Saturday, January 31, 2009

Folding clothes

If you like the look of tidy shelves, and tidy drawers in your wardrobe, then folding your clothes the right way will make a big difference. The best advice I can give you is to try and fold similar items to the same size. That way they will make a nice stack. But folding clothes well is also important to keep laundered clothes from creasing and needing re-ironing.

I wish I could say that I was some kind of a folding genius, but truthfully, I've just been sad enough to search the Internet and various books for folding techniques and learnt how to do them. Some of the methods below I have learnt from some clever online videos made by Linda Koopersmith from the Beverly Hills Organizer website where you too can see some of her videos, it's a great resource. Also, I would hate to be accused of plagiarism, so I'd rather confess to nicking these ideas than claim them as my own.

See this pile of clothes?
I'm going to show you how to fold each one of these items and pack them away nicely... so get your pile of laundry ready to try these ideas for yourself. Some of the folding methods might seem obvious to some, but I hope there is also something new here for you.

I'm starting with the intimates to get them out the way first...

Bras are relatively easy to fold, it's really just about tucking the straps and stacking them in the right sized container.
Start off by folding the bra in half, then fold the waist strap in by half.
Fold the waist strap in again so that it tucks into the cup.

Now fold down the straps.
Make sure all the straps are neatly tucked into the cup.And stack in a container wide enough for a single row of bras.
Pants (or panties if you like)

My intention really never was to show my pants on my blog, but for you dear reader I'm using a new freshly laundered pair (and creased I know, because of course I don't iron them!). This method can be applied to men's underpants and ladies bikini bottoms too. Start off with the pant bum down. Fold the one side in and over again so that it makes a straight line on the left.

Fold the other side in the same way until you end up with a rectangle. Fold the crotch area up, and fold down the waistband. That gives you a nice shape square shape to put into an organising box or stack up in a drawer.


These are especially for Ivy and Judy.
Start off with both socks on top of one another. Fold in the heel, then fold the sock in half. That leaves you with a clean rectangular shape.

Fold the rectangular shape in half again. That's basically how you fold socks, and now you can stack them up in a drawer organiser, or a cardboard box that's the width of your folded socks.

Or, you could take the cuff of the sock on the outside, and pull it over the sock. But remember to keep the tidy square shape as you pull the cuff over rather than forming a ball of crumpled socks. I know that they say this stretches the cuffs of the socks, but I've never noticed any misshapen socks yet. I prefer to do it this way because it's easy for Mr. L to keep them tidy.

Vets and Sleeveless tops
I'm demonstrating both at the same time, because the method is the same for both.

Fold the top part where the straps are down, leaving you with a rectangular shape.

Then fold the left side in a third of the way.

Fold the other right side over making a long rectangle.

Now fold the bottom of the top upwards so that the folded part is a square.

Keep folding upwards in a rolling motion until you end up with a square shape.

This method works well for stacking in drawers or organisers.

Once again, this is more or less the same idea, however there are the sleeves that also need folding in.
Fold the jumper to the right by a third, then fold the sleeve downwards to be parallel to the folded side.

Do the same on the other side, and start folding upwards as you would with a vest.

Fold the trousers in so that the seams in the legs match up, all on top of one another.

Once you have the trousers laid out flat fold them upwards in half, then in half again.

And voila! You have a neatly folded pair of trousers that can be stacked on a shelf.

That's it for now, as you can see the basics of good folding comes down to trying to get a rectangular or square shape (so fold all the awkward straps and shapes out the way first), once you have that, it's a case of folding in thirds or halves. I hope you've enjoyed the folding lessons. Most of these methods (except for the trousers) work best for drawer storage, but don't forget that I have a video clip to show how to fold a t-shirt so that they stack nicely on a shelf from a previous post.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend. Feel free to send me any photos of your tidy wardrobes! I'd love to put up a collection of 'inspiring wardrobe' photos in time for Spring.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Spring is on its way...

Oh yes, I can smell it in the air. Here in the Northern Hemisphere the days are slowly getting longer, and the snowdrops are just about starting to make an appearance. I do realise we are a few months away yet, but it's getting nearer. You don't only have to look outside to notice these things... generally I can feel my energy levels slowly rising and that feeling to sort out the house is thawing.

On Saturday I was meant to do nothing, just take a day to relax, read and do a bit of quilting. Instead I had the slightest urge to sort something out in the house. In the end I spent the entire Saturday unpacking my drawers and re-folding my clothes neatly. Now, I know some of you must think that I've wasted a chance to do nothing - a chance to have some 'me' time. But actually folding and re-organising things can be very therapeutic. I also realise that at this point I am sounding like I may suffer from an Obsessive Compulsive Disorder for organisation. But truthfully I am a born 'untidy person'. If you don't believe me, go ask my mum on her MammaLalla blog - she had years of trying to get me to not step out of my clothes, leave wet towels on the bed and simply rummage through my wardrobe as if it was a big laundry bin. So that is how I know Spring is approaching, because in the Spring even us 'born untidies' have the urge to straighten things out.

Drawers have always been my downfall. I can never see what are in the stacks of folded clothing, and as a result my impatience gets the better of me and I mess up the folded items. So this time I thought I need a different solution. I did a bit of 'folding clothes' research again, and decided that side-by-side stacking of all my tops and jumpers (the ones that don't need hanging) is the solution. Unfortunately I forgot (on purpose) to take a 'before' shot. But here you can see how I've folded and lined up my 'tops' drawer. And yes, I would like to point out that if I was Obsessive, I would arrange things by colour - but I'm too much of a realist, and know that that system won't last long.

But I didn't stop there, I continued until all the drawers that belong to me were sorted out... including my underwear drawers. There is however no way that I am going to post photos of my nickers drawer on a blog, but I will show you a peek of how I've stacked my bra's in an IKEA wardrobe organising box (yes, I wear flesh coloured bras when the occasion arises and that is a 'shock absorber' at the front, now lets move on please).
Phew, so after all that folding, I have become very familiar with various folding techniques. Coincidentally, Ivy from Little Ivy Cakes left me a comment asking about folding socks. So for all you Spring organisers, and for Ivy, I will be posting at the weekend about different folding techniques (not just t-shirt) for drawer and wardrobe organisation, including socks, trousers, underwear etc. All of that just in time for a bit of early Spring Cleaning.

Have a lovely week!

A note on perfection

Many of the posts featured on this blog are about doing household chores the correct, or so to say perfect way. My intention is not to make readers feel that the way they are running their households are wrong. So if making the bed, or ironing shirts in a certain way doesn't fit your lifestyle, do not feel guilty about it. But by learning the correct way of doing things it might just come in handy for those times when special guests are staying, or when you need to iron that shirt perfectly for a job interview. So enjoy the learning, but skip the guilt and LOVE your homes. x

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