Have you discovered the secret of seasonal storage to help make your spaces feel less cluttered? Changing out and storing away clothing and linens by season can make your living spaces and closets more functional and feel more spacious for your entire household.
For minimum effort and maximum impact, start with your linens. Change out your heavy down comforters and flannel sheets for crisp cotton and a bright bedspread and cotton blanket. When you’re ready to store the winter linens, pack them away into a zippered storage cube or space bag to protect them from dust, water, and insects. Vacuum storage systems such as Spacebags brand storage bags act like magic to minimize the space these items will take on your shelves, or turn them into compact bundles you can stow away in a storage tote for double the protection and easy access when it’s time to switch them out again in the fall.
Once you’re done with the bedrooms – consider a similar swap in other living areas. Do you have throw blankets and pillows in the living room or family room that make it feel like winter? Freshen up those rooms by swapping out functional items with lighter weight fabrics in soft or bright colors for an instant room refresh. To take it a step further, what about changing out towels in the bathrooms? If you have a neutral décor consider adding a pop of bright green, white, or yellow to welcome spring.
The next project is more time consuming, but ultimately rewarding – tackle the closet. If you’re already in the habit of swapping your clothes in a winter/fall and spring/summer rotation then it’s time to bring out your spring clothes. If you aren’t in this habit yet, it’s a great time to start. If you don’t live in a climate where you can wear the same clothes year-round why have them take up space in your closet in the off season? An added bonus – switching out your clothes keeps you regularly evaluating wear and tear and whether to hang on to clothes season after season or not. Here’s how to get started:
Find all the fall and winter clothes that you’re ready to put away. Don’t forget to check the laundry room, hall closets, and even your gym bag; part of the pleasure in this activity is making it a one-time clean sweep.
– Check items for wear, damage, and stains.
– If it’s worn out – get rid of it. Can it be cut up for dust rags?
– If you find a tear or missing button, repair it now so the garment is ready to wear next fall.
– If it’s stained, launder it or take it to the dry cleaner as soon as possible, don’t put it off and put the item back into your closet.
– Reality check – did you wear this item one or more times this season? Does it fit you? If either answer is no, you should probably donate it. If you can’t bear to get rid of it now, pin a note to the garment that says “I didn’t wear this 2 years in a row, time to donate!” and store it. Remove the note when you do wear the garment out of the house…if the note is still there this time next year? Donate it.
– Do the same thing with your footwear. Be honest!
– Pack away the out of season clothes and shoes in a storage tote, zippered wardrobe, or vacuum seal bags that can be stored in the attic, guest room closet, laundry room, or even the back of your current closet if necessary.
Now, for the clothes you will wear in the coming months:
– If this is the first season swap for you – inspect the clothes you’re keeping out for spring and summer and deal with any wear, tear, broken zippers, stains, etc. so that you know everything in your closet and dressers is ready to put on.
– As you unpack or inspect clothes, determine if anything needs professional cleaning or pressing and take it to the dry cleaner right away so you can return it to your closet.
– Does anything need alterations since last year to make it current? Hems up or down? Waistlines taken in? Get those garments to a tailor or make the changes yourself if you have those skills. Nothing adds confidence like clothes that fit you perfectly.
– Do you dislike any of these clothes? Replace them or get rid of them.
– Lastly, audit your closet to see if you need to make any changes
– Are you missing any staples in your shoe or garment options? Make a list and hit the Spring sales or consignment shops – but try to stick to your list, remember the goal is a trim and tidy closet.
– Do you have unnecessary duplicates? Will you really wear four pink blouses? If you love them all, pack a couple back into storage to rotate into use next year. If they’re all a similar style or very trendy, consider donating one or two to make more room in your closet.
If you need to repeat the process for other members of your household, tackle their closets too. Then sit back and say “Welcome Spring!”