The holiday season is fast approaching, and you might need to tackle the
linen closet if you’re as hesitant to have your guests see your clean laundry
as you are to have them see your dirty laundry. Before your linens go through
another season piled high and stuffed tight, take a day to clear out the old,
treat yourself to some new, and transform your linen closet from scary to
Professional Organizer Kelly Pratt gives tips for getting your linen closet in
Out with the Old!
The first steps in creating a functional and appealing linen closet are to—
Purge! Get rid of towels, washcloths, bed and table linens that have seen
better days. That means if anything is stained, has tears or holes or is just
generally ratty, it gets tossed or repurposed. I’m a firm believer that people
should not towel off with the same grungy towel you might use to dry your
Repurpose! Old towels can be cut to smaller sizes and used for car towels,
cleaning rags, padding for glassware, flag football flags (just kidding J). The
same goes for old sheets and table cloths, but both of these items are great
for drop cloths, dress-ups, making forts or keeping in the back of your car to
cover the carpet if you’re transporting something messy.
Remove! If your linen closet is a catch-all for not only linens but also
hardware, first-aid, crafts, etc., determine what absolutely MUST stay, and
what could possibly be stored elsewhere. If your linen closet is stuffed, or if
you don’t have a linen closet at all, alternative storage areas can create
space. Hang table cloths. Store sheets in a bin under the bed they fit. Store
extra towels and washcloths under the vanity or in a basket in the bathroom.
If your closet is so full that you can’t take something out without five more
things falling out with it, your closet will always be a mess. Focus on
In with the New!
Fortunately, linens are not super expensive, so even if you have to clear out
the bulk of your closet, you can start replacing items without spending a
small fortune. Remember, the bulk of what is stored in the linen closet is
rarely used, so if you have about two to three towels per person in your
family and two sheet sets per bed, you’re likely good to go.
To keep your closet functioning well and looking stellar, use these ticks of
Linen closets are one place where aesthetics also lend to functionality. In
order to access your linens, they must be folded or rolled, which, of course,
looks nicer than closets just stuffed with unfolded towels and blankets.
Storing sheet sets inside a pillow case not only keeps the set together but
also lassoes those pesky fitted sheets.
Store all items in a table linen set together. If you have a tablecloth and
matching napkins and wish to hang your tablecloths, put the napkins in a
zippered lingerie bag and clip to the hanger with skirt clips.
Store holiday linens with the appropriate holiday decorations rather than in
the linen closet.
Use dryer sheets or sachets in your linen closet to keep linens smelling fresh.
Label shelves or containers, particularly because the linen closet is an area
with multiple users.
Make sure like items are stored together.