I’ve been very busy around here organizing the ridiculous amount of kids clothes we have. Since we do plan on having more children, and since baby Xia will grow into Jada’s clothing, I am keeping everything that we have.
We get a lot of hand-me-downs too, such a blessing! That means that so far I have everything for a girl from newborn to size 7, plus some 8-10’s I’ve picked up to save for Jada to grow into. And I have everything for a boy from newborn to size 5! That is a LOT of clothes!
How do I keep up with it all? Well, up until now I’ve just been throwing them into a storage tub as they’ve outgrown stuff.
They were somewhat sorted, but I was guilty of mixing things up as well. I spent the good part of yesterday and this morning sorting things into proper tubs, and labeling everything. You have to label!
Here is the ultimate round-up to help give you an idea of how to keep things looking good (and staying organized!) in the future.
Here are some tips to help you keep your kids’ clothes organized and out of the way!
Label, Label, Label
I already mentioned that labeling is important – but I’ll say it here again just to really drive the point home! You’ve got to label absolutely everything or you’re going to go bananas.
I found some bumper sticker paper in our office supplies, so I printed off some nice labels for my tubs. Everything has the gender, clothing and shoe sizes labeled on them. This will make it so much easier to find what I’m looking for!
Find a Great Storage Place
One of the most important things to do when you’re trying to figure out where to store clothes for the long term (I’m not talking about the daily wear items here, but instead, the ones that you only need once or twice a year), is to store them in totes. That way, you can stash them all out of the way.
Where in the world do you store all of those totes, you ask? In my husband’s storage building, since we don’t have a basement. He built a nice loft area above his workshop.
That’s my spot, where he so generously allows me to store anything I want. (And I’m very grateful for the extra space!) That’s where our winter clothes and maternity stuff goes, too.
The workshop loft might not be an option for you – and that’s okay! Just make sure you find a spot that works well for you, your family, and your unique organizational needs. It could be the basement, the attic, or the garage – but make sure you store wisely.
Have a Dedicated Spot for Everyone and Everything
If you have multiple children sharing a room, make sure each kid has his or her own spot for their clothing. This can help avoid confusion and “stolen” clothing items!
Another tip is to dedicate a specific spot for each type of clothing item. You could have one drawer for tops and another for pajamas, another for socks and underwear, and so on.
The Marie Kondo method of storing clothing recommends keeping all items in drawers. You might be wondering how that could ever be possible – fitting all of your kids’ clothing into drawers? No way!
The reality is that you can fit a lot more clothing than you might think when you switch your mindset.
Store it upright by folding it and standing it up vertically. You’ll reduce a lot of the closet space you once needed and it will be much easier for you to see what you have when you store it in this way.
Since you aren’t stacking clothes on top of each other, it will also be easier for your kids to see and select what they want to wear without disrupting the entire organizational system you’ve created in the drawers. Genius!
Make it All Accessible
Wouldn’t your life be so much easier if you could convince your kids to keep their own closets tidy?
You can – by making everything accessible. Create a system that works for your entire family – and one that is easy for your children to maintain for themselves.
You can have double rods for you to hang clothes on as well as open shelving and bins that are easy for the littlest organizers to access with their tiny hands. Baskets help, too!
Use Space Saving Hangers
Your biggest enemy in organizing your closets might be that you aren’t using the right kinds of hangers. Consider switching to a slimline hanger. These use less room than traditional ones so you can store more clothing without having to pack them in quite so tightly. Plus, they’re non-slip – no more half-hung up shirts or pants in the closet!
I already mentioned the idea of double rods when I was talking about how to make things more accessible. However, this is a tip that’s worthy of mention again. Double rods work wonders when it comes to organizing a closet.
Kids can put their own clothing away on laundry day so you don’t have to if you use lower rods that let them access their own space. You won’t have to worry about the chore – and it teaches them valuable organizational skills.
Come Up With a Kid-Friendly System
Enlist the help of your kids in creating a kid-friendly storage space and system for keeping things neat and tidy.
The system should be one that makes sense to you but more importantly one that makes sense to your kids. It might involve hanging similar items together so your kids can pick out their own clothes and put them away quickly or it might involve color-coordinating gear and hanging it by category.
You should also consider height when you’re developing your system. You might be able to reach everything in the closet with ease, but your kids probably can’t. Use lower shelves for often-used toys and clothing and higher shelves for out-of-season clothes and infrequently used items.
Whatever the case may be, come up with a system that works for everyone – and stick to it!
Baskets and Bins to the Rescue
Bins and baskets work great for tiny hands. Not only do they help control the buildup of clutter but they also make it easy when it comes to finding things.
You can use a mix of different containers to suit the variety of items your kid’s closet needs to contain. Whether it’s shoes or toys or stuffed animals, fun baskets (especially collapsible ones!) will keep everything within reach.
Color Coordination is Key
When you’re trying to stay organized and keep track of everything that needs to be stored, color coordination is huge. You can store all toys of a similar type in similar color baskets as a way to stay organized and make it easier for your kids to find what they need.
Make a Special Shoe Spot
It’s no secret that kids’ shoes often end up in a jumbled mess on the floor. Avoid this by giving your kids a special place to stash their shoes. Whether it’s in bins or baskets or even on shelves with multiple tiers, find a functional solution that works well for your family.
Use the Door
Consider investing in a few hanging over-the-door organizers. These work well for shoes but you don’t have to rely on them solely for that purpose alone. They’re also great for storing things like stuffed animals, toys, and clothes.
Hooks to the Rescue
A few centrally-located hooks will make it easy for your kids to get their bags, jackets, jewelry, or scarves organized – leading to a much more organized closet. Choose colorful, attractive options to add charm and functionality to a cluttered closet.
Not feeling the hooks? Why not add some pegboards? THese are great, especially for teenagesr and “tween”agers with an overabundance of accessories. You can add hooks to the pegboard and easily rearrange them to accommodate more purses, scarves, hats, and jewelry.
Add an Outfit Planning Zone
If you’re sick of the early morning drama when it comes time to get dressed, an outfit planning zone might be a good choice. You can label each compartment with a day of the week, then separate out each day’s outfit into the corresponding spot. Make sure you add underwear and socks so things are truly as easy as can be!
Set Up a Laundry Section
If you have enough room for it, consider putting a laundry hamper or basket in the corner of the closet. This can help keep those never-ending piles of dirty clothes under control!
Sort Out Extra Sizes
Parents of very young children may find it difficult to keep on top of the ever changing sizes of clothing that their kids seem to go through! If that’s the case in your household, try keeping a few next size up pieces on deck by using paper dividers or different colored hangers to separate each size.
Similarly, you can keep a basket in the closet to place too-small clothing items. As soon as the basket fills up, you’ll know it’s time to go through them to donate or pass down to family members and friends.
Use Clear Storage Containers
Storage containers are helpful when it comes to being able to keep everything confined to one space. However, the downside is that it can be tough to see all the options that are available. Use clear storage containers or wire baskets to make it easier on yourself (and your kids).
That said, know that drawers that can be closed can help contain the chaos a bit better – and can offer a more streamlined appearance.
Determine What Needs to Go or Stay
When you organize the closets, make sure you’re taking an inventory of what your kids truly need and wear. While it might be nice in theory to fill your kids’ closets with lots of clothing, the reality is that it will make things more cluttered (meaning it’s harder to find clothes they an actually wear and also that they’ll outgrow clothing items before they get the chance to wear them – simply because they can’t find them!).
Be sure to keep a donated bag or bin on hand so that you can tackle seasonal switches and organizational projects with ease.
Keep a List of What is Needed
Sometimes you won’t be trying to organize what you do have – but instead, thinking of things that you don’t have and need. If that’s the case, it’s a good idea to keep a running list of everything you need.
After all your purging, sit down and make a list of what you need to shop for. It could be undies that are too small or PJs that are so worn out they barely fit properly. Make a detailed list of what you need to stock up on and it will make your life that much easier the next time you go shopping!
Wash Before Storing
If you plan on storing clothes that aren’t needed for the particular season, make sure you wash them first. This will take a lot of stress out of the equation later – especially because stains due to things like breast milk often don’t appear right away and only later, after being stored. This can be hugely frustrating!
Sort by Size Gender, and Season
When packing clothes away, do yourself a favor and label them by season, size, and gender. That way, it will be easy for you to find what you need exactly when you need it.
Rearrange as Needed
Don’t be afraid to revisit your closet organization system as your kids get older. You may need to install kits with expanding shelves and telescoping rods or switch up how you have things organized. It’s okay! That doesn’t mean your organizational system has failed – it just means that it’s growing with your family.
Some people find it helpful to approach clothing organization in a three-part way. You can do this once or twice a year (I like to do it once in the spring and once again in the fall). First, I set aside a few hours to go through the closet for a seasonal switch and organization. Then, I sort.
When I sort, I separate out all the clothing into four categories – keep, donate, repurpose, or trash.
Once I have a clear idea of what needs to go and what should stay, I find a specific place for each clothing item.
Organizing Kids Clothes: A Process, but Worth It!
While sorting the clothes, I’ve also taken this opportunity to pull out stuff we don’t need, clothing I know I’ll never use, and put it all into a sell/donate pile. I found a LOT of stuff to toss, enough to free up another large tub! Maybe I’ll make a little extra money selling some of it.
It will be nice to have everything all organized. This way I’ll know what I need (more 2T girls stuff), and what I have plenty of, so I won’t overbuy at yard sales. Almost finished!!
So, what about you? Do you hang onto everything, or is it easier for you to sell it and buy more as you go? How do you make it work in your home?
last update: Rebekah Pierce on 12/06/2021
A city girl learning to homestead on an acre of land in the country. Wife and homeschooling mother of four. Enjoying life, and everything that has to do with self sufficient living.