In preparation for the launch of my book ORGANIZED FOR MURDER, my publisher invited me to post a few days of organization tips on her Facebook site. I’m going to repeat those tips here for the next few days, in case some fans missed the FB postings. These are not tips I included in the cozy mystery novel, but ones I like will add to future editions to this series. So you’re getting the scoop now, maybe years ahead of time.
Read on how I–and Kate McKenzie–keep easy order for our families’ bed linens.
What to Do with Linens –
One of my oldest and most favorite tips is how to have an organized linen closet even if you aren’t a “neat freak.” I told a friend about this a couple of decades ago, when I still had little kids in the house, and my friend still remarks on the idea and has told all her friends, so I know it’s a winner.
Flat sheets and pillowcases can be easy, but folding fitted sheets neatly can try anyone’s patience. Yes, I know there are tips and techniques to do so, but even if I learned, I know I’d never get everyone else in the family to fold the sheet to Bed Bath & Beyond specifications. Worse, unless you carefully stack all the matching pieces together, kids (and spouses) tend to just grab the first right-sized items they can find, leaving matching sheets to not always “wear” evenly as some are used more often than their mates.
To combat these problems, I always just fold matching sheets into roughly the same-sized squares/rectangles and slide them into the matching pillowcases. Makes my linen closet look neat whether I’ve folded the fitted sheet neatly or not, and it’s easy for the youngest (or oldest) family member to grab one pillowcase with everything inside – that’s, of course, if I can con anyone into making a bed so I don’t have to.
This also allows the youngest kids to help without feeling like theirs doesn’t look right. They can fold as best they can, then smash it down. Once everything is in the pillowcase, even smashed down clean sheets it looks the same as everything else, and each group is easy to stack.
Another good thing about this method is that if you have limited linen closet space, you don’t have to use the closet for sheets. When my daughter moved into her first apartment, what passed for a linen closet really needed to be used as a pantry (she didn’t have one of those, either). So, I suggested she do like hotels do when they leave extra pillows and blankets on the upper closet shelves. She used the space up-high, just inside the bedroom closet door, to stack her sheets and blankets. Problem solved and premium closet space in the apartment was then allocated to the kitchen.
One final idea for storing sheets and bed linens is to use the old blanket chest approach. People used to keep chests at the foot of their beds to store quilts and blankets until they needed them on cold nights. You can store bed linens that way, too. If you don’t have room for a chest at the end of the bed, or your family has an old set or unused set of chest of drawers you want to use instead, the larger drawers are perfect for linen storage. Once all the sheets are folded and inserted into their matching pillow cases, it’s a breeze to stack them in the drawer, and later quickly pull out the necessary linens when beds are changed.