Seasonal Clothing Storage 101

garment bagsA great way to keep your closets clutter-free is to store your out of season clothing elsewhere.  That means, during the winter your summer clothes go into storage and vice versa during the summer.  Don’t worry if you do not have a garage, there are plenty of places to find storage around the home – you just need to know where to look for it!  When it comes to managing clutter, especially when it comes to clothing, I absolutely treasure garment bags, which come in various styles.  Some garment bags hang over the closet rod to keep long coats and dresses stored, while others are designed for packing up sweaters and keeping them under the bed.

Ideally (if you have a garage) you should keep a garment rack in the garage for hanging items.  That way, all you have to do is transfer the hanging clothes to the garment rack and zip them up in some sort of protective storage bag.  You’ll want that bag to have good strong seams, somewhat rigid to maintain shape, and be transparent so you can see through to what’s inside.  Never go the easy route and use garbage bags, folks, you’ll regret it!  If you do not have a garage for storing seasonal clothes, you will have to be a little more creative.  But it is not difficult – utilize space under the bed, under the sofa, in a hall closet, etc.

Space Bags and other containers which use a vacuum to suck out the air are a dream come true for people with limited storage space.  Use those to hold your sundresses and tanks in the winter and your sweaters and scarves in the summer.  No matter how you go about it, you are sure to find that storing seasonal clothes is the key to having an organized and de-cluttered closet!

Garment Protectors for Formal Wear

If you use your garment rack for out of season clothes storage or for storing special occasion clothes, you want to make sure that you are protecting those clothes the right way.  The most common threats to stored clothes are insects and moisture.  Both of these disasters can be avoided by keeping stored clothes covered in proper garment storage bags.  This dress and suit protector garment bag

dress and suit protector garment bag

dress and suit protector garment bag

is perfect for that job!  Garment storage bags should feature a zipper to fully close the bag for a good seal, ensuring water and bugs stay out!  I like this particular garment bag because it has one clear side that is made of PEVA , which is also an eco friendly material, but the best thing about it is that it allows you to see what is stored in each bag.  That way you don’t have to open up endless garment bags to find the right suit or formal dress you are looking for.  On the other side of this garment bag there is a fabric backing which serves two purposes.  First, it allows for some airflow to counteract the plastic front.  And secondly, it can provide valuable protection from sun damage.  A properly designed garment bag allows you to save suits, formal wear for years, keeping them safe from water, insects and sun damage.  If you have an open style garment rack in your home, a garment cover is a must have for those special clothes that you want to make last!
Here are some tips for buying a garment bag:
•    Look for a fully closed model.  Sometimes these are vinyl, sometimes canvas, polyester and even hard plastic clothes storage boxes are a great choice when you don’t have space on the closet rod.
•    Check to see how many hangers it can accommodate – some only hold one garment, great for formals, while others hold up to eight garments in one bag, which is a better choice for suits and business attire.

Saving Precious Space with Sweater Bags

Whether you live in a studio apartment or a mansion, the problem of efficient and handy storage is all too familiar, especially if you have twenty aunties giving you twenty reindeer sweaters any given Christmas.

Of course, you don’t want to hurt their feelings by donating these treasures to the community scarecrow clothing drive; you may also want to keep those on hand for that Antarctic expedition where you were planning to attire underprivileged penguins. At the same time, you may have indulged more than a few times by getting some fancy cashmere cardigans, and now mold, dust and moths take whimsically ominous shapes in your increasingly frequent nightmares.

Clear Vinyl Sweater Bag

Clear Vinyl Sweater Bag

Fortunately, containing hideous knitwear and protecting your cherished designer garbs is equally convenient with the help of zippered garment bags.  They come in all shapes and sizes, offering a simple yet effective answer to an otherwise frustrating task. Come to think of it, those baby blankets, onesies, small stuffed toys and other infant items that are waiting to be handed down to a worthy successor can also use a safe and easy storage solution.

My personal pick is this set of 6 clear vinyl sweater bags from Stacks and Stacks. Transparent design lets you quickly tell the difference between your all-time favorite apparel and the stuff you picture maybe using one day down the road. Heavy duty vinyl makes sure that no matter how heavily armed the dust mites may be, they’re not getting through. Self-correcting zippers forgive an occasional lapse in judgment, like trying to fit a cruise ship into a garment bag.

If you let your imagination run rampant, you may find a gazillion other uses for these storage champions. I, for one, inflate a myriad of little balloons and trap them in these bags in colorful arrangements. That serves no purpose whatsoever, but a girl needs a hobby.