Weekly Organising Challenge – Organised Linen Cupboard

Home Heart Harmony Weekly Organising Challenge - Linen CupboardI should have called this post ‘Organised Ironing Piles’ because that’s essentially what goes on in here! I have tried and failed more times than I care to remember to keep on top of my ironing. There are just never enough hours in the day and I have come to accept that there is never going to be a time when everything we own is neatly ironed and put away. Am I the only one? Perhaps we have too many clothes?

Instead of beating myself up over piles of un-ironed washing all over the house, I have designated our linen cupboard as the place to hide it all!! Now I just have a big ironing session on a Sunday evening and a couple of smaller sessions through the week (usually at 6.30 in the morning when I realise the kids didn’t hang up their uniform the previous night or I don’t have anything left to wear to work!)

Before

Before

I have organised this space in the not too distant past but as you can see, things have spiralled out of control, yet again! I’m going to blame the change in seasons for this one (just as I did with my last challenge!) The top shelf is home to our towels. I forgot to take a ‘before’ picture of this bit prior to emptying it out part way but it was just a mess of towels teetering up out of my reach and falling over into the back of the shelf never to be seen again! The two bags at the bottom here contain all the children’s ‘out-of-season’ clothes and as yet (due to the fact that we didn’t really stop wearing our winter clothes until a couple of weeks ago) I hadn’t got around to switching things around.

After

After – Ignore the mess of wires, they are an unchangeable feature!

Last week, I made the children try on all the summer clothes that had been packed away in these bags and washed pretty much every item of clothing we own! I then packed away all the winter clothes that still fit, gathered up anything that didn’t fit to be passed on to smaller family members and ironed and put away all their summer clothes (all while trying to pack for a weekend away – it looked like a Chinese laundry around here!) The children have an ironing basket of their own which lives in their wardrobe but I try to stay on top of their ironing a bit better so they don’t have too much sitting around un-worn before they grow out of it.

The two baskets on the higher shelves were supposed to be one for me and one for hubby but things have got a bit messed up as time has gone on and there was some confusion! (Yes, really. Can you tell?)

Some of the clothes in the bottom of those baskets have been lost for a while now and I certainly don’t have the patience to lift everything out each time I’m searching for one particular item so they just got forgotten about.

All ready to be pulled out and ironed when the mood strikes! (So, never then.)

All ready to be pulled out and ironed when the mood strikes! (So, never then.)

In order to avoid a reoccurrence, here are the things I have done differently this time:

  • Labelled the baskets so my things don’t get mixed up with hubby’s again.
  • Folded our clothes differently so that everything can be seen at a glance.
  • Thrown out any clothes we no longer wear.
  • Packed away all our ‘out-of-season’ clothes in the same way I do for the children.
  • Limited the clothes we kept to the amount the basket will hold – one in, one out from now on. No more hoarding old clothes with holes in thinking I will patch them up. It just isn’t going to happen!
  • Rolled all our towels rather than folding. It makes it much easier to reach them as they take up less space and the stack doesn’t reach such great heights any more!
  • Continued using the bags at the foot of the cupboard for the children’s ‘out-of-season’ clothes as this was working well.

Home Heart Harmony Weekly Organising Challenge - Linen Cupboard

From now on, as I take things out to iron, I’m sure they will be replaced with clean items coming out of the wash. To add new items, I just tip the basket up on one end and insert the new ones at the top. I suppose at some point, the basket may become less full and things might fall around a bit but, let’s face it, that’s very unlikely!! Here’s a quick final before and after…

Home Heart Harmony Before and After Linen Cupboard

Does anyone have any super-star tips for staying on top of the ironing pile? I would absolutely love to hear them. Please share in the comments. I wish there was a magic spell I could cast to get everything freshly pressed and hanging in the correct wardrobe whenever I desire! In the meantime, I’ll just have to stick with hiding it all away!! (Shhh!)

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P.S. I’m sharing this post over at the iHeart Organizing Four Week ‘Wait No More’ Challenge.

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9 comments

  1. Nan a.k.a Granny Fabulosa says:

    Nice job! I think the like may be my next project.

    Also, “…ready to be pulled out and ironed when the mood strikes! (So, never then.)” I laughed so hard I gave myself a goll-darned asthma attack! Keep up the good writing.

  2. Ruth says:

    I am a homicidal ironer … my sanity has been saved by having a looong rod in laundry with a zillion hangers so everything that needs ironing goes straight on to a hanger as it comes off line or out of drier.

    I can only face ironing once a week and do it in front of TV until all done…. most shirts only need a passing acquaintance with iron. You have no idea how awesome this system is… I’d marry it!

    Strategic folding is my other saviour … life is too short for housework

    • Sue Parfitt says:

      I am so envious Ruth! My long term plan is to create more space in our laundry room for a rod like the one you described. At the moment, we don’t have room for it (sad face!) I will have to keep working on the hubby to give my plans the go ahead! :-)

  3. Brittany says:

    I am the worst when it comes to keeping up with ironing! I really want to incorporate that folding technique to see everything in our baskets (Genius!). Also, im giving a round of applause to those labels–BEAUTIFUL!

    • Sue Parfitt says:

      Thanks Brittany, those labels are certainly making a drab area a bit more cheerful! Unfortunately, they don’t get the ironing done any quicker! 😉

  4. Lisa says:

    Its easy to stay on top of the ironing when you don’t keep an ironing pile. I gave it up years ago and no longer feel haunted by a basket that never emptied. Whenever possible I buy clothes (especially 4 myself) that don’t need ironing. I hang everything straight out of the washer so most dry relatively uncreased. When it’s time to iron I grab what my family needs just for the week and iron only those items.

    Viola, problem solved. I can still do spot ironing if required but it sounds like you have you do that anyway even with your current system?

    • Sue Parfitt says:

      Hey Lisa, funnily enough, I have just started doing this too. Previously, we didn’t have enough hanging space to allow for it but since clearing out the wardrobe in our spare room, I’ve started hanging everything straight away and it has changed my life!! I only iron items that really need it now and the rest goes straight to the wardrobe of its owner! I haven’t even mentioned it to the rest of the family and no-one has noticed yet!! 😉 They are just pleased they always have plenty of wardrobe choices!! Ha ha! Result!

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