How to Properly Store Your Winter Clothes
The frost of winter is steadily fading and slowly we begin to reclaim the outdoors. Birdsongs will soon greet you in the morning if they don’t already, and that heavy coat you’ve donned the last several months will need to be retired until next winter.
It’s time to rerack, reshelve, and store away your winter clothes for the warmer months. However, we suggest you don’t take this task lightly. There are ways to optimize your storage for clothes so they are safe, clean, and perfectly ready for you next time you see snow begin to fall.
We’ve already outlined our clever clothes storage ideas for stashing your regularly worn clothes around your home, but what do you do with your out-of-season clothing? We’ve got tips for storing winter clothing, including how to store clothes in a storage unit, so you’re free from the hassle of working around your winter clothes all summer.
As professionals in the industry, we’ve danced this dance before, so we are confident that we can support you with the task of storing clothes in a way that you find intuitive, helpful, and easy. We can even help you find additional storage space at our self storage locations!
Storing Winter Clothing Like a Professional
As with any project, it’s easier if we break down the process into smaller, more digestible tasks. So let’s start at the beginning, by taking inventory.
1. Inventory Your Winter Clothing First
The first step in taking inventory of your winter wardrobe is to sort through all the items. Begin by creating two piles: “keep” and “donate/discard.”
Keep any items that are still in good condition and that you expect to use again next winter. (If you didn’t use them this winter, that’s a pretty good hint of how useful they’ll be later.) Items that you’ll want to consider for these piles are your coats, sweaters, scarves, hats, long socks, gloves or mittens, and thermal attire.
If you’ve gone a full winter without using a certain item, place it in the “donate/discard” pile. If you’ve gone more than two, then we encourage this even more. Holding onto things you don’t need just takes up unnecessary space in your home and could better serve someone else.
2. Donate and Sell Excess Seasonal Clothing
Now that you know what you’re certain you will keep and use, it’s time to remove the rest. Where possible, donate and sell. The fewer items that need to go in the trash, the better. That said, don’t try selling thermal leggings with large holes in them or jackets where the pockets have torn open.
If you aren’t certain how useful something like that would be for others, donate all of it and let the professionals decide if it’s an item worth keeping or repairing for distribution. Your job is just to get all of it out of the house and into the hands of others.
3. Clean Your Clothing—and Don’t Cut Corners
Storing winter clothing is pointless if you aren’t going to take the steps needed to take care of your belongings before putting them away. If you take the quick and easy way of storing clothes, you risk stuffing a bunch of damp or bunched-up items together, potentially ruining them or damaging their longevity.
To keep your winter clothes in tiptop shape, cleaning them is a must. Start by turning garments inside out before laundering them in cold water with a mild detergent. This helps prevent colors from fading and wool fabrics from shrinking or stretching due to heat exposure.
When possible, try to avoid tumble drying as the heat could damage delicate fibers and cause shrinkage. Instead, opt for air drying, which is gentler on fabrics while preserving their shape and color better over time. Once you are absolutely certain that everything you intend to store is completely dry, then you can move into the folding and packing stage.
4. Folding and Packing Tricks for Clothing Storage
When it comes to long-term storage, hanging and folding techniques are key. There are a variety of different options that can be used for long-term storage, including hanging, rolling, interlocking, and bundle wrapping.
Looking to save square footage without sacrificing the tidiness of your clothes? You can hang your clothing in storage with the help of wardrobe boxes. With this option, you won’t have to worry about how to fold items that wrinkle easily, and you can organize and store similar clothes together in boxes.
Rolling is a popular method for organizing and storing thicker clothing items, like sweaters and ski pants. This technique involves tightly rolling the item in order to reduce bulkiness and placing it into a box or similar container.
Interlocking folds are ideal for organizing thin fabric items like long-sleeve shirts or thermal underwear. This method involves overlapping two edges of the fabric before folding them up into a neat stack, which can be placed horizontally or vertically.
Last on our list of clothes storage ideas is the bundle wrap. To bundle wrap, start by folding your clothes into neat squares. Next, secure each clothing item with an elastic band. This will help keep everything together once it’s put away in the storage unit. Then wrap each item securely in tissue paper or bubble wrap before placing it inside a plastic bag or box for protection against moisture and dust. Finally, label each bundle so you can quickly see what’s inside without having to take out all the bundles from storage.
5. Research Your Clothing Storage Options
Storage solutions, and even storage units, are not all created equal. Storing winter clothing requires you to do some legwork on what you need to preserve your wardrobe, so it is important to make sure you research your options before committing. For those looking to store winter clothing in self storage to get it out of their homes during the offseason, there are some differences to consider between storage unit options.
How Do You Store Winter Clothes in a Storage Unit?
You’ll want to follow the same general guidelines we mentioned regardless of if you’re storing your winter clothes at home or in a storage unit. If you opt for a storage unit, you’ll additionally want to consider options for climate-controlled storage, and will likely have some choices available when it comes to storage unit size.
Climate control can be an important factor when selecting a storage unit, depending on what you are storing. In the case of winter apparel, climate control creates a stable temperature environment for your clothes to stay in around the clock and will ultimately help in the long-term preservation of your belongings. With temperature regulation available to buffer your clothing from extreme heat or quick changes in temperature, it can certainly be a big help.
You should also consider the size of the storage unit based on the number and size of items you need to store. Fortunately, you can find a variety of storage unit sizes for you to choose from. Generally, you’ll want to select the smallest unit that will accommodate all your items while still leaving enough space for air circulation and a clear center aisle for accessing everything in your storage space.
Lastly, don’t forget about safety measures when choosing a storage facility. Prestige has perimeter fencing, electronic lights, and more for your peace of mind.
Prestige Storage: Year-Round Storage for All Your Clothes
At Prestige, you trust us to stay on top of the storage game. With an emphasis on our customer service savviness and continual improvement, we ensure your storage needs remain our top priority regardless of what you’re storing.
Winter is on its way out, and we have 36 different locations where you can trust us to take care of your belongings. Right now, it just comes down to this: Which one is closest to you, and how can you get in touch?
Don’t worry—we’ll make that easy, too. You can find a storage location perfect for you right here and contact one of our customer representatives with any questions you may have, including about how to store clothes in a storage unit!