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Inside: How to fold baby clothes – because those adorable little pieces present unique folding challenges! Learn the easiest method for folding baby clothes that keeps drawers neat and organized, along with an additional method to consider based on your unique space and time constraints.
Our second baby girl arrived a few months ago, with three boys in between the girls. I stopped hanging onto girl clothes after we found out our fourth was a boy.
Thankfully, we were given several bags of hand-me-down baby clothes from friends. As I washed and folded all those baby clothes (I must be an expert at folding clothes by now!), I filed them neatly into a single dresser drawer, the same dresser we used with our first daughter.
That same dresser now holds FOUR kids’ clothes. Yes, I said four.
Five drawers. Four kids.
To think that dresser used to be stuffed to the brim with just ONE child’s baby clothes!
There is no way we could fit our big family into such small spaces now (at least not in any kind of organized fashion) without decluttering our clothes first. But the real secret to keeping all those clothes neat and organized is the way I fold them.
I used get so frustrated when my drawers would be disorganized after a day or two. Baby clothes can be especially tricky because as adorable as they are, those onesies and sleepers are SO tiny with zippers and creases that present unique folding challenges.
Then I learned this new method, and? No more messy drawers!
So if you’re wondering how to organize baby clothes so that they actually STAY organized, you’re gonna want to learn this folding technique. Because once you learn how to fold baby clothes this way? Those clothes will stay SO organized, you’ll never want to go back.
Folding Baby Clothes Before the Marie Kondo Folding Method
I used to fold baby clothes using a more traditional method like in the photo above, and I thought about teaching you that method in addition to the one I currently use…but that would be doing you a disservice.
Marie Kondo did such a good thing for the world when she enlightened us all by teaching us the filing method for folding clothes.
I’ve written about the KonMari folding method before, but I realized I wrote mostly about why you should use this method, not necessarily how to fold clothes this way.
Since drawers with neatly folded clothes makes my heart unusually happy, I’m going to walk you through the easiest way to fold baby clothes. I’ll also offer you an even easier alternative for organizing baby clothes that I’d seriously consider if I had the space simply given the time it takes to fold clothes (for 7 people).
How to Fold Baby Clothes Using the KonMari Folding Method
Since discovering the KonMari folding method, I’ve never looked back. The Marie Kondo folding method is a no brainer for people living in small spaces, but really, anyone can benefit from it!
The idea is to “file” your clothes, so that you can see each piece. You no longer need to sort through a stack, which often leads to messy drawers no matter how careful you are.
While the traditional method might feel easier right now because it’s a habit, the way you naturally fold without thinking, I guarantee that the KonMari method is easier – well 99% anyway. You just need practice.
Since folding baby clothes the KonMari Way is a little more complicated than folding other clothes using the same filing method, I’ll walk you through the three most complicated pieces.
While it may take a little practice at first, after you master these three pieces, folding baby clothes will be ridiculously fast and easy! (and your now organized drawers will look like this…so pretty)
How to Fold Long-Sleeved Baby Onesies
Wondering how to fold onesies? Long-sleeved onesies are the most challenging, so I’ll teach you how to fold onesies with the long-sleeved version.
First, fold the onesie in half vertically, sleeve to sleeve. Next, fold the sleeves back in, on top of the body of the onesie.
Finally, fold the onesie in half horizontally, then again. I believe Marie Kondo recommends thirds, but I’ve found that folding baby clothes in fourths generally works better.
The onesies can now be filed in your dresser drawers.
How to Fold Baby Sleepers
Just like the onesie, fold the sleeper in half vertically. Fold the sleeves in, on top of the main body of the sleeper.
Next, fold the legs up to the collar of the sleepers, then in half again. If they are bulky, fleece sleepers, you can always use thirds instead of fourths, or alternatively, roll them, instead of folding.
You can file them in drawers similarly to the folded sleepers.
How to Fold Baby Pants and Shorts
Fold the pants in half, leg to leg. Shorts can be folded in half, and pants in fourths.
You can experiment with thirds versus fourths for the majority of baby clothes.
Whatever dimensions work best for your drawer height and getting the piece to “stand up” on its own, regardless of how many clothes are in the drawer with it, is the winner.
A No Fold Method for Organizing Baby Clothes
In an ideal world, I would have a walk-in closet in each room with multiple shelves at different levels.
If I had a closet like that, I would almost definitely choose a no-fold method for organizing baby clothes, simply to save time.
As much as I adore a drawer with neatly folded clothes, every minute is precious these days and folding baby clothes is not something I’d choose to spend my time on if I didn’t have to.
If you’re like me and could use those extra minutes, try this no fold laundry system for baby clothes instead of the Konmari Method.
If you have a closet with shelves (I’m jealous!), you can use 4-6 separate bins, one for each of the following:
- Socks & Shoes
- Hair Accessories
This method works better if you have a smaller capsule wardrobe (babies don’t need as much as you think!), where the majority of items mix and match easily. Otherwise, you could waste time picking out a matching outfit.
Simply wash and dry your baby clothes in a single load. Carry the laundry basket directly to the closet and sort into bins.
And voila! You’re done.
Should You Fold Baby Dresses and Jackets?
It’s best to hang baby dresses and jackets/sweatshirts if you have a closet and space to do so. You will need hangers that are sized for baby clothes (like these hangers).
Otherwise, good luck fitting those tiny pieces onto adult-sized hangers. I’ve tried it, and trust me – it’s not gonna happen.
If you’re debating in general whether or not to hang all your baby clothes, I generally don’t recommend hanging them. I find it faster and easier to fold baby clothes instead of hang them.
However, if you have a closet conducive to hanging baby clothes and you want avoid adding another piece of furniture to a smaller sized nursery, hanging all your baby clothes is a valid option. I’m all for keeping the nursery more open.
A better option if you want to avoid a dresser and save time is the no fold method described above.
How to Organize Baby Accessories in Drawers
If you plan on keeping baby socks, shoes, headbands, and hats in drawers, you’re going to want to keep them organized as well. To keep them all separated neatly in drawers with like items together, consider using shallow bins, one per type of item.
Although shoe boxes can work (and hey, they’re frugal!), they are often too tall for a traditional dresser drawer. A drawer organizers like these are the perfect size for most dressers.
If you keep the rest of your baby clothes arranged in rows by type, you should have room for accessories as well.
Folding Baby Clothes Finally Demystified
If I’ve done my job properly, you now know how to fold baby clothes using the Konmari folding method!
If you’re an organizing junkie like myself who just loves to learn better ways to keep things neat and tidy, I hope I satisfied your thirst for more tools in your organization “toolbelt”. (I geeked out, too.)
And if you just wanted to know how to organize your baby clothes so you could find a matching outfit for once? I know that once you arrange those nicely folded baby clothes in drawers, it will take you no time at all to grab a coordinating outfit for your baby.
Just remember that the real secret to organization is owning less to begin with.
That way, you won’t need to spend all your time organizing and reorganizing all those baby clothes, as adorable as they may be.
Keep fewer baby clothes, give the rest to someone who truly needs them, and spend more time with your baby.
But that’s just one opinion from a mom of 5.