In the UK we have seasons. Very different seasons. As such we need different clothes. But how to store out of season clothes can therefore be a question that’s asked a lot. Should you store them and swap them over each season, or not? And if you do – how are they best kept so they stay looking great? This article will answer all that…
There are 2 main reasons why we tend to store our out of season clothes away:-
1. We don’t need specific items in different seasons
2. We don’t have space for storing all our clothes year round
Let’s look at each of these in turn…
#1 – We don’t need specific items in different seasons
The basic premise of needing to store out of season clothes is to get them completely out of the way when you don’t need them.
However, in todays world we are much more likely to need more of these clothes throughout the year and are much less dependent on seasonality.
For example – when was the last time there was a season that had the exact weather you expected in that season?
I really can’t remember the last time summer was totally hot, or winter totally cold, and don’t even get me started on Spring and Autumn! In fact – last month I saw pretty much every season in one day – with bright sun, cold rain and wind, even a little snow – and back to bright sun again!
It’s hard to keep up, let alone know what to put on for the day!
And that’s why I don’t suggest storing your out of season clothes too far away, if at all.
Seasons are never just one type of weather
As I have already said, in one day you can see so many different weather types that it is sometimes almost impossible to dress for the day successfully.
You either end up freezing cold or boiling hot – it’s a lottery!
Having clothes that can layer well is a great idea as these can work in all seasons – you can simply take the layers off when you get a little hot and put more on when it gets chilly.
So it makes sense to still have some summer tops within reach in the winter that you can layer up with cardigans etc….
Inside and outside don’t always match
Nowadays we have central heating in winter and air conditioning in the summer, so our homes are not always the same temperature as the outside.
As such, you may want access to all your clothes, so that you can make a decision on what to wear based on where you will be for the day rather than what season it necessarily is.
You get to wear what you want, when you want!
What if you have a day in spring where it’s suddenly boiling hot, and you haven’t swapped your clothes over for the summer season as yet?
It’s not ideal to have to go hunting for a summer dress that morning, and you will usually find that as it’s been stored all winter it will need a wash etc… before it’s able to be worn anyway – by which time you’ve missed the sun anyway!
Having the ability to wear what you need and have most things accessible makes sense in such a changing climate.
#2 – We don’t have space for storing all our clothes year round
In an ideal world we would all have space for all our clothes to be out all the time, and usually the reason we rotate with the seasons is due to lack of space to do just that, but I would always say that the key lies in tackling the amount of clothes head on so that you can minimise enough for your clothes to fit what you have, rather than try to find space elsewhere as well.
After all – having less means that you gain more time which always sounds good to me!. You gain more time for other things because you have to spend less time on your clothes as you don’t have to rotate them with the seasons – thus alleviating the need for extra cleaning, storing, maintenance at least twice a year.
Having everything out means that you don’t have to have those days when you take everything out of storage, wash it, dry it, iron it, put it away and then store all the other seasons clothes away.
Who wants to be adding these days work to the year? I know I don’t if at all possible!
If you minimise what you store then you will have access to what you need, when you need it!
So, before we look at storage, I think the key here is to keep your clothes to a minimum wherever possible, as this will alleviate the need to store things away at all.
Store it close by
Ideally you should be able to store what you have in the space you have – so that it is all accessible at any given time – however this is rarely an ideal world – and a lot of people don’t have the luxury of being able to have all their clothes out to choose from at any given time.
For this reason I say to use storage that’s as close as possible to your main clothes storage. Somewhere that’s still pretty easy to grab should you need any of the other seasons clothes at any given time.
Having a space under the bed or in a spare room for these clothes are great options, depending on your circumstances (I always suggest an ottoman bed for maximum storage that still keeps things to hand).
NOTE – Of course, some seasonal clothes are still worth storing further away and out of reach, like winter coats and heavy jumpers, or holiday clothes for very hot weather (UK doesn’t often have a need for these ;o)!) – but these are far easier to store away when there are less of them and they are much less likely to be missed.
If not, you forget what you have
Out of sight, out of mind – the saying that really comes into play for clothes stored out of the way.
I have done it many times – gone and bought something I thought I needed only to find that when I bought the out of season clothes down from the loft I had already got that item, sometimes several!
This wastes time, money, space etc… and can be totally eliminated if you have most of your clothes to hand at any given time.
With out of season clothes you have to ask yourself how many of them really are completely out of season, and minimise what you truly have to store away.
Everything else should be kept within as easy reach as possible, as you never know what clothes you may need on any given day of the year.
So – are you tempted to stop storing away most of your out of season clothes now? Do you have room to have more of your clothes out year round? I hope these ideas and thoughts have helped.