Updated on February 19, 2012
M.L. asks from Spokane, WA
12 answers

I am amazing at doing laundry, but horrible at putting it away. So we have piles and piles of clean clothes, everywhere. But not only that, I'm in a 'collecting' state, so I don't even have places to put these clothes, which is adding to the problem.

I have been given about 4 giant bags of gently used clothes for my growing boys since they are growing out of what they have.
I have been given about 2 giant bags of maternity clothes, and pulled out my maternity clothes
I have been recieving baby girl clothes for our new baby...

So the reciept of these clothes is needed and we are grateful, but we have no where to put them. So I am boxing up and getting rid tons of clothes to make room for new ones, I have purged a lot already... I have given away about 3 boxes of baby clothes to friends, but so far, I can't seem to make a dent at all. And also, we struggle financially so I keep looking at these boxes of clothes thinking if I can make a profit at all. I need to to a garage sale, or list them on ebay or craigslist... but my camera is on the fritz and the thought of pulling them out and organizing them in lots makes me sick, (I'm 7 months pregnant), though I have sold some on ebay already... then I think, they sell for so cheap, especially at a garage sale, will all those hours of time even be worth it?

Help motivate me and give me some advice. I know I need to buy a dresser too, but the money isn't on the table for that yet (not even for a used one), we are using those plastic drawer storage bins for now.

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So What Happened?

Thanks all, I'm definitely getting rid of a lot of these clothes. But some we have to store. For example clothes that are still a little too big for my kids but they will wear next year, so those have to be sorted and stored... maternity clothes that I don't fit into yet, or have just grown out of but will wear after baby is here, plus my regular wardrobe, new baby clothes for a girl (we have boys, so we have no girl clothes...)

The last time I donated tons of pretty nice stuff, including furniture, I got receipts, but it didn't make a dent in our taxes at all, so I'm wary of that.

And yes, I do not want to be a hoarder at all! Too much stuff overwhelms me, next I have to purge the toys/books and my craft/work room. Oh goodness....

Featured Answers



answers from Pittsburgh on

Personally, I would separate the clothes into sizes and take O. pic of each lot & list on craigslist. It won't be as bad as you think. WAY more labor intensive and time consuming to list on ebay.
Good luck! I know it can be overwhelming to tackle.
Any my personal laundry rule? Nothing stays in the dryer after it's dry, every load gets folded and put away immediately.
If you can get the stuff that won't be used for a significant time into bins, boxes and into an attic or closet--all the better.

4 moms found this helpful

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answers from Phoenix on

I have recently downsized my kids rooms, toys and clothes. Its so FREEING!!!! And so much easier to stay on top of. Next on the list is our bedroom and closet. Then the only thing left is the garage. But honestly, how much clothes do you honestly wear? It seems like I wear the same things over and over again. About 2 years ago, I felt like I had "nothing" to wear. So I literally took every stitch of clothes I owned and threw it all on the bed. I had 80, yes, EIGHTY pairs of pants/shorts/capris. Even more shirts/tanks. How freaking embarrassing and pathetic that I was standing there thinking I had "nothing to wear". I felt horrible. There's so many others with so much less than I have. So I got rid of a TON. Donated all of it to Goodwill. I need to do the same. I think you are doing the right thing but when you think about taking pics and selling on Ebay, that's just too much work. Even tho you will likely make less having a garage sale, its the fastest and easiest to do. You don't even have to sort them, they will all just get dug thru anyway. So if I were you, that's what I'd do. I only kept enough clothes for the kids that fit in their dresser, and same for me. Got rid of everything I didn't really love or wear often. Hope you find some things to help. Good luck!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

I feel your pain. I'd suggest some plastic bins where you label them according to the size (aka: age or weight range) of the clothes contained. I guess you could also organize them by season. In terms of getting rid of clothes, I have a friend who tried and loved this -

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Colorado Springs on

This might be the time *not* to try to sell them, but instead to give them to a local non-profit and ask for a tax receipt. It should count as a charitable contribution on next year's tax return. That will do you some good.

The more stuff you have, the harder the stuff is to manage. It's kind of your friends to give you boxes of clothing, but once you've decided what you really, actually need to keep, give the rest away (if your friends don't want it back) so that other children can have clothes. Even when you're in a financial crunch, don't let yourself be a (yikes) hoarder.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Roanoke on

I have found that the more clothes you have, the more you wear, and more time passes before you "need" to do laundry. Then it piles up, whether it's dirty, or clean and folded. If it were me, I'd go through them all and purge. If you love it, keep it; if you hate it, doesn't fit, isn't versatile in the wardrobe, or unsure, it gets tossed. Take them to Goodwill and DONE. Then you can be awesome at laundry and have room to put it all. And it will be easier to organize.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Goodwill. Get a receipt. It will offset your taxes.
Some charities will come by and pick stuff up at your house.

Milk crates, cinderblocks and plywood can be fashioned into a makeshift dresser. Take a hard look at what you have around the house. You might surprise yourself with what you can come up with.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on


2 moms found this helpful


answers from College Station on

Do you have a "Once Upon a Child" in your area? They take nicer stuff and won't take what we would call play clothes, but they pay decently for what they do take. The clothes have to almost be immaculate, though.

I would not do eBay or Craigslist myself, only because of the hassle of boxing and shipping. That's just me though, I'm lazy!

Garage sales are not too difficult, if you are only selling specific things.

I stored a lot of my boys clothes in space bags under the bed. Last summer, I told all my boys to take anything out of their closets and drawers that no longer fit or they didn't want. I had a huge pile of stuff. We went through it to see if anyone wanted anything from the others that would fit. The rest we took to the church garage sale. We are getting ready to do that again this spring. They have all grown so much this year and all 3 have special occasions coming up- new dress clothes will be in order.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Portland on

I've heard of moms who have a laundry basket for each person and put the clean clothes in them. That way you don't have to have a dresser. You may need 2 baskets for person. The baskets/boxes will keep the clothes corralled. You can put them on the closet floor and they're out of sight.

I have way too many clothes and I'm in the process of giving to Goodwill anything I don't love. Donations do help with the taxes.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Austin on

I had a garage sale last year, put out lots of kids clothes, just marked almost everything $1 and sold a lot of stuff. My neighbor had twins and did the same thing, just had bins of clothes and said everything was a $1, and if someone wanted to buy a lot, then she made them a deal. You can advertise your garage sale for free on Craigslist. Get a friend to help you run it - maybe another friend who needs to purge her closet and you both make some cash!

Also, a friend of mine hangs all their clothes - everyone's on wire hangers like you get at the cleaners, so you can fit a lot into a closet, then you can see what you have. She had 2 boys, hung all their tshirts, only things that went into drawers were socks and undies and shorts.

Get your kids to help you sort the bags of clothes by size. My 7 y.o. helped me sort 3 huge bags when I was preg with baby #2 - she sorted by size and helped put like things together - onesies, sleepers, pants, shirts, etc.

I also made some money selling at a consignment sale - "Just Between Friends". It took a couple days to sort, tag and take to the sale, but I made $77 after expenses, which paid for the things I needed for my baby. Look up "consignment sales" for your area.

Ask your friends for help - when I was 5 months pregnant and moved out of state, I had a friend come and help me purge my closets for a garage sale, and told her she could have some stuff for helping me out.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

I just do laundry, and immediately fold and put away. The kids help me to put their clothes in their drawers. I do laundry often so I don't have to deal with piles. It is a matter of doing it or not...I rather to do it right away. Also I keep the necessary clothes for everyone, that helps a lot. Just do not accumulate clothes, keep the necessary and keep giving away or sell it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Austin on

I feel your pain....I do not like putting things away either. Some things that have worked for me in situations I procrastinate doing are to 1. Do them when you are on the phone chatting with a friend. 2. Ask someone to hang out with you while you do it.

Hope this helps!

1 mom found this helpful
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