Storage unit overflowing; cluttered drawers; dusty, elusive winter clothes… Badly stored clothing can quickly turn your home into a nightmare. Do you dream of an orderly wardrobe? It can be done: optimal clothes storage, which lets you neatly tidy away your belongings and above all, view it easily, can be achieved with a few simple tricks. Where to store clothing, shoes, everyday bedding, etc: here are our ideas to get you motivated!
Clothes end up lying about everywhere: in the adults’ and kids’ bedrooms, the bathroom, the living room…. some clothes are worn every day, while others are for occasional or future use. Some delicate items have to be stored with care—ideally in a storage bag, on a clothes rail. And then come the accessories which are easily lost, mismatched socks, scarves that get jumbled up with belts… In short, due to the amount and variety of clothes you have, it can be very difficult to keep things tidy. Wardrobe storage quickly becomes a headache. Don’t worry, there are plenty of modular storage solutions, compatible with tasteful decor and suitable for both accessories and bulky items. Mix up your storage following our advice, and storing clothes will be easy-peasy.
Clothes storage: purge first
To start with, a deep clean of your wardrobe is a must. Don’t wait for next year’s spring cleaning to check if everything in your closet is well used or not. Do you often find—stuffed into small bags or relegated to the back of the shelves—clothes that are too small, mismatched socks, an unwearable cardigan, moth-eaten jumpers, or old fashioned dresses? Time for a wardrobe purge: sort through all of the clothes that you haven’t worn for over a year. Make a pile of everything that you need or want to get rid of. Then, why not organise a wardrobe-clearing party with your friends, to swap things that are in good condition but you no longer wear? Your friends will be delighted at the chance to update their outfits, and you will get rid of a few more things from your wardrobe. Any clothes that don’t have a taker can go to a charity shop. So you kill two birds with one stone, and the real tidying can begin. Follow our ten tips.
Maximise your drawer storage
1. Vertically folded tops
In small homes, it’s not always possible to fit in a built-in wardrobe or even a normal one. A chest of drawers is a good choice to store your clothes in this case, especially if you use the a vertical folding and storage system used in the Konmari method developed by Marie Kondo. By carefully folding your tops ‘vertically’ and organising them by colour, you can optimise space while making it easy to see all of your belongings at a glance. In addition, vertical storage avoids damaging the clothes that are always relegated to the bottom of the heap.
2. Drawer dividers for underwear and accessories
Drawer dividers and organisers are really useful storage solutions to separate items such as underwear, accessories, etc. You can also keep any small things, trinkets etc in small, pretty boxes or little jars: cufflinks, pairs of socks, tights, bras, etc. So you can say bye-bye to the catch-all drawer, which has to be completely gutted for you to find that sock, or the matching bra and pants.
Organise your wardrobes with a suitable storage system
3. Hangers to keep dresses and shirts organised
In the wardrobe, classifying your clothes by type and size makes them much easier to find. This tip is also borrowed from the Konmari method!
To do so, exploit the various types of hanger available in shops. They are designed for specific purposes: delicate dresses, shirts and blouses, ties, belts, scarves, hooks, non-slip, etc. In any event, you’ll need plenty because hangers help prevent damage to certain items, they save you space and increase the visibility of your clothes collection.
4. Hanging shelves in your wardrobe
Narrow canvas shelves fit into all types of wardrobe. They are a must-have when your storage space is minimal. With these little gems, there’s space for everything! They’re a great solution for keeping the accessories that go with clothes handy: belts, detachable hoods, gloves and hats, etc.
Keep your clothes handy
5. Hang your stuff up: hooks, pegs and racks
The worst thing about tidying up clothes is not the storage itself, but the clothes you’ve already worn, that you can’t put back in the piles of clean clothes, but that can still be worn before being thrown into the laundry basket. You’ll wear the jeans again in two days, or that wool sweater that you put on every night, the pyjamas, the gardening clothes… So you should plan somewhere for both clean and already worn clothes. Install wall units in your bedroom, for example, or in your bathroom, entrance way, garage: racks, hooks, pegs, rails… Door hooks can also be used behind wardrobe doors, to organise clothes inside of your storage units.
6. Storing clothes when they’re not in the wardrobe: racks, baskets, storage lockers
Movable, discreet, in bamboo or steel…clothes racks are also ideal for getting tomorrow’s outfit ready. Installing a rail in the bathroom lets you hang up bathrobes, dressing gowns, and pyjamas with ease and without cluttering the towel rack. As for storage baskets, these let you keep your hats, gloves, scarves etc handy near the clothes rack. We love wicker baskets, which, in addition to being a sassy storage solution, are trendy.
Storage lockers can also be co-opted from their original purpose, and used in the entrance cupboard to store shoes or hats.
Lastly, use vacuum storage bags to tidy coats or other bulky items away into wheeled storage drawers that can slide easily under the bed.
Store linens or out-of-season clothing
7. A vacuum storage bag
Store linens that are not used regularly in vacuum storage. Depending on what items you want to store and where you will put them, go for storage totes or vacuum storage bags (also known as compression bags). Vacuum storage totes have the advantage of being easy to stack, in a chest or on top of your wardrobe. Bags are generally smaller, more flexible and perfectly at home in your suitcases. Such vacuum storage will save you money while protecting your bedding and towels from damp, dust or moths. They will also prevent your wardrobe from getting too full of summer or winter clothes, depending on the season. Finally, vacuum storage is perfect for putting away baby or children’s clothes that have become too small, but that you want to keep, lend to a loved one, or sell.
8. Spare light clothes rails
You could also use a light, spare wardrobe for all those out-of-season items, housed in the attic or basement. You can easily keep winter suits or summer dresses here. Made from canvas, inexpensive and pliable, these fabric wardrobes perfectly complement your collection of cases and vacuum bags. Do not forget to hang a moth repellent! Reminder: cedar is the most natural repellent available.
Organise your shoes according to use
9. Sort your footwear by category
The shoe rack is often the first piece of storage to spill over! To store your shoes properly, as with everything else, begin by sorting through them. Gather them up into pairs, then sort by type, and store according to how often you use them. The footwear you use most often should go on shelves or in a dedicated shoe rack, within easy reach in the bedroom or at the front door. Kids’ shoes, or the least worn pairs, can be kept on lower shelves: footwear used daily should be within reach.
10. Boxes for your less-worn shoes
Next, you will carefully sort the rest by type. One effective option to find them easily is to keep them in different places depending on their purpose, and ensure they don’t clutter up your bedroom. City shoes clearly need to be in your wardrobe, either in hanging shelves or cardboard boxes. Trainers, garden shoes or wellies can be stored in the garage or in the laundry-room, for example in transparent stackable plastic boxes with vertical lid.
In summary, to maximise your clothes storage options, remember:
- start by sorting through your belongings
- invest in a few simple storage solutions to divide your drawers and wardrobes and optimise shelf space
- put aside the most bulky and less expensive items such as winter coats or ski clothes, and store these in vacuum bags that can be kept under the bed or stairs, in the loft, etc
- save cardboard boxes, jars, reuse plastic boxes or shoe boxes to create small storage spaces perfect for keeping your accessories inside the wardrobe
With these tips and tricks, getting things neat and tidy is much easier and even fun! It’s a good idea to regularly sort through your clothes to keep your closets and wardrobes tidy and functional. You’ll see—a tidy wardrobe will make you feel much calmer.