We received SO MANY baby girl clothes while I was pregnant with Claire. Now that we have two girls under two (currently 5 months and 20 months), I adapted my original system to manage all the tiny outfits of varying sizes that they will inevitably be growing into and out of over the next few years. It took me a while, especially since we moved within the past few months, but I can now say that I finally figured out a system I’m happy with! Here’s what’s working for us right now:
Clothes They Are Wearing
We decided to have Claire and Emma share a room, which it makes it easy to manage all their clothes in one place. We had two sets of hanging drawers on hand and I’m currently using one set of hanging drawers for each girl.
Out of the sea of clothes ranging from newborn to 24 months strewn across their room, I was really the only person who knew what clothes were currently fitting Claire and Emma. Even my husband was admittedly clueless! When I arrived home to Claire in 3 month pants not too long ago (she’s a year and a half), I knew I really needed to get serious about a labeling system.
I found chalkboard-looking paper gift tags at Hobby Lobby and tied them with twine to the handles of the three upper drawers on each side. I repeated their names on all labels just to be absolutely clear which clothes go with which baby and decided on these categories for both:
- Finishing touches: socks, headbands, sunglasses, gloves, etc.
- It fits!: clothes that are currently fitting
I am only labeling the upper three drawers currently because as soon as I put a label on the fourth drawer down Claire attempted to rip it off. She’s still in the stage of throwing everything everywhere so for now I just put the things that really need a label (generally things they wear everyday and small things I don’t want to lose) in the upper three drawers.
Since Claire is in the phase of throwing everything everywhere, I also had to be strategic about what gets stored in the middle and lower drawers. She doesn’t really mess with the drawers in the middle, so I kept my neatly folded set of “next size up” clothes for each girl in the fourth drawer down on each side, just without a label since she would tear that off.
I also used a drawer in the middle for the clothes that baby Emma is now too big for. I recently did a purge of the 0-3 month size and donated all the clothes of that size that I didn’t love or have an emotional attachment to. I kept a fair amount that I loved from the newborn wardrobe that I want to either save as keepsakes or at least for them to play dress up with their dolls later (a tip from my mom – thanks mom!).
Drawers for Playing
The categories for the very bottom drawers that Claire can reach are loosely defined. I’ve learned that as much as I enjoy being organized, it’s helpful to be unattached to the outcome when it comes to organizing stuff Claire has access to. I’ve made peace with just shoving things that don’t really need to be organized back into drawers so our house can look put together. I am learning that I can still feel organized even when things aren’t perfectly in their place. Here are the types of things I decided to let Claire have her way with:
- Hats: she recently developed a love of putting on hats. So I put all the hats at her level 🙂
- Baby blankets
- Swim suits: She has like 10 swim suits (all given to us, and all now waiting for Emma to grow into them). I used to fold them but now realize I’m doing pretty good if I can get them all thrown into the same drawer.
- Training underwear: she doesn’t wear these yet or really get them out but, like the swimsuits, I’m happy to have them just corralled into the same drawer.
The concept of letting her play with the contents of the bottom drawers and controlling what she has access to has really helped me. Since we moved a few months ago, her room has been a disaster zone day after day. Baby girl clothes everywhere. I couldn’t get a grip on it until I came up with this system that would allow me to control what she can reach. It’s nice to have a plan of where things go and know they won’t get too messed up, and if they do, it won’t take too long to tidy up.
Clothes They Are Growing Into
I used to have the hanging drawers filled with just clothes all the way down to the bottom drawer. But my neatly folded and categorized clothes would get thrown everywhere.
We have another storage cabinet in their room which Claire has access to the bottom half of for books, toys, and stuffed animals. I used the very top two shelves for clothes they are growning into (the two shelves below are labeled for each girl’s diaper size at the moment). I used chalkboard labels that cling to the inside of the cabinet to label a shelf for each girl. This helps even me because even though I’m the one who folded the clothes and put them there, I eventually will forget which sizes things are. So I have one shelf for clothes Claire is growing into, and one shelf for clothes Emma is growing into.
This is also helpful to have when we receive gifts. After Christmas I was just shoving clothes with the tags on into this cabinet because I didn’t have a system and didn’t have a place to put new things. When I finally got this room organized recently, I was cutting off the tags and remembering the Christmas presents they received. There’s also some empty space on each shelf, so next time they get things that are still too big I will know where to put them away.
Sweaters, dresses, and winter coats and pants are hanging high up in the closet. I honestly don’t access the hanging clothes all that often but it’s nice to have them when we need them. I haven’t gone through and done too much tidying of these clothes, but they are generally organized from smallest to largest.
I used to keep the extra baby hangers on the lower bar in the closet, but recently Claire created a new game of taking all the hangers down and bringing them all around the house. I got some pretty cute pictures of this, but finally had the genius idea to not let her have access to them any more to save myself from having to pick them all up later. So now all hangers are hanging up high and out of toddler reach.
Getting the girls’ clothes organized has been so helpful to me.
It makes putting away the laundry easier, and allows me to leave them with another caretaker knowing that they will have what they need when the time comes for an outfit change.
Folding their clothes truly does bring me joy, and having a specific place to put them away where they won’t get messed up makes the whole process easier and less chaotic. Do you have any tips for managing an abundance of baby or even kids’ clothes that works for you? I’m always up for a advice about getting organized!