Organizing kids’ clothes can be overwhelming. I only have one child, but I am blessed to have family and friends that are constantly handing me down clothing for my little boy. So, handling the clothing clutter has been an ongoing task for the last 5 years. Our son’s closet is not too big, not too small; I think is just the right size. However, it’s builder’s grade so it does not have any special built-in shelving to help me organize better. He also has a large dresser that helps me -and him!- to keep his clothes organized. But not having shelves inside the closet, didn’t stop my efforts for being organized, and I created a nice – low budget- setup that you too can re-create at home.
I am breaking this post into two posts as it was a two-part project. This is Part 1 of Organizing Kids’ Clothes, later you can check Part 2.
So here is where we start. My son’s closet consist of two sliding mirrored doors. At first, I did not like them in a plain boring room, but when I created his nautical nursery, I could not love them more! They make a small room look bigger and reflect all the beautiful sunlight that comes in each morning.
Pretty, right? But behind closed doors, all his clothes were in total disarray. It might not look like it, but I knew I needed to do some major clothing decluttering and purging to do. If you look closely on the left bottom corner of the picture below, there is white trash bag that I have kept there for a few months now. Every time I went to dress my son and something did not fit, I would toss it inside the bag. On the other side of the closet (picture on the right), I had a bag of clothing that was hand-me-down clothes from my nephew and my neighbors’ kids. Those clothes were a little too big for my son at the time so I set them aside. So, I ‘ kind of ‘ had a system, it just wasn’t pretty.
The dresser was OK, it just needed to be purged. When you have small children (and you are blessed to have people that gives you clothes!) you must declutter clothing more often. They grow fast, and also stain and rip their clothes…life happens.
Organizing Kids’ Clothes: Fold or Hang?
I posted a question on our Facebook Group, asking what is the best option: to fold or hang T-shirts. I have been folding our son’s t-shirts since the day he was born. Folding up onesies was so easy, right? but now, the shirts are getting bigger and taking up more space. What I felt was like, there were many t-shirts that were not being used because they would always be at the bottom of the drawer. The same ones would be pulled out, used, washed, folded and put away on top.
A reader was quick to answer:
I guess it would depend on how much space you have for his shirts. I would hang them up if there’s not enough room in his dresser.
And truthfully, I have more space that I can ask for. I just needed to sort through the shirts and come up with a system so the shirts would be rotated and all of them worn. Here is what I did and you can do too for organizing kids’ clothes:
- Grab a t-shirt that you know is a good fit for your child, and use it as a guide to start sorting through the rest. My rule of thumb is to keep those t-shirts that are within 1 inch smaller or bigger than the guide. “Train 4 The Win” was my guide, since it is a recent purchase.
2. Fold everything you want to keep and that you don’t mind your children to grab, put on and go. I decided to hang only those t-shirts that I would like to save for any other occasion different than just playing outside with dirt and riding his bike. So, those t-shirts that are still in good condition (or are new, or too big to use for now) I hung.
I usually fold clothes in the laundry room on top of the dryer, but when sitting down… you will find lazy me, folding t-shirts on his bed. Thanks to the mirrored closet doors, you have proof that I spent some time working on this for real!
I use the same lap desk I use when blogging from the couch. You might think is not brilliant…but I think it is! I like to fold things flat and neat. Go figure.
3. Once everything is sorted, put the folded t-shirts back in the drawer and hang the other ones. Here is a quick tip when storing folded t-shirts and shorts.
Check out the picture below. The red t-shirts are stacked collar over collar, as opposed to the blue stack that has been alternated. See the difference?
Same thing happens with shorts…
All shorts, t-shirts and pajamas, stayed in the dresser. I like to sort them by color, that way it’s easier to find a match with the shorts.
Organizing Kids’ Clothes with Bins and Baskets
I don’t have to say it again, right? Maybe I do: I love baskets. I used them here, here, here and here. Because I don’t like small items scattered on shelves, I have always kept our son’s underwear and socks inside these two bins, inside the side cabinet of his dresser. It looks kind of organized, but in the back of my mind I knew it was time to purge socks and underwear too. Plus, there were some mysterious bags behind the socks’ bin.
I pulled out the basket, and boy! there were plenty of socks that he totally outgrew! The mysterious bags was nothing but brand new socks. Phew!
After all that sorting, one entire bag was out the door.
I found this beautiful striped rope basket at Target and swapped it for the one that was holding the socks before (which is mine, from my closet… Give it back to me!).
I said at the beginning of the post, that I would break Organizing Kids’ Clothes into two posts, as it was a two-part process: Dresser organization and closet organization. Tomorrow we will move onto the closet, and I will link back here.
In the meantime, you can check all these organization tasks we have done these past 10 weeks. It’s been certainly a challenge, especially to be able to bring you the content on a weekly basis, but it has also been an amazing way to get my house in order. I feel like I am totally taking control of many areas of my home that were overlooked and abandoned! Yay!
You too, can make this happen. Look at it this way: if I can do it, while taking pictures of the process, editing, uploading, and writing a blog post each week, I know for sure that you can do it too. Take some of these tasks and put them into practice. Join the challenge, work at your own pace. A little progress is better than nothing!
Have a great day, see ya tomorrow with Part 2!