your home for Christmas, other holidays, and parties and celebrations {one of the #Declutter365 missions on Home Storage Solutions 101} #Declutteringuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Seeing the results when others do this mission can help you get inspired to do it yourself, and I find these photos sent in by a reader, Jena, inspiring.

She sent in a series of photos above, which I've made into a collage, showing her results from the beginning to end of the decluttering process.

Jena said, "I totally needed to do this! Little bit of a hoarder about gift bags. Here are my before and after pictures. Embarrassed to say I started out with 125 gift bags and ended with about 40. All organized and then I hung the bags off the ground, hanging on 2 hangers."

Great job Jena! You really condensed the total number of bags you had, and got them a lot more organized at the same time!

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Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to holiday clutter.

Are You Ready To Get Rid Of Gift Bag Clutter?

Decluttered gift bags, including ones to trash, donate and keep, from a reader Jana, who did the #Declutter365 mission {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #Declutter #Declutteringuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Here's another photo, sent in by a reader, Jana, who said, "I was inspired to start on Christmas/gift bags. I had no idea we had so many! We cut them down by half. Now I have room in my hallway closet again."

Good job Jana!

Once you've done this mission yourself, don't forget to check out the corresponding article with ideas for how to organize gift bags to properly store the fewer number of bags you've decided to keep for yourself.

How to organize gift bags


Want To Do More Decluttering Missions? Get Started With Declutter 365 Today!

Declutter 365 missions: 15 minute missions for your entire home

Once you declutter one type of item in your home I bet you'll want to declutter some more. After all, decluttering gives you a great reward for even a small investment of time and energy.

The Declutter 365 system is designed to help you declutter, over the course of a year, your entire house, with just 15 minutes of decluttering each day!

Hundreds of thousands of people use this proven system to get rid of their clutter, and bring peace and calm back to their homes.

Declutter 365 works to guide you to clear the clutter without overwhelm, focusing on just one small area at a time, and without making a huge mess in the process, so you see consistent forward progress without all that "messy middle" that makes it even harder to function in your home than before you started.

In addition to building a daily decluttering habit, the Declutter 365 program, along with the accompanying 52 Week Organized Home Challenge, teaches you the skills, habits, routines, and mindsets necessary to maintain the clutter free and organized state of your home from now on, so it'll never be as messy and cluttered as it is right now, ever again.

If you haven't already, make sure to get your copy of this year's Declutter 365 annual calendar here (it's FREE!), find today's date, and do 15 minutes of decluttering on the day's mission. Then, repeat again tomorrow, and again and again. Over the course of the next year, if you do this 15 minutes per day, you'll declutter your whole house!


Click here to take me to this year's Declutter 365 calendar



Related Pages You May Enjoy

Getting Clutter Free 15 Minutes At A Time Hall Of Fame

Getting Rid Of Holiday Clutter Hall Of Fame

Go From How To Declutter Gift Bags To Home Page

Comments for Are You Ready To Get Rid Of Gift Bag Clutter?

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I do this once a year
by: Lorie

I actually do this task every year after Christmas when I'm putting all the wrap back up. Makes it so much easier since I use the majority of the wrap products at that time of year.

dollar store bags make it less expensive
by: Cheryl

Buying these at outlet and dollar stores makes it less expensive so I don't save near as many as I used to. I have one bag that I store the other folded bags in and one also for paper wrap. Store it on top shelf of hall closet.

donate the bag and its contents
by: Jennifer

Items I wish to donate go into my extra gift bags. Then I just drop off the whole bag at the donation center.

how we get rid of extra bags
by: Becky

We used gift bags to hand out Girl Scout cookies.

donate them
by: Paula

I have friends that donate these to thrift stores that are non profit that help. Salvation Army sells a lot of these.

two bags of bags
by: Jennifer

I have two large gift bags full of bags. One for Christmas and one Birthdays. Whenever one of us gets a gift bag we put it into one of these 2 bags. I haven't had to buy a gift bag in 3 years.

declutter when my storage drawer gets too full
by: Connie

I keep gift bags folded and in a dresser drawer along with tissue wrap, ribbon, tape, scissors, a pen, gift tags, and greeting cards. The drawer holds quite a few flattened. When the drawer is too full I declutter. The bags get recycled through the family. I rarely need to buy one.

give some gifts to help get rid of bags
by: Mary

This one is sort of obvious, but if you have too many gift bags, you could consider giving some gifts. Just some good old, for no specific reason other than I care about you gifts. They don't have to be expensive gifts, but they sure can make someone else's day a lot brighter! Generally the recipient won't care about the design on the bag too much, and if you just drop it off at their house they can't offer to give the bag back!

use for old beat up bags
by: Rebecca

I stash old beat up ones by my recycle bin. If the bin gets full before trash day, I open a bag and fill it with the overflow. The handles make it easy to carry and keeps things tidy until tended to.

Reuse them
by: Anonymous

Use them, register, store things in them, or pass them to people who run charity events.

used in our garage sale
by: Anonymous

My daughter and I used them at our garage sale. Some people liked the idea of a bag for their goodies with handles on them and so cute also.

Did this after wrapping gifts
by: Anonymous

I just wrapped Christmas and birthday gifts for friends who will open them outside our home and then organized the bags, tissue, ribbon, tape, and tags left in the long plastic container that gets stored just under the bed.The ripped bags and tissue got tossed. This is the first year in a while that I've had to buy a couple gift bags because I needed a very large one and a birthday one.

Decluttering Gift Bags by Donating Them
by: Anonymous

My local library has "Christmas shopping" for children every Saturday in November. They ask for small items to be donated, and I've donated old jewelry and scarves and wallets, etc. I've put the jewelry in old jewelry gift boxes, and I also include gift bags.

Gift bag donation
by: Chris

My daughter-in-law gave me a huge bag of gift bags she didn't want. I kept what I wanted then went through mine as well. In the end I had a huge bag of gift bags I didn't need or want. As long as I was going through my bin, I added to: from: tags, little boxes, and fabric bags as well. I posted free bags on my neighborhood site and within an hour someone came and picked them up. They were going to be used for handing out gifts at Christmas. They messaged me thanking me for my generosity.

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