Make this space as neat and functional as possible.

By Caroline Biggs
Updated November 20, 2019
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No matter where you choose to store your linens, it's essential to keep them organized. Whether you do that with adjustable shelves, drawers, baskets, bins, or dividers, there are plenty of ways to streamline your linen storage—and that's true whether or not you technically have a linen closet. "The two most important components when building linen storage are depth and adjustability," says Missy Almester of California Closets. "Typically, the items that are stored in this space are quite large and bulky which requires the room to be able to shuffle things around."

Credit: Courtesy of California Closet

Not sure how to maximize your linen storage space at home? We asked Almester for her best advice on how to organize—and make the most of—your linen closet, and here's what she had to say.

Let Go of Old Linens

Though you may still love those sheets you got for a good deal five years ago, hanging onto them isn't doing you—or your linen closet—any favors. "Don't hold on to old linens that you don't use," Almester says. "Sheets should be replaced every two to three years so it's a great time to go through what you have and donate what you're not using." The same goes for towels: If they're threadbare or you've recently upgraded to plusher options, it's time to toss the extras.

Keep Your Linen Sets Together

Nothing's worse than trying to change your bedsheets only to discover you're missing a pillow case. "Keep your linen collections together so they're easy to find," Almester says. "Fold the pillow cases and store them inside your flat sheet, and then fold your fitted sheet and fold it around the flat sheet and pillow cases. Now when you store them inside your linen closet they will all be grouped together."

Store Your Ironing Board Vertically

Tucking away an ironing board is a surprisingly tricky task, but Almester says your best bet is to think vertically. "When storing an ironing board, create a vertical storage area inside the linen closet so you can fold it up to store nicely," she says. "If we're in a space crunch and an ironing board is a necessity, opt for a pull-out style. It takes up two inches of horizontal space and does a 360-degree swivel so you can iron in any direction."

Employ Lots of Baskets

Never underestimate the potential of storage baskets in a cramped linen closet, especially when stashing smaller items. "When storing wash cloths and smaller linens, use baskets to keep everything confined, organized, and tidy-looking," Almester says. "If possible, use the same style of baskets—I recommend the Grove Collection from the Essentials Line by California Closets—for consistency."

Roll Up Your Towels

Searching for a goofproof way to swiftly store your towels in style inside your linen closet? Almester suggests simply rolling them up. "When storing bath linens and towels, it's most efficient to roll them and stack them spa-style," she says. "This will maximize limited shelf space and look beautiful, too."

Comments (17)

Anonymous
February 14, 2020
Most animal shelters accept old towels, sheets and blankets, so donate your old ones for a good cause.
Anonymous
February 14, 2020
I place the folded top sheet, the folded bottom sheet and one pillow case inside the other pillow case so I know I have what I need. Because we buy new sheets every few years we own only 2 sets for each bed, one set on and one in the basket labeled Twin or Queen. The towels are rolled and look great, this includes bath, face and hand towels. To me, Martha was a breath of fresh air when she first appeared amid all the feminist chatter. She embodied both sides and made it ok to like to iron again!!!
Anonymous
January 3, 2020
I'm going to try rolling towels to save space... I seem to be the Queen of Clutter and need to get organized (I'm probably hopeless, considering how old I am, but I'm going to make an attempt!)
Anonymous
January 5, 2019
My baby never slept well (especially through the night) until I started using the website >>SLEEPBABY.ORG<< - that website has been by far one of the best things I've ever got my hands on to get him to fall asleep quickly. Best time is 45 seconds from awake to asleep! Can’t imagine life without it! I heard about it through a kindergarten teacher who uses it to put to sleep a group of 30 children. Check it out! >>SLEEPBABY.ORG<< - sorry, you can't post links here so you'll have to turn it into a normal link :) Best of luck to you and your family!
Anonymous
April 13, 2018
I will definitely try these ideas. I love them.
Anonymous
July 25, 2017
I love all of your ideas Martha
Anonymous
June 26, 2013
A really useful set of guidelines for the storage of linen and sheets. Especially for the pest prevention portion. I often find my comforters and blankets covered in tiny holes that I first thought were just worn-off holes. After a while, I have discovered tiny bugs chewing their way through the cloths! Thanks for sharing and I do agree a little organizing with boxes and drawers would help in creating more space.
Anonymous
August 30, 2012
Does anyone know where You can get the labels?
Anonymous
September 28, 2011
One of Martha's magazines had real physical dividers (plastic-hard?) to separate towels from sheets from wash cloths..........can't find where I saved it. Do you still have that information? Thank you............. :)
Anonymous
February 2, 2011
How would you suggest folding bedroom linens? I have lots of euro, boudoir, king, queen and other miscellaneous pillow cases. I'm re-doing my limited closet space and deciding how to fold everything to put in clear plastic bins. Thank you!
Anonymous
September 2, 2010
We have 8 people- 6 are kids 11 yrs and under. Queen sheets
Anonymous
September 2, 2010
We have 8 people- 6 of which are my kiddos 11 yrs and under. I have queen sheets
Anonymous
May 19, 2009
My sympathies too Jeanie.
Anonymous
May 16, 2009
I have one of these, I love it, I think I need to organize it, again. It really helps out when you need lots of space.
Anonymous
May 21, 2008
My sympathy ..... I hope that you will feel comfort doing what you both agreed to do together. May God bless you.
Anonymous
March 27, 2008
I'm sorry to hear about your husband Jeanie. I think doing this project just might make you feel good, he would definitely love to see you smile. You could have a friend or family member help you.
Anonymous
March 27, 2008
I wish my linnen closet looked like this. My husband and I were going to work on ours this summer. Unfortunatley he passed away on March 2nd. At this point I don't know if I will do this without him. I may or may not.