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How to Fold a Fitted Sheet -- and Keep an Organized Linen Closet

Martha Stewart Living, October 1997

Folding a fitted sheet can be frustrating, especially when you need to conserve space in your linen closet. Who better to teach you how to fold a fitted sheet than Martha Stewart? Say good-bye to scrunched-up, wrinkled sheets with this foolproof technique for how to fold a fitted sheet.

This technique yields a fitted sheet that will lie flat in the linen closet. These instructions are for a right-handed person; just reverse them if you're left-handed.

How to Fold a Fitted Sheet 

1. Stand holding the sheet by the two adjacent corners of one of the shorter edges. With the sheet inside out, place one hand in each of these two corners.

2. Bring your right hand to your left, and fold the corner in your right hand over the one in your left, enveloping it. Next, reach down and pick up the corner that is hanging in front; bring it up, and fold it over the two corners in your left hand; the corner that's showing will be inside out.

3. Bring the last corner up, and fold it over the others; with its right side showing, it should envelop the other three corners.

4. Lay the folded sheet on a flat surface and straighten it into the shape shown.

5. Fold the two edges in so all the elastic is hidden.

6. Fold the sheet into a rectangle.

7. Continue folding until the rectangle is the size you want it to be.


More Ways to Organize Linens

There's something incredibly satisfying about opening up the linen closet to see not unholy chaos but color-coded bundles neatly tied in a bow. To keep bed linens organized, fold each set -- pillowcases, top and fitted sheets -- and wrap with a 1 1/2-yard square of fabric inspired by Japanese furoshiki. Then, using like colors, coordinate the sets by room or by sheet size, and shelve them together. This method makes finding the linen set you need a snap.


How to Tidy Up a Linen Closet

Bed linens shelved by type -- fitted sheets stacked next to pillowcases -- quickly become disordered when you try to retrieve them to put together matching sets. Try this method instead: Slip each set into one of its pillowcases, and store the sets by size -- twin, full, and so on -- with colors, trim, or other defining details clearly visible.


In the ideal linen closet, everything is visible. Everyday items are easy to reach, and seasonal items, such as baskets of beach towels, are on the top and bottom shelves. Drawers give delicate antique linens an extra level of protection. It saves time to group linens according to size and the room they're used in; the stacks are spaced apart, which allows linens to breathe and allows you to find what you need easily.


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