Nothing seems to pile up more than clothes. This is especially true when you have kids. An apartment’s limited storage space can become a significant challenge when dealing with your children’s clothing.
Here are some ways to make storing clothes easier without having to sacrifice a lot of living space.
Optimize closet space
People are generally pretty smart. They’re so smart that many have come up with some pretty straightforward, but ingenious ways to help you make the most of your closet space.
Those top shelves many closets have can be doubled with baskets or wire shelves that hang from the top shelf. And speaking of shelves, you can keep stacks of folded clothes and blankets from getting out of control with dividers.
For hanging clothes, you can effectively double the number of clothes hangers you can use with rod extenders that hook to your central hangar rod. Most rod extension kits have adjustable widths to fit many different sizes of closets.
Shoes can be stored in caddies that hang from the top of the inside of a closet door. Many of these can hold five to eight pairs of shoes. If you don’t have that many shoes, they can also store other items such as socks, rolled up belts, and other accessories.
Finally, most apartment closets have space above the door. Check with your landlord to see if you can install a shelf up there for additional out-of-the-way storage.
Use under-the-bed storage
For clothes that are going into seasonal storage, under-the-bed options could be the best way to go. Many stores offer low-profile plastic tubs—some with little wheels—that slide easily under most beds. They are perfect for storing clothes, blankets, and other items that are not immediately needed.
A fabric softener sheet placed in the tub will help clothes and blankets stay fresh should you need to use anything stored there sooner than planned.
This is also a great way to make use of unused suitcases if you don’t have ready access to low-profile plastic tubs.
An added bonus to utilizing under-the-bed storage is that if you have that space filled with plastic tubs, there’s less room for lost toys, overdue library books, and other childhood “treasures” to accumulate.
See what still fits and what doesn’t
Kids grow quickly. It seems, at times, like they’re growing right before your very eyes and those sneakers you just bought are getting ready to burst at the seams.
Every six months, determine what has been outgrown, and what can stay in rotation for longer. The best times for this would be when the winter and summer seasons approach and the wardrobe changes are more dramatic.
Unless you’re certain you can pass down certain clothes to younger siblings, accept that it’s time to get rid of clothes that no longer fit or simply aren’t being worn. Likewise, clothing that has excessive wear and tear can go as well.
You can conduct these clothing reviews alone or with your children—whichever seems to work best for you—so long as you succeed in getting rid of clothes that have outlived their usefulness.
Donate old clothes and blankets
After eliminating outgrown or unused clothes from your apartment, don’t just toss them out right away. If they’re clean, bag them up and bring them to a local charity or second-hand children’s clothing store. Many places will give you a receipt to use to claim the donation on your taxes. Others will pay you in cash or store credit.
New parents on a tight budget can make use of your cast-offs, giving your children’s old clothes a second life.
Of course, if you find yourself collecting bags and bags of old clothes and never seem to make it to a donation site or second-hand store, then perhaps you should just bite the bullet and leave them out with the trash. Remember that you’re trying to optimize your apartment’s storage space, not put a greater strain on it.
Clothing has a tendency to accumulate quickly. Children’s clothing? Doubly so.
Fortunately, you can manage clothing storage without too much hassle and headache. The most important thing to remember is to try to stay ahead of it—at least until you can get the kids off to college.
Then they’re on their own.
This post is sponsored by The Apartments at Holly Crest, a luxury apartment community located near Lake Norman in Huntersville, NC.c