SKILL LEVEL 1
by Dayna Del Val
Linen closets have the potential for beautiful order or absolute disarray, depending on how you handle them. If you've never mastered the art of folding a queen-sized fitted sheet, for example, your linen closet might look more like a free-for-all than a pristine, organized series of linens nestled on shelves and in containers. Follow these tips to transform your linen closet so it's well stocked, accessible and organized.
Freelance writer Dayna Del Val has a little linen closet, but she takes great pride in having it extremely organized — one of the few spaces in her home in which she has managed to do that.
1 Skill level
1 out of 5
Empty everything from your linen closet. Determine what you're keeping, what you can give away and what you should simply throw out. Put the give-away things in a box and throw out the throw-out things.
Once the closet is empty, wipe the shelves with a damp sponge to remove accumulated dust. If you want, give the closet a fresh coat of low-odor paint or cover shelves with drawer liners.
If the shelves are adjustable, space them at a workable distance to suit your needs.
If shelves are permanent, place shelving units, dividers and other containers on them, or hang them underneath.
Nothing is easy to find in the dark, so if you don’t have good lighting, consider adding sticky-backed cordless LED lights (such as Stick N Click or Rite Lite) under each shelf. Their LED bulbs shed light on your newly organized shelves.
Label the shelves if it helps keep the space organized, especially if other household members put away linens.
For additional organization, check out our project Install a Closet Organizer.
Tuck the folded fitted sheet and pillow cases inside the fold of the top sheet to make an easy package for putting away and taking out. You could also tie each set with a ribbon to keep it together. Sort by bedroom, color, size, or season and then stack sheets sets flat. Set them on their shelf with the folded edge facing out.
Store blankets, seasonal comforters and extra pillows in large zippered plastic bags and keep them on the bottom or top shelf where they're out of the way of everyday items.
How you organize your towels depends on how you run your bathroom.
Regardless of how you organize them, each towel in a stack should have the folded side facing out and the loose ends facing the same way to keep the pile stable and tidy. Don’t overstack towels on closet shelves; it is better to have multiple short piles to avoid tipping.
Be sure to assess the state of your bath linens periodically and turn worn or ripped towels into rags.
Divide your table linens into tablecloths, table runners, placemats and napkins. You can further divide by season, style, or by the table where they are used.
Group napkins, which are the most apt to get dirty and wear out, by color or size. You might want to buy extra napkins for each design or set so that you're sure to have enough clean and in good shape each time you use them.
You can hang tablecloths and runners on the back of the closet door on padded hangers, or simply place a towel over the hanger before folding your linens over it to avoid creasing. An over-the-door towel rack also works well.
If you're short on space in the linen closet, you can easily store table linens in sideboards or a chest of drawers in the kitchen or dining room. Flat storage bins are the perfect place to keep holiday table linens. House them with your other holiday decorations.
To keep guest linens nice, consider storing them in a covered bin or basket under the guestroom bed instead of the linen closet. Stock it with summer and winter sheets, pillows, blankets and a few complete sets of towels. keep a portable basket with travel toiletries — you can quickly make up the guest space, and guests feel absolutely pampered in your home.
For when you have people over for a few hours, have handy a small container of pretty hand towels and scented soaps.
Some linen closets house extra family toiletries, first aid and sewing kits, cleaning supplies and a myriad of other household items. Having baskets or other containers can be so helpful — keep similar items together for easy grab-and-go.
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|Cordless led lights|
|Storage bin with lid, under-bed|