With spring looming on the horizon, it’s time to start thinking about storing winter clothes away for next year. As a self-storage company, Abacus Self Storage knows a thing or two about packing.
You might think to store away your winter wear is as simple as shoving hats and mitts into a bag and tossing sweaters into the back of your closet. However, there’s a little more to it than that.
In this blog, we’ll discuss the importance of properly storing winter clothes and how best to do it. Here’s what you need to know about prepping your closet for spring.
Sort and Purge Clothing
The first thing to consider when storing winter clothes is that not everything is worth keeping. Like any other clothing, winter wear eventually gets damaged, loses value, or becomes outdated. For children’s clothing, especially, you’ll find that the sizes your kids are wearing this year won’t be the same next year.
Before packing anything up, sort through each item and determine if it should be kept, donated, or tossed out. Some belongings, like your children’s soon to be outgrown snow pants, would make a great addition to a bargain bin at a second-hand clothing store. Other belongings, like that warm sweater that has started fraying at the edges, might be ready for the trash bag.
Sorting and purging help you minimize clutter, reduces your workload when it comes time to launder and fold, and helps you weed out things you just won’t want for next year.
You may also want to purge any clothing items that didn’t get worn this year at all. If you go a full year without using a belonging, it’s probably not worth hanging onto, unless it has some sentimental value.
Clean and Dry Before Storing
There’s nothing worse than storing winter clothes only to pull them out the following year and find them musty and mangled. Cleaning your clothing before you store them might seem counterproductive. After all, you’re not planning on wearing them again anytime soon. What’s the point of wasting the laundry soap, right?
Wrong. Washing your winter wear ensures that when you pull it out next year, everything is fresh, clean, and ready to wear again. It also protects against damage.
Something to consider is that a spot as simple as a food splatter could ruin an article of clothing, even if it’s something easy to wash out. The food we eat is loaded with acids and enzymes which slowly break down natural fibres, including the fibres in your clothing. This then weakens the fabric and causes permanent stains.
Just as cleaning is important, drying is equally important. Be sure anything you pack for the winter has been dried thoroughly to avoid mould and mildew. If you pack a pair of mittens still damp from the snow, they could form mildew in the container and spread to other articles of clothing.
Store in Air-Tight Containers
Whether you’re storing winter clothes in the attic, basement, or the back of a bedroom closet, an air-tight container is the best place to keep them. This not only keeps dry clothes dry and clean clothes clean, but it deters tiny unwanted visitors like moths, beetles, and mice from making a home in them and ruining your favourite cozy winter clothes.
Air-tight containers are also of great benefit when storing winter clothes because they’re stackable. This lets you use a variety of containers without taking up any unnecessary space.
Hang with Appropriate Hangers
Some people prefer to hang their winter clothing in the back of a closet. If you have a big closet with room to do so, this is a great way to keep clothing fresh and accessible. However, be sure to use the right kind of hanger for the garment. Thin metal hangers tend not to do well with long-term garment hanging because they crease and sometimes damage the material.
Plastic, wood, or padded hangers are the best way to hang your clothing. For important articles like satin dresses or wool suits, a garment bag adds an extra layer of protection. Be sure to separate fabrics, so they don’t rub together and pill.
Choose the Right Storage Space
Not everybody has access to a large amount of storage at home. Some places you may not have considered are:
- Beneath the bed
- In the bottom drawers of a dresser
- On the top shelf of a linen closet
- In a crawl space beneath the stairs
- On the shelves of an unused bookshelf
If there’s absolutely no space at home, there are also self-storage units to consider. These are spaces rented by storage companies for a monthly fee. If your clothing is packed carefully as described in this article and placed in a self storage unit, your clothing will be safe, dry, secure, and ready for next year. As a bonus, you can use the unit to store other winter belongings you won’t need until next year, such as snow shovels and toboggans.
If you choose to store in a self-storage space, be sure to put clothing on top of a shelf or table inside the space rather than directly on the floor. Even in high-quality storage spaces like the ones here at Abacus Self Storage, there is always a chance that condensation may occur or that a water line in the building could leak water into the unit.
This is highly unlikely, but it’s always best to err on the side of safety and keep anything damageable up high. Of course, this is another area where your air-tight containers come in handy for storing winter clothes. No matter the way you choose to store winter clothing, be sure to keep the outfits you’ll need soonest on top of your storage tote.
For more tips on getting your winter clothes ready for storage, call Abacus Self-Storage at 1-289-807-0981 or contact us here.