The title says it all. That’s right. I quit folding my kids’ clothes. First, let me tell you my sad laundry tale.
If there has been a child in your home for more than a day, you know the laundry situation is less than ideal and easily overwhelming. As a new mom overrun with stuff, especially baby stuff, I picked up a copy of Marie Kondo’s “The Life changing magic of Tidying up” and instantly caught the bug. I purged my closet, only kept what “sparked joy” and began the tri-fold or envelope fold for all our clothes. With one baby, this was manageable. Especially since my little angel son wouldn’t dare go to all my freshly folded drawers and pull everything onto his floor like his future sisters would eventually do.
Fast forward to becoming a family of 5, the laundry and clothes were out of control. Thanks to the power of social media, I had a million different ideas on how to sort, fold and store clothes and no energy as a postpartum mom to implement them. I still had in my mind everything HAD to be folded and sorted and stored the “proper” way. So let me tell you a secret I wish I learned sooner: there is no right way.
Your home, your storage solutions, your stuff needs to work for you and your family. No one else. Enter a new little life changing book that I found in 2021 “How to Keep House while Drowning” by KC Davis that inspired my new “non-folding” clothes method.
In the book, she talks about how she looked down at her daughter’s tiny onesie and realized no one cares if a baby onesie is wrinkled and it most definitely didn’t need to be folded. A lightbulb went on, I don’t care if my kids’ clothes are wrinkled. I quit folding!
So what do we do now? We use storage cube systems and bins to hold clothes. This could also work with a dresser or shelves in a closet. Each child has one for their clothes and each bin is labeled to easily find the right item: short sleeves, pants, pajamas etc. As laundry is washed and dried, my 8 and 5 year old sort the clothes and take their things to their room. They are responsible for putting it away and whether they throw everything in one bin or follow the system is up to them. I then help my toddler take her clothes and put them away with her.
So if you’re like me and laundry feels like a constant headache, now might be the perfect time for a change. Here are my 3 tips for the no-fold-system:
1. Less clothes – when the clothes aren’t folded, whether in bins or drawers, they take up more space and can become overwhelming and hard to manage. Having less items helps kids visually find their clothes more easily, leads to less mess if it all gets dumped out, and means less laundry for you.
2. Give yourself and your kids grace in the transition – doing anything new is going to have bumps along the way. Set realistic expectations before you start and give yourself plenty of time to transition.
3. Focus on the big picture- I have gained all the time I wasted folding clothes to spend quality time with my kids or reading a book or working out. No one. NO ONE wishes they could spend more time folding laundry.
Whatever way you decide to deal with the laundry in your house, just know that how you take care of the clothes doesn’t make you a good mom or a bad mom. You’re already a great mom! Don’t let a pile of clothes your tiny people may grow out of in a week make you think otherwise.