Somewhere along the line, I read about and appropriated two great baby clothes organization ideas. The thought of going through boxes of clothes soon and starting again in those itty bitty sizes makes me want to share those ideas with you today!
The first idea is simple. (Actually they are both simple). Anyway, instead of organizing and boxing up clothing by size range (ie: "0-3 months"), label your boxes "Boy 1" and "Boy 2" (etc) and fill them up in real time as clothing items are outgrown. We all know that sizing can be widely inaccurate, and this helps your duds get boxed up in true size order. See, simple.
The second idea is my favorite. Basically, I bought two large bins (you could use any container) and labeled them "Outgrown" and "Next Size." I put them both on the top shelf of Reed's closet, and, as you might assume, I toss clothes Reed has recently outgrown into one and keep clothing in (anything close to) the next size up in the other.
This has worked beautifully for a few reasons:
1. The system keeps things accessible. I don't forget about and pass by any clothes that are "next up" because they are only an arm's length away. And if the weather turns cool, and I toss his shorts in the bin, I can easily pull a pair back out for an oddball hot day in October. For that matter, if a pair of shorts looks like they might fit again next summer, you can just store them in the next size bin all year instead of packing them away.
2. It also wards off clutter. The bins give too big and too small clothes a specific temporary home, so they aren't stuffed into an already full dresser or piled in the hallway waiting to be packed away into the attic. The "next size" bin is also great for recent purchases; even if the item isn't the exact next size up, the bin provides a great spot to stash recent purchases and doesn't drag you into packed away boxes or take up precious closet hanging space.
3. Um, the bins look cute! :)
We purposefully painted Reed's walls (tan) and furniture (light green) neutral colors so that we don't have to overhaul the big stuff if our nursery ever houses a little girl. Even though they were a smaller purchases, I tried to follow suit with the bins and other closet accessories. The labels are made out of blue cardstock, so I could redo them with pink or purple if needed.
Here is a wider shot of Reed's tiny closet. While we are talking about organization, come on in for a tour...
1) I did my best to use all of the space. We considered a rod-doubler, but thought we could just use the floor space for extra boxes of diapers and wipes, as well as to store things like his humidifier when not in use.
2) The hanging organizer (along with all of the drawers of the dresser) have transitioned contents many times as Reed has transitioned stages. For example, the top right drawer of the dresser once held about a zillion burp cloths for our spitting-up, gerd baby. We of course don't use burp cloths anymore but they are actually still in the closet, along with also-outgrown swaddle blankets and a moby wrap, just because we have the space. The hanging organizer also currently houses Reed's swimwear (which was in a drawer during pool season). His big winter jacket is folded into the very bottom compartment, because those things are puffy if you let them out!
3) We have gotten use out of the space on the back of the door by hanging a shoe organizer. It does hold Reed's shoes (I keep out any sizes that are remotely close to his current size because baby shoe sizes can vary a great deal- don't trust the numbers!) It also holds a hat or two, extra diaper baggy rolls, a folded up nursing cover, and back up Mr. Monkey--pretty much anything that fits. Two things if you're interested in hanging a shoe organizer: 1, They do come in different sizes so take note of the measurements. 2, I highly recommend getting one with mesh shoe pockets because it breathes and you are able to see all of the contents. If you aren't trying to be neutral, you can find really cute colorful ones too!
4) We added a coat rack from home depot (I think it was 6 or 7 dollars!) to be able to hang his bags, and a jacket or two. Helps utilize some of that empty vertical wall space below the curtain rod.
Hope you got some ideas from those I passed along. If not, now you know more than you ever wanted to know about Reed's clothes and closet. Can't believe I will be organizing two closets and rooms soon!