Have you ever bought a pair of sweatpants for your children’s CLOTHES (because… the knees are *still* in holes!), only to discover a few months later that you already had some, but they were too tight?

Or do you have trouble closing the drawers of your children’s dressers because the amount of baby girl dresses exceeds the capacity of the drawer? But in the rush of the moment, it’s easier to lean very hard on it to close the drawer than to sort…

Organizing children’s clothes can be a real headache. First, because they grow so fast, we are talking about a turnover that can quickly stun us. Then because when you live in Quebec, you ride a lot of seasons at the same time. That equates to a wide variety of clothes that need to stay close.

Why organize children’s clothes?

  • To have a clear inventory of everything available to us. By organizing the clothes, we reduce the money wasted on buying back what we have at home but which we no longer know we have.
  • To feel more serene by reducing the chaos of drawers
  • To facilitate storage
  • To promote children’s independence

I could write an entire book on organizing clothes, but I’m giving you four of my best secrets as a professional organizer (and a mom of three!) to give you some breathing room!

1- Seasonal sorting

Once a season, or at least twice a year, I recommend that you sort through the drawers and wardrobe of each child.

We sort:

  • What no longer does (we give, or we sell)
  • What we don’t use or no longer use (even if it still hurts, even if we find it so beautiful, even if our eldest was so cute when he wore it but the youngest doesn’t want to know anything. Repeat after me: We let go to take. (we give or we sell)
  • What works but is no longer adequate for the season (we store it in a bin)
  • What is too stained or damaged to wear (recycle or throw away)

I recommend doing this not just before the season starts but rather after the overlapping period of the current two seasons is over. It reduces the unavoidable back and forth works that would otherwise be required.

2 – A too-small clothes bin (often at the top of the wardrobe)

To facilitate the process, we want the tray to be accessible in a maximum of three steps. In the majority of cases, that means opening the door to the wardrobe (which is in the same room!), sliding the bin or basket in, and putting the garment down. But for other room types, it might be a basket in the corner with a lid.

Notice that as soon as we exceed the rule of three the clothes tend to accumulate. They accumulate on surfaces or remain in drawers. They are thrown to the ground in desperation too sometimes! A small bin and you’re done, as long as you respect the rule of three! A bin with a lid in a closet could derail the whole thing because we’re suddenly four steps away – try that and let me know!

3 – Drawer sub-dividers

Either with SKUBB drawer dividers from IKEA or with own box bottoms (shoe boxes are excellent here), creating sub-divisions allows, among other things,

  • To make sure things stay in place by opening and closing drawers with the desperate force of a four-year-old at the best of his four
  • Once again delimit the space dedicated to each type of item (as we did with the toys last week) so as not to end up with dozens of t-shirts
  • Make it easier for children to find their panties, stockings, and other small items that would hide more easily without this accessory

Thanks to the sub-divisors, we see very quickly when sorting is necessary, as soon as one of the sub-divisor’s overflows!

As for the drawers, we can’t wait for clothes to be rolled up to allow children to better see what’s available to them in the drawer. A neatly folded pile of t-shirts is so quickly destroyed when a child wants what’s underneath the pile!

4 – Hooks for clothes that are neither dirty nor clean.

The logic goes as follows:

We do a lot, a lot of washing in a week.

Some children like to change clothes a lot, a lot in one day.

These children have the curious talent of depositing slightly worn but not yet dirty clothes in the washing basket. Or just on the ground.

A parent, wanting (to do well) to regain control of a messy room will take the said clothes lying around on the floor and put them in the basket.

Except that…


And if we don’t bypass this unfortunate situation, well, the cycle becomes even heavier, and is endless:

So, we do a lot, a lot, a lot of washing

And so on.

Sometimes it just might mean more washing CHILDREN’S CLOTHES. But other times it will mean that a parent will buy even more clothes thinking that their child is missing some…

So, to our rescue, neither dirty nor clean clothes hooks. On the one hand, we may not want those previously worn clothes returned to the drawer with the clean clothes. And on the other hand, you definitely don’t want to wash them again. Hooks offer a perfect solution:

  • Easier than folding up and storing in the drawer
  • If the hook(s) are well placed, possibly easier than putting them in the wash basket
  • Easier than accessing clean clothes in the drawer when it’s time to get dressed again.

Psst! It’s a great solution for adults too!

So which solution are you going to start with?    

Does your challenge require a tailor-made solution to regain control of the tornado of clothes like pumpkin pajamas you are facing in your children’s room? A virtual consultation can result in a significant saving of time and money! I could write an entire book on organizing clothes. But I’m giving you four of my best secrets. As a professional organizer (and a mom of three!) to give you some breathing room!

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