I’m continuing my Get Organized series this week with a Get Organized Checklist for your laundry room. If your home is like most busy households, your laundry room sees a lot of action. Dirty laundry piles up quickly when you have several people living under one roof, especially if some of those family members are young, active kids.
If you are just stumbling upon this series, check out the other get organized checklists for your command center, taxes, and linen closet. Each week I’ll be sharing a new checklist for another area in your home so check back if you want to get your entire home organized this year.
Outside the Laundry Room
A few of the best ways to keep your laundry room organized involve activities OUTSIDE the laundry room.
Place a hamper, bin or laundry basket in each family member’s bedroom or bathroom. This will make it easier for them to keep their own spaces tidy, but also protects clothes from getting trampled on or picked up by the dog and used as a chew toy.
If you use hampers that are easy for your kids to carry, you can also save yourself the time and effort of gathering the hampers on laundry day. Instead, have the kids bring them to the laundry room when they are full or on an assigned day.
Keep a bag for dry clean items in the master bedroom closet, separate from the hamper. This will help you avoid accidentally laundering a dry-clean only item. It also makes it easier and more convenient to grab all of your dry clean items when you are headed out the door to run errands.
Essential Laundry Room Items
Aside from your washer and dryer, there are lots of other “essentials” that will make your laundry duty easier.
- Supply Basket or Shelf – a space to keep detergent, fabric softener, stain treaters, dryer sheets or wool balls, etc.
- Laundry Sorter – to separate whites from colors and delicates from towels
- Laundry Basket – to hold clothes once they come out of the dryer
- Wastebasket – for lint and the remains of the note your son didn’t take out of his pocket before throwing his pants in the hamper
- Jar or Bowl – to collect coins and other odds and ends that surface in the wash
- Sock Collector – make it easier to reunite separated pairs by assigning a special spot for lone items
- Mesh Bags – to protect delicate items in the wash
- Drying Rack – for those items that MUST air dry
Figure Out Folding, Hanging and Ironing
Since I’ve been married, I’ve lived in 10 different homes (that’s military family life). In every single home I’ve had a different system for folding my laundry.
Depending on whether you have a table or counter available in the laundry room, how far the laundry room is located from bedrooms, how much of your laundry is hung vs. folded, and whether or not you have hanging space in your laundry room, your folding system will vary.
Currently, although we have a counter in our laundry room, since it’s where we keep the cat food, I don’t use it to fold. Instead, I unload the dryer into a laundry basket, carry it to the family room and stack folded clothes by family member on the coffee table.
For my own clothes and my husband’s, I bring the basket up to our closet and put away items immediately as I fold or hang them. Our ironing board hangs on the back of our closet door for the very rare occasions that we iron something.
The only “ideal” folding system is the one that works best for you. So, as you organize your laundry room think about if you want to designate a space for folding and hanging clothes. Or, perhaps you find it more efficient to bring clothes to each person’s room to be folded and put away immediately. Maybe it works best for your family to do a group folding session in the family room after which everyone whisks away their own clean laundry.
Depending on the system you decided on above for folding, hanging and ironing, you may or may not need these extra items in your laundry room:
- Ironing Supplies – Iron, ironing board, starch
- Folding Station – A simple counter top or table (or even the top of your washer and dryer) where you can fold and stack clothes
- Hanging Station – A rod where you can hang clothes that don’t get folded plus a supply of hangars
- Decorations – Just for ambiance, especially nice if you also do your folding in your laundry room
Download the Get Organized Checklist for your Laundry Room
Click the image below to print or download your checklist.