Storing winter clothes isn’t something everyone has to do, but it’s a major lifestyle problem when you have limited space and no idea how to do it. If you live in Florida and your winter clothes consist of a lightweight sweater and dresses with sleeves, you’re not going to need winter clothes storage advice.
Here in Long Island, New York, winter is a real thing. You have heavy coats, boots, pants, and other gear that takes up valuable storage space in the closets of everyone in your family. When the weather changes and becomes warm enough to go outside without a coat, you find yourself asking people “How do you store clothes in the summer?”
If you want to know where to put your winter clothes, here are some great storage ideas that save space, time, and keep your clothes from becoming damaged.
Wash Your Clothes First
It might not sound much like storage advice, but it’s good advice. Before you store anything for an entire season, you must wash it. Even if it’s something you don’t believe you need to wash often such as a scarf or heavy coat, wash it.
Everything you store for the winter must be clean, fresh, and ready for the long haul in a box, closet, or storage container. Any lingering smells, stains, or other issues with a dirty item can cause issues. Smells from one little scarf can seep into everything it’s stored with. One little stain might set so well over the course of the rest of the year it won’t come clean when you finally unpack. If that’s not enough to convince you to wash it all before you store it, imagine taking it all out for the winter only to realize you have a lot of laundry to do. Is that what you need to hear to encourage you to wash your winter wear prior to storing it?
Do Not Use Mothballs
First of all, they smell terrible. You don’t want to walk around next winter smelling like a mothball, and the scent is very obvious. Don’t think you can get rid of that or mask it. People will know.
Secondly, mothballs are said to be made of questionable materials not good for your health or the health of the environment. This PDF indicates that 4000 children a year require medical attention due to mothball exposure.
If you want to store winter clothes and keep them free of bugs and you aren’t using vacuum bags, there are many natural remedies that you can use. Try soaking a cotton ball with thyme, lavender, cinnamon, cloves or peppermint essential oil and place it into a cloth sachet or muslin bag.
Essential oils are so much safer for your family, they’ll keep the bugs away and your clothes will smell better too! Bugs aren’t a problem with all storage options, but mothballs are a problem in general.
Vacuum Bags Save Space
They may go by many different names, such as: “vacuum pack bags”, “space bags”, “space savers”, “spacemakers”, “vacuum compression bags” and “vacuum sealed bags” but they all do the same thing. Save Space! They’re easy to use when you have very little room.
It’s not always easy to store big coats and other winter gear during the summer since it takes up so much space, but they take up virtually none when you place it in a storage bag that vacuum seals. You can make even the largest bag of coats small enough to fit into a drawer without worrying that anything bad will happen to it in the meantime. Just fold your clothes, put them in the vacuum bag, close the ziplock seal and suck all of the air out! It’s so easy. I absolutely love these things.
Use Storage Containers
If you don’t have much storage space but you don’t want to store your winter weather wear in the attic, storage containers that sit flat on the floor are always a great idea. Fill them with everyone’s jackets, boots, and heavy winter accessories and stack them in an empty storage closet, on a shelf in the garage or even under the bed. They take up far less room this way, but they’re also far less likely to become damaged by the elements.
Label The Containers Or Bags
The idea behind storing your clothes for the summer months is to save room in your house. Since you are going through all of your winter clothes and taking the time to put them in bags or containers, why not organize them? It will save you lots of agony when you need to unpack them again in the fall or winter. For the boxes, you can simply put a label on the outside of the box stating what’s inside. The bags are see through, so you can place a label on the inside of the bag before you seal it up… facing out of course!
Fold Clothes That You Shouldn’t Hang
If you have additional closet space, remember not to hang your sweaters. It’s nice to have an empty closet in a spare room or your home office, but don’t let that trick you into thinking you can store your sweaters in there by hanging them for the long spring and summer season. . The hanging position stretches the fabric, and it can ruin the fit of your beautiful winter sweaters. They can absolutely be placed in a spare closet around the house, but remember to fold them and place them neatly on shelves rather than hang them.
It’s not difficult to store your winter clothes, but these tips might make it a little less stressful. Every year you wonder if there is a better way to handle your winter storage issues, and this year you have more options than ever before.