Organizing Clothes for the Seasons + free printable

Clothes Organizing for the Seasons

Hi friends!  Well now that it’s officially fall, and our temps are dropping, dropping, dropping, I thought it was time I pull out my long sleeve shirts and heavier type sweaters.  Ugg.  I am not a fan of cold weather or snow.  I know it sounds all magical and stuff to those of you who live in the warmth all year round but let me tell you this…there is nothing magical about minus 40 degree Celsius weather (which is the same temp in Fahrenheit). That is just plain chill you to the bone cold y’all!  Of course it’s not that cold all the time, often we are spoiled with balmy minus 20 degree Celsius (-4 degrees F) temps so that is quite nice. Ha!  Probably the thing that took me the longest to adjust to when I moved to Northern Alberta were the temperature fluctuations here.  Take yesterday for example.  It went from -1 degree Celsius (30 degree F) in the morning to 20 degree Celsius (68 degree F) in the afternoon.  You never really know how to dress around here!  Keep that in mind when you see the variety of clothing in my closet will you :)

So I know I shared my step by step clothes switch out process with you before but I thought I’d do it again as a refresher for those that are interested.  It does take a little time but it is so worth it.  It forces a good clothes purge as well which is important to do a couple of times a year so you aren’t sifting through clothes that you don’t like every morning.  I only put away the clothes that are obviously summer and that I would definitely not wear during the fall/winter.  So that means tank tops and summer dresses are put away (t-shirts stay out as I wear those year round).  Once I clear those out of my closet that frees up space for my long sleeve shirts to come in.  Also when it is freezing cold out and I’m shivering I do not want to go into my closet and see my cute tank tops staring back at me mocking me with everything they are and represent.  It would make me cry big fat ugly tears.  So I hide them away so I don’t have to be reminded on a daily basis of their awesomeness.  You get what I’m saying?  It’s sanity preservation at it’s finest.

seasonal clothes bins

I keep four totes on my top shelf in my closet to contain my off season clothes. Ignore the summer hat that needs to be put away.

The first thing I do is pull those down and pile them on the bed. These totes are very old and I can’t remember where I even got them. It’s not the tote that matters so much anyway as the size. Purchase totes that work for the space you have available.  (Note: when I had a much smaller closet, I used the space under my bed to store my totes.)

seasonal storage clothes bins

Now I head back to my closet and pull out all the really summery clothes that I know I definitely won’t wear in winter and need to be tucked away (sniff).  I throw all these things on the bed as well and just pile them up.  I’ll deal with these in a minute.

seasonal clothes ready to be put away

Now that my closet is feeling lighter and I’ve freed up some hanging space I head back to the four totes on my bed.  I pull out the long sleeve shirts, heavier type sweaters and bulkier scarves and try them each on just to be sure it all still fits and I still love everything that’s there.  This is where following my 11 Rules for Parting with Your Clothes comes in handy (see below).  All the keeper clothes get hung up in my closet.  (Note: most of my lighter sweaters and sweatshirts stay folded and stored up on the top of my closet year round, I don’t put those away because I don’t need that space for anything else and will often wear those things throughout the year.)

I love using the thin hangers in my closet as I find that they almost double my hanging space.

thin hangers

Org Junkie’s Tips for Parting with Your Clothes

1. If you haven’t worn something in a year then out it goes regardless of condition, price or size. Why a year? Because you cover every season in that period of time. If you haven’t worn it during the year, you probably never will.

2. If you have a piece of clothing that you wear but are annoyed with it every time you do, seriously stop it.

3. If it’s waiting to be mended and it’s been waiting for a long time then enough is enough already.

4. If you hate to iron and your ironing pile sits there totally neglected while you wear all your favorite clothing over and over again, why do you still have an ironing pile?

5. I’m not opposed to keeping your “skinny” clothes (and I know we all do it) but for goodness sakes you don’t need to keep all of it. Styles change, your tastes change, your body shape changes so chances are good that when you get back to that size you’re going to want new stuff anyway.

6. If you absolutely love a shirt but never wear it because you have nothing to wear it with, well guess what, a mate isn’t going to magically appear in the night. Follow the one year rule.

7. Sentimental clothes that you aren’t wearing shouldn’t reside in your closet. Either take a picture of it and preserve the memory or limit yourself to one tote of “clothes to show my kids so they can laugh their heads off at me someday”.

8. Don’t hang onto something that is “just alright” because you don’t have something better yet to replace it. Let it go now unless it means you go naked, that wouldn’t be right.

9. You don’t have to do it all at once. Try organizing in stages and be motivated by your success. One day you could do shirts, the next day shorts, etc..

10. Try everything on. This one I can’t stress enough. Do not hold something up and say oh this is so beautiful I’m going to keep it. That’s too easy and what you might not remember is that, although it’s beautiful, the buttons gape at the front showing off your woman parts. Nope we don’t want that now do we. Get rid of it.

11. You only have the space that you do. Jamming your clothes into the closet and fighting with them every single day to find what you need won’t make your closet grow in the night. It will only make you grumpy…every single day. It’s not worth it.


And just in case you need a daily kick in the pants reminder, here is a copy for you to print out and stash away in your closet if you need to :) Click on the link below for the pdf file.

11 Tips for Parting with Your Clothes

So now that I’ve emptied my four bins, it’s time to fill them back up with the summer items I pulled out earlier.

empty clothes bins

As I’m putting things away I again refer to my 11 Rules again as I assess each piece and decide whether or not to keep it.  No point in storing something I have no intention of wearing again.  Plus my other self imposed rule is everything has to fit in the four bins.  So if necessary I purge until it fits. Stuff that isn’t staying gets thrown into a pile on the floor.

bins ready to be stored

Finally I put the four bins back up on the top shelf.  I tidy up the other areas and give a good once over of all the other clothes in the closet so I am only keeping what I love and wear regularly.

Clothes switched out (and no I don’t color coordinate, I like to organize my clothes by type instead)

Now I pick up the clothes off the floor that didn’t make the cut to give them away to either the thrift store or friends.  I have on friend in particular who just loves getting my hand me downs.  Also our local thrift store is a non-profit.  All proceeds go towards purchasing much needed equipment for our town’s hospital.  I like to donate there for that reason and it’s why I don’t try and sell any of my stuff usually.

So that’s pretty much my process for organizing clothes for the seasons.  My clothes are now ready for fall and winter even if I’m not emotionally prepared.  Seriously I wasn’t joking when I said I wanted to move to Florida!!

This is what works for me, each person will have to find the system that works best for them based on the space they have available to them.

Love in the Closet (close up of the print that I just hung in my closet)

See my updated seasonal clothes switch out system right HERE.

Now who wants to go organize some clothes? Anyone? Anyone? :)


Filed under: Closets


5 Responses to Organizing Clothes for the Seasons + free printable

  1. 1
    Seana Turner says

    Nice summary of the steps to the seasonal change! I totally agree that now is the time to do a survey of the clothes and let go of anything that isn’t working. I tell clients, “Don’t store what you won’t want next Spring!”

  2. 2
    Shawnda says

    I don’t have that many clothes, so I just have all my clothing available all year. I like to have access to my sweatshirts for cool summer evenings and I own about 2 sweaters, so they just get folded on a shelf in my closet. Same thing for hubby and our kids. We keep what we really like and wear, get rid of the rest and keep it all accessible all the time.

  3. 3
    Marcia Francois says

    Our climate is almost such that you can keep the same clothes out year-round. Almost.

    I have two “bins” with thick, winter jerseys but the rest hangs all the time and is on my shelf :)

    So Laura, have you read the Konmari book? I don’t know if you’ve seen I’ve blogged about 13 posts (!) – slightly obsessed….

  4. 4
    Barb says

    I love your honesty. Too many times I read blogs and their closets are these picture-perfect things. Everything is arranged in rainbow order, evenly spaced out and is so gorgeous. But I wonder if it’s even realistic. I arrange my clothes by type and group like-colors that way. I store my out of season clothing in bins under my bed.

  5. 5
    Deborah says

    A little advice from an avid knitter; don’t hang your sweaters on a hanger like you would a shirt. It will ultimately stretch the sweater out at the shoulders and ruin it.


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.