Packing Off Season Clothing Away

One of the things that I do when getting ready for the change of seasons (particularly from winter to spring and summer to fall) is packing off season clothing away. Now, I personally don’t own a lot of clothing and most are items that I wear all year long.

I do have a few items that I pack away when they’re not needed. For me, those are things like shorts and sun dresses or sweaters and coats and seasonal clothing (like Christmas pajamas). In this post, I’m going to take you through some important steps that you might want to take when packing away your clothing so that it is kept as safe as possible until you’re ready to use them again.

Packing Off Season Clothing Away

Packing Off Season Clothing Away

One question I get is “You say you wear most of your clothing all year long. How is that possible?” Well, first of all, I work from home in a heated/air conditioned house. So, what I wear on a day-to-day basis in May is often pretty much the same thing I wear on a day-to-day basis in October. I also do a lot of layering and so those clothes work really well no matter the season.

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Check over your clothing

1 – Start by going through your clothing and purge what you can. If you know you’re not going to wear it again, why take up storage space with it? Donate it if it’s still in good shape (or sell it and make a little extra money).

2 – Check the clothing you plan to keep. Do they need repairs? Do it now. It is so incredibly frustrating to pull it out when then seasons change and realize you actually can’t just wear it because it’s missing a button or has a tear in it.

3 – Be sure to empty your pockets. Yes, we have probably all seen those memes talking about finding things in the pockets of your winter coats the next season but it really is best to clean them out. You may need the items or they may be something that over time could create a mess in your pocket.

Clean your clothing

4 – Wash or dry clean the clothing before you put it away. Do up the zippers and buttons.

5 – Be sure to clean off salt stains from your boots and shoes, but don’t polish them before putting them away. That should be saved until you bring them back out again.

Before packing your clothing away, you might want to check out this article about safer alternatives to mothballs.

Packing it away

6 – Use old magazines or boot trees/shoe trees or something similar to hold the shape of any boots and shoes you are packing away to keep them in great shape for next time.

7 – It’s best to pack your clothing away in a dark location so that no discoloration occurs. Your garage is not a great location for them because it’s typically subject to temperature and humidity changes. Mine is kept in the basement and under my bed.

8 – I hang my coats and fall jackets on a clothing rack. I find this keeps them in better shape than they would be by placing them in bins. I like to pack them in garment bags to keep them clean but it’s important to use breathable garment bags not airtight ones.

9 – For sweaters, I place them in those vacuum storage bags so they take up less space and I can fit them under my bed. I honestly don’t know how “clothing experts” feel about those bags – I have seen mixed reviews on them. But honestly, I am willing to take the risk (and I don’t buy super expensive high end clothing – yes I still want it to last as long as possible anyway but so far, I haven’t found any issues with those bags).

10 – For anything else, I use under bed storage bins. In any of the bins or bags that I place clothing in, I add a little sachet with lavender and cedar in it to help keep moths away. You can use moth balls instead if you’d like but I prefer something that is safe for the kids and pets and doesn’t give off such an unpleasant aroma.

Taking Inventory

As I pack things away, I write down what I have. Maybe you can remember everything without having a list, but I always forget something! I mark the boxes/bags and then have a corresponding index card listing what is in each one.

The other thing I do is to make a list of things I’m going to need for the next season. For example, if I had to discard my black cardigan because it was too damaged to fix, I might write that down. Or perhaps I need new gloves/mittens. Maybe partway through that season I realized that I wanted a scarf with shades of turquoise in it to match my favorite sweater. Whatever it is, write it down so you’re ready when that season rolls around.

I keep all of these index cards in a file box to make it easy to refer to when needed.

It takes a little bit of work to get things switched out for the seasons but can be really helpful when it comes to saving space in your closet and dresser. It can also help you save money by taking better care of your garments.

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