Knitwear season is almost here! This is how and when you should store away your summer clothes like a pro

Organising experts share their top tips how to store your seasonal clothes and when to make the switch

A cane-insert wardrobe with a chair to the side
(Image credit: A Place for Everything)

One of the top tips of professional organisers and sustainable fashion advocates alike is to store away your seasonal clothes. We have been met with this recommendation time and time again. But we wondered what the best ways to go about storing our clothes are. So we turned to our organising pros for some wardrobe storage ideas and advice.

And as the heatwave seems to have passed and the rain makes its way back onto the weather forecast, we want to know whether it’s time to make the switch from our summer wardrobe edit to autumn (and winter?) clothes making their way back in. And we bet we’re not alone in this. 

Seasonal clothes storage ideas

A storage box with a label

(Image credit: A Place for Everything)

‘We'd all love super-sized Kardashian dressing rooms, but sadly that's not the reality for most of us and the wardrobe inevitably bulges with clothes and shoes for different seasons,’ says Simon Glanville, managing director at A Place for Everything, a home storage specialist company. ‘Rotating your spring/summer and autumn/winter woollies might give you a little more than usual space.’

Apart from creating enough space for your clothing, there are multiple benefits to switching out your wardrobe every season and knowing how to organise your wardrobe.

For one, you won’t have to look through layers of winter coats in the summer or sift through cut-off shorts while looking for a pair of jeans in the autumn season. Getting dressed gets so much more efficient when you see only what you can wear for the given season you’re in.

A mirrored wardrobe in a bedroom with a chair to the side

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

‘One of the main reasons is to save space and reduce the visual overwhelm each season of having everything out,’ explains Craig Hoareau, APDO member and managing director of A Tidy Mind London, a professional decluttering and organising company. ‘You get to rediscover pieces every season when you do the swap, which makes it easier to decide what goes and what stays and avoid unnecessary purchases.’ 

‘When packing things away to store you can also think about whether you wore something at all that season and if it is worth storing for another season. It keeps you in control of your wardrobe and promotes organisation as you go through your wardrobe more regularly.’

How to store seasonal clothes

Underbed Storage Boxes

(Image credit: A Place for Everything)

Now that you know why you should store your seasonal clothes, we can move on to the how. Knowing how to do it properly can protect your clothes from pests (damn you moths!), dust, damage and even mould. So these storage ideas are very welcome.

‘It's worth investing in decent quality storage solutions to make sure that your garments are free from dirt, dust and moths when you're bringing them out. Use lidded or zip-up products to protect out-of-season clothes,’ Simon recommends.

Siân Pelleschi, professional organiser, owner of Sorted! and APDO president, agrees, ‘I prefer clear boxes and storage bags with shape that can easily be labelled so it’s obvious what’s in there.’

Portrait of an expert
Siân Pelleschi

Siân Pelleschi is the owner of Sorted!, a Cheshire-based home and office decluttering and organising service, and the current President of APDO - the Association of Professional Declutterers and Organisers. With Sorted!, she aims to take away the stress and hassle that everyday life can sometimes bring, both in your home and working environment.

Store Basics Plastic Lidded Storage Box

(Image credit: A Place for Everything)

Craig chimes in on the right choice of storage solutions, ‘Make sure they are tight-fitting lids to prevent dust and pests from getting in. The Really Useful Box is your best bet as they ensure the clothes are safe. Vacuum pack bags are also a great alternative and save space, especially for bulky coats. They can protect your clothes from moisture and moths. If using this method, just be careful of putting anything delicate in them as it can create wrinkles in the fabrics.’

He adds an additional warning, ‘Avoid cardboard boxes as these attract pests and do not offer the same protection as a sealed plastic box/bag.’

Adding cedar wood rings or lavender sachets is a good way how to get rid of moths so that these pests are not tempted to get into your wardrobe storage.

How to fold away your clothes when storing

A cane-insert wardrobe with a chair to the side

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Young)

There are several methods how to fold or roll your garments when storing them away, which is why our experts’ opinions differ slightly on this point.

Siân is a folding advocate, ‘Always fold rather than chuck in and keep like with like so that when the time comes to get them out, you know what you’ve got and can put them back in their groups. As flat as you can is best. There is a simple fold you can do that’s quick and easy. Take hold of the shoulders and fold vertically so that each shoulder is one quarter folded behind in a straight line. Then simply fold the item in half to create a rectangle shape and, if needed, again in half to create a smaller rectangle shape.’

Meanwhile, Simon says roll, don’t fold (wherever possible). ‘It might just save you space, time, and heavy creases in six months’ time. However, sometimes rolling is not possible.’ 

‘Stacking flat in storage boxes, clothes get crushed or creased. Plus, the ones underneath are a hassle to retrieve and threaten to mess up all the others. Instead, stack vertically like paperwork in a filing cabinet. You can easily see each item.’

When should you store away seasonal clothes?

‘I’d suggest just as you’re starting to see and feel the season change is a good time but don’t do a complete switch,’ Siân advises. ‘You need to leave some items of the season you’re going to wear while the season is changing. Sadly, it’s not an on/off situation so leave some space in the storage for clothes you might want to add at a later stage.’

In terms of packing your summer clothes away and getting your jumpers and jackets out for autumn, Simon has a more specific time frame in mind. ‘It's pretty cold by October in the UK, so it's worth breaking out the woollies before the clocks change.’ So you still have about a month to go.  

He continues, ‘Likewise, pack away those heavy winter coats in favour of lighter macs in late March, which hopefully can be dispensed with altogether by May.’

Happy wardrobe organising! You will feel great after doing it and getting dressed will be a dream. I speak from experience.

Sara Hesikova
News Writer

Sara Hesikova has been Ideal Home’s News Writer since July 2023, bringing the Ideal Home’s readership breaking news stories from the world of home and interiors. Graduating from London College of Fashion with a bachelor’s degree in fashion journalism in 2016, she got her start in niche fashion and lifestyle magazines like Glass and Alvar as a writer and editor before making the leap into interiors. She feels the two are intrinsically connected - if someone puts an effort into what they wear, they most likely also care about what they surround themselves with.