Wednesday, May 15, 2013

"What, You Grew Again?"

It is no surprise that children are always growing. However, sometimes we find ourselves totally shocked and unprepared for those three inches that they just grew in less than one month.

I shared 3 tips on sorting kids clothes all year round. It has been SO helpful to have a a place to put clothes when they have been outgrown or are being passed down.

hanging kids clothes

In the past I tried storing clothes in those fancy space saver bags. I give them a giant thumbs down. Not only do the bags rip easily but they also don't seal all the way and end up being just another bag with clothes in it.


what, you grew again?
If space is an issue for you, then try labeling some garbage bags by size and gender. I did that when our kid count was at two and it worked well. It kept me from having to sort through clothes every time I was looking for something new.

When we jumped to five kids I tried to find something a little more sturdy than bags.

We have a root cellar under the porch and since I only garden enough to fill zero percent of the space, the rest of the cellar became my storage room. 

Here is what our system looks like...

sorting kids clothes

Each size is in a different tub. I simply taped a labeled index card inside of the tub. These can easily be changed out as the kids grow. I can take the smallest size down and create the next largest size...scoot the tubs over and we are good to go!

When a tub fills up with too many clothes then I go through the items and see what could be given away. For instance there might be 6 pairs of jeans in there and we don't need to keep that many so a few go back upstairs to the Goodwill basket.

The girls have totes on the right side of the shelves with the same system.

sorting kids clothes in tubs

Having clear tubs is great. I can easily see what sizes I am lacking. This way I can be on the look out for those sizes. I also like keeping a tote designated for shoes for each gender.

Isn't editing great? I can easily crop out all of the other stuff in the room. :-)

I prefer to keep it real though...so come on in to my storage room. 

having a place to store clothes

Sometimes I can't get to the totes because not everything fits or I just need to find time to sort things that have come from upstairs.

finding a place to sort kids clothes

Either way, it is a working system and it takes away the shock when one of the kids comes and tells me that their pants have turned into capris in the middle of winter!

This is what worked for us. What works for your family when it comes to storing kids clothes? 

Sharing this at:
Living Well, Spending LessThe Inspiration GalleryLove of Family and HomeSerenity NowTatertots & JelloIt's Overflowing, Organizing Made Fun

34 comments:

  1. Clothes sorting is one of the biggest, most painful things I think I have to deal with. It always feels overwhelming! I like the bins idea....maybe that will help organize me!! Thanks!!

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    1. Karissa,

      I agree that it is one of my least favorite things too. The bins have definitely helped! :-)

      ~Sarah

      Delete
  2. What a great idea! If you get a chance, please share this on my linky party: http://suburbsmama.blogspot.com/2013/05/sunday-link-party-7.html

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Rita, I'll try to check it out!

      ~Sarah

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  3. I'm expecting baby number three soon, so I've recently been sorting through all the clothes, and I wish I had such an organized system. I'm working on it! (Love the keeping it real pics, by the way).

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    Replies
    1. Alexis,

      Congrats on soon to be baby number three!

      ~Sarah

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  4. Thank you so much for sharing at the Overflowing party ~ I'm seriously in the middle of this right now with 5 kids (and twins due any minute!). I LOVE the clear bin idea. You've inspired me to things different =) PIN'd!!!

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    1. Wow, you are SUPER mom! Congrats on your beautiful, growing family!

      ~Sarah

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  5. Very similar to my system, which only remains tidy for 10 minutes after I re-tidy. If my kids aren't wearing the clothes in the bins, then usually a cousin has them, so it seems that there is always a bin coming in or going out. Still, it is the basis for organization, which is better then nothing. Dana @ Project Day

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    1. Dana,

      You are so right, just having something really helps even if it isn't "organized" all of the time. :-)

      ~Sarah

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  6. What a great idea! When my children were younger, we had a couple of tubs, but didn't get that organized about it - this system is really awesome to be able to grab the sizes you need, when you need them!

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    1. I'm thankful that we have the space to pull it off. It really does help lower my stress levels when the kids need bigger clothes. :-)

      ~Sarah

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  7. ps how did those hangers work for u?
    Ephesus

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    1. I haven't gotten a chance to try them yet but I can't wait!

      ~Sarah

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  8. I love this idea and do the same thing with cardboard boxes (organized them during one of our recent moves). I'd love to switch to the clear bins. What size do you use. Also, I've been separating winter and summer for each size, do you think that's unnecessary? And what do you do with coats/jackets or frilly dresses? Those all seem to take up so much space.

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    1. Allyson,

      Hmmm, I'm not sure what size my bins are off hand. I've kept winter and summer clothes together. It keeps it simple and then I don't have to decide which bins jeans should go in since in Minnesota they are pretty much year round attire. :-) I do however keep coats and frilly dresses hanging in the kids closets. That definitely helps with the space issue otherwise those things alone would fill up the tubs. I hope that helps!

      ~Sarah

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    2. Okay, you've inspired me to get this finished before #5 joins us in June/July. My husband and son are away on a camping trip this weekend and I'm very much tempted to jump in and surprise my husband when he gets home...maybe I'll at least buy the bins and tape the labels inside...that's probably much more realistic :)

      Delete
    3. Allyson,

      Congratulations on your soon to be newest addition! I am sure that your husband will be thrilled. Maybe he can help you fill the tubs once you buy the supplies. :-)

      ~Sarah

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    4. I cleaned out the store of the particular bin I liked, got them all labeled, filled, and stacked before hubby came home 12 hours earlier than planned..woohoo! Now I just need to wait for them to restock the bins so I can buy the 4 more I need :)

      I ended up choosing the 71 qt bins designed for stacking, since we don't have any shelves to put them on. I think yours might be the 66 qt, or at least they look just like them to me.

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    5. Allyson,

      That is awesome! Here is to hoping that the store restocks them quickly! :-)

      ~Sarah

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    6. Allyson,

      That was fast! I have been going into a certain store for weeks hoping that they will get some bins in stock that I need but I have had no luck. I am glad that you didn't have to wait long to find more bins! :-)

      ~Sarah

      Delete
  9. Okay I switched to plastic bins recently too! Space bags spent a fortune for nothing. I'm tackling clothes organization this weekend among other projects.

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    1. Sarah,

      Good luck tackling those projects! :-)

      ~Sarah

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  10. I sold all of our vacuum seal bags (I had a couple brands) on Kijiji. I loved them when I first bought them, but they drive me CRAZY! They slowly fill with air (even if there are no holes in them) or get holes from the folds that appear when you suck the air out of them (so they fill up with air even faster). Also, any time you want to take one or 2 items out you need to vacuum it again! But they did make moving a little easier.

    Right now, when our son outgrows anything it goes into a bronze coloured roughneck rubbermaid bin (we already had an empty stack of them in the garage) and then it goes into his closet. The problem is that the handles on the bins stick out so that wastes space in his closet. He's only 1 1/2 and his closet is almost full! So I clearly need to re-evaluate this system! Our main problem is that we don't have a storage area in our home. I really wish that we did!

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    1. Amelia,

      Those are exactly the reasons why I didn't like the vacuum seal bags. Have you tried using smaller totes and storing things under his bed? The under the bed spot can be a great place to utilize when storage space is limited.

      ~Sarah

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  11. I have been using this same exact system for years and love it!!! I mention this because I have an upcoming post very similar to yours and don't want you to think I'm "stealing content". I will be sure to link to your beautiful site so as to show how it can be done in more than one way. ;)
    Kindly,
    Rachel from UsefulBeautifulHome.com

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    1. Rachel,

      Too funny...I know lots of moms have figured this out before me. :-) Your post will help many, I am sure of that! Thanks for stopping by.

      ~Sarah

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  12. I too use the "bin system" and have been for years!!! (With 6 kids it's a must!) We also move frequently thanks to my husband's job, and I can tell you the movers are always impressed when they see the bins all lined up and labelled!

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    1. Mel,

      I can imagine all of those smiling movers faces now! :-)

      ~Sarah

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  13. Just out of curiosity What do you consider a "wardrobe" for your kids. 2x a year I intentionally go through all 4 of my kids clothes (warm weather / cold weather) and I start them off with 6 pair of bottoms and 8 tops & 2 dress outfits. But when I go back through to switch them out they usually have over a dozen pair of pants 40+ tops and a bunch of other miscellaneous items?!?! Grammas love to shop for the kids and while I appreciate the help it make for lots of extra work for me and a lot of clothing clutter I cant seem to tame.

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    1. I usually shoot for 6-8 pants, 6-8 shirts, 3-4 sets of pajamas and a few dress outfits. I've started saving larger quantities though of boys pants because of how quickly they get holes in them. :-)

      ~Sarah

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  14. Love Amazon Prime!!!

    I love your storage system. I've started giving more away. Since we live in the city and have 7 people in 1400 sq feet I don't have much storage. I wish I had a root cellar. The attic fries elastic so since I have a gap between my boys if it isn't extra special or directly passed to the next kid (both sets of boys are close in size with a large gap between the two) I just give it away. Clothes have away of getting out of hand here. Especially when my daughter receives hand me downs that won't fit for awhile. I need an organizer to help me out haha.

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    1. Bethany,

      Giving away the clothes can definitely be helpful when you have age gaps in between kids and limited space! :-)

      ~Sarah

      Delete

Thank you for commenting, I read every single one. Because spam is so prevalent I moderate all comments. I also will delete any that are inappropriate or hurtful. All other comments will be approved and published in between me chasing around my five little tornadoes! For any specific questions feel free to email me at aninvitinghome@gmail.com. Thanks for reading and following along!

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