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Organizing Kids Clothes

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Photo of kids clothing in a closet.

Keeping clothing organized is a real chore especially if you have kids in the house. Making it so that your child's clothing is clean and easy for them to locate can make mornings in your household a lot less stressful. This is a guide about organizing kids clothes.

Solutions: Organizing Kids Clothes

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Tip: Girl's Fashion Show to Clean Out Closet

Here is a fun way to get your girls ages 7 and up to clean out their closest. Hold a "Fashion" show, where they model each of their summer/winter outfits. Any outfit that does not fit, or that they no longer want can go to a charity like Goodwill or a younger family member.

My mom started me on this when I was 11 and I still do it every spring and fall as a fun way to organize the clothes I want to keep and those that I need to give away.

If your budget is tight, have them sell the unwanted clothes at a garage sale or consignment store. They can use the money made to buy something new to them from Goodwill or the consignment store where they sold their unwanted clothes.

By McCollonough from TN

Tip: Pin Toddler Outfits Together

If you have children at your home whose clothes are strung and strewed all over, crying because they aren't old enough to find something to wear themselves, here's a trick I learned from raising six kids; his, mine, and ours!

When you do the laundry and it comes time to fold the clothes and separate them to put away, fold the pants or skirts lengthwise, lay the shirt or blouse face down, and fold it back around over the pants, making a "sandwich". Then, take tiny little safety pins and pin the bottom sleeve, pants legs, and top sleeve together.

The two and three year olds can't get the pins undone to try on a dozen outfits a day, you won't be getting the children's sizes confused on a busy morning and having to sort that out, and even hubby can figure out how to dress a toddler in clothes that match (don't you hate it when he meets you somewhere in public and has your little girl dressed in a frilly pink plaid skirt and her brother's camoflauge T-shirt?)

Plus, when you have a whiny "I don't want that shirt" morning ,you can say, "Well, pick one you like and bring it to me when you decide", knowing whichever one they pick, it will be a decent outfit and thereby ending a back and forth argument. Packing the diaper bag or backpack? A tenth of a second; just grab something and go!

By dollyslaffn from Darien,GA

Tip: Fold Kids Clothes Into Bundles

I have always folded clothing according to type, pants in a pants drawer, shirts with shirts, etc. Just recently I have begun to fold the kids clothing into "bundles" with shirts, pants, undies and socks, all rolled up into the longest article of clothing. My kids have just 10 bundles each. I try to limit it so that there are no unloved clothing stuffed into the back of drawers.

I know just what the kids need when they outgrow an article (or 2), to make the bundles complete. This saves me money because I know when to stop buying. It also saves me time because the kids know that when there are only 2 left, to tell me so I can do laundry. I only wish I had thought of it 10 years ago!

Tip: Day of the Week Hangers

Because of our work schedules, my husband usually gets our 2 year old son dressed in the morning. He's a wonderful father, but heaven help him, cannot put matching outfits together very well! To make things easier, I made up a set of hangers with the days of the week on them. On Sundays, I go through my son's closet and put outfits together, then hang one on each "day of the week" hanger. On weeknights, I take out the outfit for the next day and hang it on a hook that's next to our son's changing table. That way, my husband has an outfit all set to go in the morning, and I can rest assured that my son won't be going out in public looking like he chose his outfit himself!

By Lisa

Tip: Label Clothes Size on Children's Hangers

Because my kids grow so fast, we always end up with several sizes of clothes in circulation at any one time. So in my children's closets I added labels on the hangers of all their clothes with the size printed on it. That way, I can see what size a garment is without pulling it out of the closet.

By Liz H. from Charleston, SC

Tip: Quick Way to Sort Kids Clothing

Instead of trying all those clothes on my kids each season to see what fits (and my kids get tired after the first outfit), I lay an outfit (pants and shirt) that fit them just right on the bed as a pattern. I then lay the clothes on top the pattern outfit. Anything shorter or smaller than what is on the pattern outfit goes into the resale pile. This is very quick way to sort kids clothes.

By Jamie

Tip: Help Kids Match Clothes with Photos

Help Kids Match Clothes with PhotosMy 4 and 5 year olds pick out their own school clothes after I used this tip and are always in matching outfits. Before school started this year, we played model and took a photo of them in each outfit. Now they just look for the outfit they want in their albums and know what they can wear with what.

By Randa from San Marcos, TX

Tip: Keep Your Children's Clothing Organized

Organizing Baby Clothes

Quite often when you buy or are given baby or toddler clothes they come in outfits. A matching top and bottom, maybe even with a matching hat. One way to keep these items together is to fold them and put them in large zip-lock bags before putting them away. You will be able to easily see the outfit and the bags can be used over and over again.

Organizing Bigger Kids Outfits

If you have young children who are just learning how to dress themselves try organizing clothing by outfit. For example, hang a pair of slacks and a matching shirt in the closet together. Put the slacks on the hanger first and then put the shirt on over it. That way your child can just choose an outfit and get dressed.

Getting Kids To Put Their Clothes Away

The easier you can make putting clothes away for a child, the more likely they will be successful at it. One good thing to do is store clothing that won't be worn for a while. Make sure the child doesn't have more clothing that there is space to store it and establish drawers and locations where things should go. For example: T-shirts to in the t-shirt drawer, socks go in the sock drawer, shoes line up on the closet floor, and so on. You can even label where things should go with words, drawings, or photos. Give each child their own colored laundry basket and have them take it into their room to put clothing away.

Lay Outfits Out the Night Before

One of the leading causes of disorganized dressers and drawers is a child trying to get ready in the morning in a rush. If they get into the habit of laying out their outfit the night before it will make the mornings less stressful and help keep their room organized. For younger children, lay their outfit out for them.

Bigger Isn't Always Better

Keep in mind that most dressers are not ideal for children. A smaller dresser makes it much easier for children to deal with their clothing. Also, while the top drawer is the easier to reach for adults, some top drawers may require a stool for a child to see into. Keep a small stool nearby so the child doesn't have to hang on the drawer to look into it. Also, consider installing a short closet rod that your child can reach easier. It's easy to add an additional rod or just move the existing one lower.

Label the Labels

If you have more than one child, it can become difficult to remember which article of clothing goes with which child. One easy solution is to mark the initials of owners on the clothing tag with permanent ink. One of our readers also suggested using a different color for each child.

Keeping Socks Together

This won't completely solve the problem of unmatched socks, but certainly will help. Train your children to fold their socks together before they put them in the laundry basket. Also, it helps to always buy them the same brand, color, and style socks.

Tip: Dressing Kids in Matching Outfits

Because of our work schedules, my husband usually gets our 2 year old son dressed in the morning. He's a wonderful father, but heaven help him, he cannot put matching outfits together very well!

To make things easier, I made up a set of hangers with the days of the week on them. On Sundays, I go through my son's closet and put outfits together, then hang one on each "day of the week" hanger. On weeknights, I take out the outfit for the next day and hang it on a hook that's next to our son's changing table.

That way, my husband has an outfit all set to go in the morning. And I can rest assured that my son won't be going out in public looking like he chose his outfit himself!

By Lisa

Tip: Hang Everyday Clothes Inside Out

When putting clothes away in the closet, and you have a mix of everyday clothes and nicer clothes in the same place. I put the everyday use tops, blouses, and shirts on hangers inside out.

This is extremely helpful when I send someone to my closet to grab something, the kids stand and wonder which are school, dress, or doesn't matter pieces. Jeans go in the draw for any time wear and on a hanger for school or dress.

By Joyce from Benson, MN

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Questions

Here are questions related to Organizing Kids Clothes.

Question: Organizing Kids Clothing

How do you store clothes for your children that don't fit them yet? Containers?

By Keli J.


Most Recent Answer

By Kirsten [22]02/13/2012

I used some put-them-together cubes in the top shelf of the closet. I use them as open face bins, one with clothes too big for each child. When an older sibling outgrows something, it goes in the "too big for" bin for the next child who might wear it.

Question: Organizing Childrens Clothing

How do you organize your kids clothes when they have too many? I have wheedled my oldest daughter's clothes down some, but still not enough it seems. My youngest has way too many, but at the same time she is such a mess and always ruining her clothes with stains I can never get out, so I almost need a lot of clothes for her.

I just get so sick of so much laundry all the time. I thought maybe if I wheedled their clothes down to a certain number of tops and bottoms, or a certain number of "outfits", the laundry issue would get better. Really, how many outfits does one child need do you think? Any tips? Thanks.

By minnabird from Southcentral VA


Most Recent Answer

By Joan [2]10/03/2009

Everyone really wears about 4 favorite tops or shirts. Same with pants so with 4 days worth plus a couple of Sunday best type clothes they have plenty. It's also frustrating to wash and fold everything neatly only to stuff it into an overfull drawer. Everything else should go to a garage sale or goodwill. Let the kids organize what they can keep and what goes.

Archives

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Archive: Organizing Children's Clothing

Tip: Different Colors for Different Kids

If you have more than one child of the same sex, use small dots of different colors of fabric paint on the bottom of their socks. Each child gets their own color. There will be no wondering who owns which socks. This also works on toothbrushes, cups, mittens, underwear, etc.

By Barbara from Virginia Beach, VA


RE: Different Colors for Different Kids

My mother-in-law raised 6 kids. The first 4 (all boys) were fairly close in age. She bought socks in various colors, one boy wore only white socks, the next wore socks of a different color or design and so on. I don't know if this idea will work for everyone, but it sure worked for her family. (06/21/2006)

By AnnMel