I know this one is so simple and really, come on, linens?
This may not be a very likely item that you think of organizing in your home, but you will be glad you did when you realize you may have way more linens than what you really need! When you realize guests are coming to town, you may need extra towels and sheets. You go to your cupboards and it takes you 5 minutes to decide WHICH towels and linens to use! In reality, you really need only ONE set, but instead you have 4 to choose from. Where did all of the excess and abundance come from?
We often think “oh, I really don’t have THAT much excess.” Then when you start to go through your stuff (when you really need it), you realize how much more you own than you really need. So here are a few tips on how to organize your linens!
1. Decide how many linens you need. A good rule of thumb is 2 person (for towels) and then 2 more for guests (so a total of 6 if there are 2 people living in your home.) That might be to many already, but I have found this to be a safe number. For sheets, keep 1-2 sets per bed. No reason to keep more.
2. Don’t save and keep for the unexpected because more often than not, the unexpected never happens. Those unused linens only get pushed to the back of the cupboard, taking up some much needed space.
3. Keep sets together. When you open your cupboards, are the sheets all over the place, with the pillow cases in another area? Store the pillow cases inside one of the larger sheets so that everything is together!
4. Be realistic. You may be dreaming that someday you will live in this huge house with 6 beds – THEN you’ll be able to use all of your linens. Lets stop dreaming and live in reality. If you haven’t used them for years, you probably won’t use them in the next couple years either. Time to get rid of them!
5. Are your towels and sheets so worn that every time you wash them, you have to pull the strings from them, making them smaller and smaller? If you are so sick of savoring them until every last thread, watch for sales and buy new. Then throw away the old! We tend to hang onto the old ones for the “just in case.” Again, that “just in case” rarely happens.
6. Repurpose old sheets. Use them as drop clothes for painting, rags, good for air mattresses (can double them up).
It is so easy to stock pile linens. This also includes placemats, napkins, tablecloths, comforters, blankets, etc. It took me far too long to realize that I did not need to keep as many linens as I did. Don’t be afraid to let go of something. It is freeing and it is one step closer to living an organized life with LESS.