Now that spring has finally sprung where we live, we’re getting ready to enjoy the new, warmer weather in all kinds of ways. One of the most time consuming but absolutely most satisfying ways to get ready for spring is to do a bit of spring cleaning! For us, this process includes clearing out our winter clothing into safe, space efficient storage and giving our spring and summer clothes the central spots in our closets and drawers so we can have easy access to them all season long! Each year, however, we see how much work that process looks like and we feel intimidated, so this year we’ve been looking at more permanent, more space efficient ways to organize our things so that we have a quicker, easier time next year, even if the process is a little more time consuming now.
Just in case you’re as interested in finding a few new ways to store your winter clothing away for spring as we were, if not more, here are 15 of the most helpful tips we’ve come across in our research so far!
1. Inset closet drawers
Do you have one of those customizable wardrobe closets from IKEA or a similar store that you can add and subtract pieces from as your needs change over the years? Then you’re going to love this awesome clothing storage tip from In Style! They suggest adding a double row of drawers half way down your wardrobe to give you a built-in place to store the clothes you aren’t using so you can hang the ones you are, without hiding the cold weather clothes so far away that you can’t reach a sweater if suddenly there’s a cold night.
2. Clean your garments before you put them away
If you’ve been conducting your own storage tips searches as well, then you know that a lot of what you’ll find is recommendations for how you should prepare your clothes for storage before you actually stash them away. These are some of our favourite tips because we often find them the most useful! For example, Life Storage recommends washing all of your fall and winter clothes before you store them to ensure they’re dirt and odour free before they sit for a few months. They’ll feel and smell a lot more fresh when you dig them out at the end of the summer!
3. Fold your coats rather than hanging them
During the chilly seasons, we usually hang our coats up for easy access, to keep them out of their way, and to keep their shape so they’re not wrinkled or creased when we put them on each morning. During the months that we store them away, however, we actually like to take this recommendation from Style Caster and fold our coats instead of hanging them up for months on end. This makes sure that they don’t end up with hanger marks in the shoulders that stick out funny when you put them on next September and it also clears out your closets so you can hang summer dress clothes instead.
4. Clean out plastic containers first
If you’re going to fold all your warm winter clothing, you’re going to need a place to put the piles of garments but we know all too well that there isn’t always room or customizability to just insert drawers like we were talking about above. That’s why we invested in a few plastic tubs with clicking lids that will keep things inside in and everything else out! Just like Nellie’s All Natural‘s does here, however, we always make sure to clean and wipe out the tubs before we put our clothing in, even when they’re brand new, just in case.
5. Get rid of clutter as you put things into storage
As another part of our spring cleaning process, we usually make sure to clear out a few things that don’t fit anymore, are damaged, or that we simply find ourselves not wearing. That’s why this tips page from Safe Store caught our eye so well! Like us, they suggest doing your best to downsize unused garments and get them out of the way entirely while you’re going through your things anyways, just to save a little time and space and stop yourself from accumulating things year after year.
6. Hang pants if you have room to avoid wrinkling
During the warmest months of the year, we can always be found wearing shorts, summer dresses, or light skirts. There’s just nothing we love more than letting the sun and the breeze touch our skin while we can! That’s why we don’t often see our long pants for months at a time! We store them away and we don’t come back for them until we absolutely have to. Unlike our coats, however, we learned from The Spruce that our pants do better hanging for long periods of time than they do folded because that helps them avoid wrinkling and stubborn creasing.
7. Invest in zipping sealed storage
Do you perhaps live somewhere that has a very long summer, so you only need your warm weather clothing for a couple months of the year and you always have to store them very well because it’s a lot more long term? In that case, perhaps you’d prefer soft plastic zipping storage over stacking, hard plastic tubs! House Beautiful shows you how useful these packs can be, particularly if you live in the kind of warm place that’s home to summertime pests who like to sneak into your home.
8. Use clear stacking tubs and a labeling system
What if you really like the plastic tubs idea but you’ve never liked the fact that you have to go searching through them all the moment you need something in the fall because the sides of the ones you have are opaque? Even if you can see through the sides of the tubs, do you find that you always forget which tubs you put with things in? Then we’d definitely suggest taking a look at how Typical Suburban Family making cute little labels to slide down the sides, face out, so they can keep track of what clothing is stored in which tub.
9. Wooden crates for shoes of all sizes
When it comes to storing seasonal shoes, things get a little more complicated if you want them to keep their shape, wear less even when you’re not wearing them, and look as good when you take them out as they did when you put them in. That’s why we actually chose to go with this stacking crates idea from ,Woman’s Day! They might not have meant theirs for long term storage, since they actually put theirs by the door for the shoes that get used all the time, but we have a spare room and we found this solution effective for storing all kinds of shoes that don’t get worn as often or have been put on the back burner until the cold weather comes back.
10. Pool noodles to keep tall boots standing
Perhaps you’ve already got a spot that’s just fine for storing your boots until fall and winter come again but you’re worried about them keeping their shape and staying upright in the meantime until you wear them again? We don’t like when our boots flip over because they get creased on the side and they’re never the same after that. That’s why we thought this upcycling idea from MacGyverisms was such a useful one! They show you how to cut a length of foam pool noodle to stick inside the tops of your boots so they stay upright while you’re not using them.
11. Keep your woollens and knits safe from moths
We’ve always been avid knitters so we have a lot of woollen garments in our closet that need storing for the summer, but we’re always very particular about how they’re stored, especially since we put the time in to make them ourselves. That’s why we appreciated finding this guide to keeping knitwear safe from moths on WikiHow! They walk you through everything from moth traps to plastic sleeve storage to lavender essential oil to ward the little wool-eating menaces off over the summer.
12. Air tight storage and wool washes
Did we really catch your attention when we started talking about woollen garments and knitwear because you’re an avid knitter too and now you’re concerned and in need of as much advice as possible? In that case, here’s another page full of tips and tricks to help you really make sure that the moths don’t get your beloved sweaters! Check out how The Spruce combined air tight storage and the use of no-rinse wool wash to protect their clothes to the fullest.
13. Vacuum and dry clean before packing things away
We’ve already mentioned washing your clothing and wiping out plastic tubs and sleeves before storing your winter clothing away for the spring, but what if you’re still a little paranoid about how your clothes will fare while in storage because you live in a very dusty place? Then here’s another cleaning resource to help you out even further than the ones you’ve already seen! National Storage gives you advice for making sure everything is vacuumed and dry cleaned effectively before being put into tubs and casings.
14. Keep your furs in a cool place away from humidity
Have you actually been feeling quite prepared this year thanks to effective storage and preparation in past years, so you’re not concerned about most of your clothing and all your worry is reserved for the vintage furs your grandmother left you? Then here’s a useful tutorial for taking good care of them on Ceresnie & Offen Furs! They suggest storing the furs, hung loosely and in a line, hung in a cool place that you know will stay dry, free of humidity, and with a low temperature all summer.
15. Repurpose cloth napkins to keep dust from falling on stored winter coats
Did we make you pause momentarily a few times over the course of this list because we mentioned living in places that get very dry and dusty over the summer and that’s where you are right now while you’re trying to figure out the best clothing storage solutions for you? In that case, we have a feeling you’ll appreciate this idea from Robin Baron Design for upcycling cloth napkins you’re not using anymore! Check out how they made hanger dust covers for protecting the tops of your winter coats while they hang in a cool place throughout the summer.
Do you have other awesome tips for storing your winter clothes away for the spring and summer that you don’t see on our list? Tell us all about how you do it in the comments section!