How to Organize Those Tiny Baby Clothes and Keep Them That Way
You just had your baby shower and now your nursery is littered with outfits, blankets and stuffed animals. It's so daunting! How do you organize all the different sizes? I've got an answer!
I am insanely organized. I admit it. I live to tear apart closets and redo them. I get a sense of calm from putting everything in it's place. If the thought of having to fold and hang a room full of tiny clothes is making you hyperventilate give me a call! I offer a postpartum planning session that includes getting the nursery all ready for baby. Alright, enough advertising.
Breath in. Breath out. Lets get down to business.
Step 1: Organize the mound of baby paraphernalia into clothes, toys/books, feeding supplies, hats, bibs, bedding, etc.
Step 2: Anything that is not going to be needed in the first couple of months put into a clear plastic storage tote with a label. Store these totes somewhere accessible, but not in the nursery unless you have extra space in there.
Step 3: All feeding supplies such as bottles, pump parts and breastmilk storage bags/containers should be brought to the kitchen for washing/sterilizing. Find a shelf or drawer where you're going to keep all of it. I suggest getting a small open topped storage bin for all the small pieces/parts.
Step 4: As for the toys/books-if you have a book shelf you can arrange a few things there. A small, cute storage bin should work for the toys. In the first few months babies don't need many toys. Anything that seems "too old" for an infant put into a clear plastic storage tote with a label.
Step 5: Bedding and linens should be washed and stored on a shelf, in a tote in the closet or in a drawer. Wherever you have room that is accessible.
Are you tired yet? It's time to sort all those clothes! I was lucky enough to get a ton of hand-me-downs from family members and neighbors. With hand-me-downs comes garbage bags FULL of stuff to sort through. So here's my system. It's gotten me through 2 kids of my own, a niece and several clients.
^The secret weapon - many, many clear plastic storage totes
Clothes Sorting Guiding Mothers Style
Step 1: Organize the clothes into piles by size.
Step 2: Anything larger than 6-9 months can be put into clear plastic storage totes, labeled and stored somewhere other than the nursery.
Step 3: The first drawer of the dresser is usually reserved for diapers and creams if your changing table is part of the dresser.
Step 4: Take all the onesies, footie jammies and pants that are newborn (or preemie) and organize them in the second drawer down. Put all the tiny socks into a small, open topped storage bin in the drawer. Most people don't have a ton of newborn/preemie size which is good because the babies fly through that size the quickest. My own kids were giant and wore newborn clothes for about 2 weeks.
Step 5: Gather up all the newborn/preemie dresses, winter jackets/buntings, nice sweaters or jumpers and hang those in the closet. If you are really type A like me then you can even make a hanging size label like in the stores. This will give you extra credit points!
Step 6: Next drawer down should be all the 0-3 month onesies, footie jammies and pants. Hang all the 0-3 month dresses, jackets, sweaters or jumpers next to the newborn/preemie stuff.
Step 7: If you have another drawer to work with then put all the 3-6 month clothes in that drawer. If not, then take all the 3-6 month and 6-9 month clothes and put them in separate clear plastic totes with labels. Store these in the closet in the nursery or somewhere accessible.
Step 8: Same as with the drawers, if you have space in the closet to hang the 3-6 month or 6-9 month clothes then go for it. If not, into a plastic storage tote they go.
Step 9: Bibs can be put near the socks or in the drawer with the diapers. Wherever you can find space. Burp clothes are going to be needed in multiple locations through your house so keep those handy.
Here 's a question I get asked really often. Should I take the tags off of all of these clothes? The answer is yes and no. I usually leave the tags on the larger sized clothes, but anything that I put in drawers gets the tags removed and the clothing washed. It's really hard to organize anything in the first few months of life with a new baby so at least make sure the tags are off the newborn and 0-3 month sized stuff.
What the heck do I do once the baby starts growing out of all these clothes faster than I can reorganize?
Somewhere in the nursery you should store an empty plastic storage tote (yeah, another one) with the lid off. I used to have mine on the floor of the closet. Whenever we were done with a clothing size or toys I threw them in that bin. Once the bin was full I labeled it and put it in the basement. When I knew I was done having kids I passed that bin on to a mama I knew.
When the drawer of newborn clothes was empty I would move the 0-3 month set of clothes up to take it's place and put the 3-6 month clothes into the drawer that formerly held the 0-3 month stuff. Does that make sense? It was a constant rotation. Until the kids reached about a year old then they stopped going through clothing sizes quite so quickly.
I hope this is helpful to some mamas out there. I find that the best way to stay organized is to have a system in place. Did you use a different system that worked well for you? Comment below and let me know! I'm always looking for tricks to be more organized.