The Dresser Drawer That Changed My Life
[ and other fantastic folds ]
May 05, 2016
There’s one thing that consistently gets the most excited “oohs” and “ahhs” from my clients. It even helped get me my first job as a professional organizer. The woman who did my home interview later told me, “You had me at your drawers.” And after helping me move my dresser into a new apartment I heard a friend ask his wife, "Can you fold my shirts the way Christina does?" I understand the reactions because I’ll never forget that fateful day my junior year of college when I saw my friend, Marissa, open her dresser drawer and her shirts were folded like this -->
It blew my mind and changed how I organize drawers forever. I starting applying this method not only to t-shirts, but to jeans, pajama pants, athletic pants- anything that works!
Here’s why: Traditional methods of folding stack on top of each other and make it difficult to see what you have. You have to lift up the shirts/pants on top to get to what’s below. What ends up happening is the shirts get jumbled and messy, like this:
So folding your clothes upright allows you to see what you have, specifically you can see what design is on the front of your shirts. So if you have five grey shirts, you can find the one you want faster and without messing up a whole stack. This allows you to retrieve it quickly and easily, which also means that your drawers STAY organized. The easier things are to retrieve, the better your systems will last. Finally, I have also found that folding this way usually allows you to fit more in your drawers, which I know you'll all be happy about.
You can experiment with which way you orient the “stacks” depending on the size of your drawers and clothes. I usually recommend going front to back, but if your drawers don't pull out far you may lose a lot of visibility at the back, in which case going side to side may be better.
You may find that you can even fold your tank tops, underwear, and shorts in this way.
This method doesn’t work particularly well for silky or blousey items, or for thick materials like sweaters or hoodies. But find what works with your clothes and go for it! If you can’t fold them upright like this, at least try to find ways to make them more visible. For example, I often roll tank tops and stick them upright in a box/drawer divider. It works well for unruly items like these and still allows for full visibility.
Remember- simply folding your clothes with this technique won’t magically solve all your problems! Make sure you’ve already sorted your clothes like with like (short sleeve tees separate from long sleeve, separate from tanks and shorts, etc), you’ve purged duplicates and worn out articles, as well as things you just don’t like and don’t wear anymore (and things that don’t fit!), and you’ve chosen the appropriate storage space based on size and amount of clothes (drawers, baskets, boxes within drawers, etc). And, of course, you still have to maintain it. So take the time to put things away properly and do a seasonal purge/refresh of each drawer. It’s worth it! Wake up tomorrow with your drawers beautiful and organized and you'll see what I mean.
Here are some tutorials on how to fold each type of clothing:
Bras + Undies
Boot Socks + Fuzzy Socks
A word about wrinkles: I've found that these methods produce similar amounts of wrinkles as traditional methods. But if wrinkles are a big concern to you make sure you fold immediately out of the dryer and smooth wrinkles out as you fold tight folds. Most of the things I recommend folding aren't your cute clothes you wear on a date or nice clothes you wear to work, but if it's still a concern see what you can hang instead! Maybe there are hanging clothes that could really be folded down to make room for the things you want to be wrinkle free.
Finally, these aren't the only methods for folding. They're just the ones I usually like best. Experiment and find what works for you and your wardrobe! The important thing is that your clothes are organized and you know where to find what you want when you want it!
Thanks for reading!
Christina + The Organizing Co.