Keeping a tidy linen closet is harder than it sounds. Most people don't realize that organizing a linen cabinet is a skill that parents often forget to teach.
You want a linen closet that contains stacks of neatly folded sheets, blankets, and tablecloths when you need them. Actually getting there takes attention and intention. Fortunately, anyone can learn to fold their linens tightly and stack sheets by the set if you think about each step you are taking and the organization system you create.
Here are our best tips to teach yourself how to organize your linen closet. Don't worry, it's easy.
Practice Folding Your Linens
If the whole linens thing is a mess and you always wind up with a wrinkled jumble (more common than we'd like to admit) this just means linen skills weren't part of your childhood. Don't be shy about teaching yourself to fold sheets. Take a big space. Use your bed or the dining table (or a clean floor) and practice smoothing out the linens and then folding them into neat triangles. Watch YouTube videos or just intuit your way through. Sometimes, thirds work better than halves.
Fitted sheets are the toughest, so here's our best tip: Fold the pocket corners into each other and shake while holding the folded creases. Then fold over the rounded bits to form a puffy but rectangular package.
Organize by Set, Purpose, Size, or Color
Organize your linens based on how you want to access them. For sheets, most people sort by size and set, then by color. For curtains and tablecloths, you can sort by color first. The most important thing is to have a system that works for you. You may want to grab whole sets of sheets at once, or whole table settings at once, or pick and choose based on color and size.
Assign Shelves and Drawers
Once you have an organization in mind, assign space in your shelves and drawers. Each shelf will usually hold two to four stacks of linens, or one to two stacks of blankets and drapes. Knowing the assigned shelf creates a place so that linens return to their proper place when put away and you can always find the linens you need quickly.
Fold to Fit the Shelf
Consider the size of your shelves when folding your linens. You can make neater stacks and fit more linens into your closet when you fold them to fit the shelves. If the way you folded at the dryer doesn't work, refold with the shelf dimensions in mind. Do this for each linen in the stack and you will have a neat, tidy linen closet with efficient rows of linens along each shelf.
Stack Straight or Largest to Smallest
Stacking items of identical size, fold them all the same way and stack them so the same fold shows to the front. This will make your stack look uniform and tidy.
If you are stacking a set - like sheets and pillowcases - be sure to stack the largest item first and the smallest on top. That would mean fitted sheet, flat sheet, and pillowcases in that order or tablecloth, table runner, and napkins for a table set instead.
Always choose the largest fold to face outward, so that each item shows as one grabbable fold and looks as tidy as possible.
Use Containers to Line Up Smaller Linens
For napkins, pillowcases, and other abundant small cloth items, grab a few organizers, trays, or boxes to contain them. Line your smaller linens up vertically so their largest fold shows like the spines of books facing you. This looks tidy and elegant. If you have drawers you can use them this way or insert your own organizers into the drawers themselves.
Label and Tag for Quick-Grab Efficiency
If you have a few items that look similar but the size matters, label them. Duvet covers, for example, should be separated by size and marked so you know which one you are grabbing. You can also label your shelves by linen size and set to make retrieval easy - and to help others in the household put away linens according to your system.
Refold and Tidy Periodically
The final trick to keeping your linen closet organized is periodic refolding. Don't be shy about pulling a whole stack and folding it so the size and corners all match in the closet. Linen closets can become messy over time with fast drops and quick retrievals that may rumple your linens on the shelves. By refolding when you notice disarray, you can keep your linen cabinet organized and magazine-perfect throughout the year.
Organizing your linen cabinet is much easier than most people realize. Here at Edesia, we love to help homeowners make the most of every feature. Contact us today for more great ideas on improving your home inside and out.