Since moving from our small space into a larger home, I’ve finally been able to give some attention to the ever growing pile of baby items we’ve accumulated. Instead of randomly packing things up as they’re no longer useful, I pulled everything out and diligently sorted in a useful way. I’m certainly no expert in this area, but this is what I’ve found to be the most useful way to organize baby clothes and other items.
How to Organize Baby Clothes and Other Items
1. Useful Containers
Figure out what your purpose is in storing the clothes. Are you saving the items for future use in your own family? Will you be selling them at a consignment or yard sale soon?
If your time-frame for selling or giving away the baby items is short, then something inexpensive (or free) like cardboard boxes should work well. If however, you’ll be storing the clothes for a longer period of time, I’d highly recommend investing in plastic storage bins; preferably the same type or style. The Spring Cleaning season is a great time stock up on these since the price is usually discounted heavily!
2. Categorize Appropriately
Depending on our needs and lifestyles, categorizing baby clothes and other items will be different for everyone. However, if you need a starting point, these are the categories I used for each storage bin:
- Clothes: 0-9 months
- Clothes: 12 months
- Clothes: 18 months
- Clothes: 24 months
- Miscellaneous Clothing Items: Shoes, socks, hats, accessories, gloves, specialty items (like Christmas and Halloween outfits)
- Newborn Items: blankets, bibs, swaddlers, pump, bottles, etc.
Notice that I didn’t put winter clothes, hats, gloves or specialty items like Christmas or Halloween outfits in the corresponding clothes bin. It seems that if those items are needed in the future, you shouldn’t have to hunt through several clothes bins to find what your looking for. Two years down the road you probably won’t remember if the outfit was 18 months or 24 months. And depending on the date the new child was born, they may be wearing one size but could certainly fit in a different size for this one time specialty outfit.
That brings me to another point. All of the clothing boxes contain both summer and winter outfits. If you live in an area of the country with 4 very distinct seasons, there’s a great chance that the new baby will be wearing both summer and winter clothes while they’re in one size. Also, if you do need something in the future, it’s very useful to be able to see the entire wardrobe in once glance to ensure you don’t buy something you already have.
3. Store Smart
Make sure that you have adequate storage space to keep all of the baby clothes. There comes a time that it’s not useful or practical to keep everything hidden away in your attic or garage. For example, if you live in 740 square feet, you probably don’t want to use 50 square feet storing old clothes that you could sell now and repurchase when needed later on. Also, if you have an only child who’s 15, you probably don’t have much of a need to store all of heir baby clothes any longer (perhaps just a couple pieces if you’re sentimental!).
If you’re in the Spring Cleaning mood this weekend, consider organizing all the baby clothes piled away. Sell or give away what you don’t need and store the rest in a useful, practical way!
I don’t have all the answers when it comes to storing baby clothes. In fact you may have a better way! If so, please share your tips in the comments.