Tips for Organizing Your Bathroom Drawers and Linen Closet

2 Materials
60 Minutes

The bathroom closet and drawers are areas of the house that can quickly get out of hand. Over the years, I’ve discovered that there are really just two tips that make the biggest difference in keeping the bathroom tidy and under control...

1. Have less stuff. Less stuff = less clutter, and less of a chance for things to get jumbled, messy, and hard to find.

2. Make sure there’s a designated space for everything. If I have a specific spot for everything, and I commit to making sure everything goes back to that specific spot after use, it reduces the chance of things getting just tossed in a drawer. It also helps to serve as an indicator of when it’s time to weed out and get rid of stuff. If I have an new item that I don’t have a place for, it signals that I need to get rid of something else, in order for the new item to have a spot.

Linen Closet

It works best to start with a totally blank space. This gives you the chance to thouroughly clean the closet or drawer before placing things back in it, and an opportunity to experiment with the best way to arrange thing to work for you.

First, get rid of extra sheet sets and towels that you never use. I mean, how many sets of sheets do you actually need? You probably gravitate to the same couple of sets that you prefer, right? Don’t you have one or two that are more comfy or soft, and you find yourself using those over and over? I bet you have some sheets in your closet that haven’t been used in ages— they are scratchy, or have a hole, or are not the right color–but you keep them “just in case”, right?

If you want your linen closet to be more functional, it’s time for those unused sets to go in the donation bin.In my linen closet, I have only three sets of sheets. Two are identical sets of good quality, high thread count white sheets. One set is on the bed, and one is in the closet to rotate out on laundry day.

However, if truth be told, more often than not, I just pull the sheets off the bed, wash/dry them, and then put them right back on again to save myself the trouble of having to fold king-sized sheets every week. Folding sheets is the worst, right? 

The third set of sheets we own is a thick set of “fuzzy” sheets, as we call them. They only get used in the deepest, darkest, coldest parts of an Iowa winter, like January and February. But they are worth keeping around for those cold spells. 

That’s it. All other sheets have long been donated, so they aren’t taking up space in my linen closet.

Next, everything in the linen closet needs a specific place to go. I keep all the sheets folded together in sets, all the bath sized towels folded on one shelf, all the hand towels together on another, and all the wash cloths together.

Also, I make a point to fold all my towels the same way, and place them in the closet so the folded edge faces out. This not only makes for a tidier look to your closet, but it helps you to grab a towel and pull it out easily without disturbing the rest of the stack. If you have all the loose ends facing outward, it’s difficult to tell where one towel ends and the next begins!

For the bottom of my linen closet, I bought two canvas baskets to store my extra soaps, shampoos, and lotions. I like that I can just grab the rope handle, slide a basket out, and easily see what’s in there.To follow my rule of “have less stuff”, I make a point to completely use and throw away one bottle of lotion or shampoo, before opening the next. Otherwise, it’s easy to end up with a closet jumbled with half-used bottles, which leads to unnecessary clutter. These baskets hold a resonable amount of back-up supplies, and keep them easily accessible.

Bathroom Cabinets

Because bathrooms typically hold such a variety of health and beauty supplies, it’s really important to have a specified location for everything, to prevent your drawers and cabinets from becoming “dumping zones”.The easiest and most functional system I’ve found involves using simple plastic bins of various sizes. I used bins that we already had, and just pieced them together to fit nicely in my tall cabinet.

The trick is finding bins that are the right size to hold the items you’re placing in them, but also that are the right size to allow them to slide in and out easily. Less is more. You’re trying to avoid stuff getting shoved all the way to the back of the cabinet where it will hide for years.

With this system, you can easily slide a basket in and out, or lift the whole thing down and place it on your counter to get find something inside.Some of my baskets are plastic shoe bins, and some are storage totes, and a couple are even meant for the fridge or freezer. The key is labeling them. I used my favorite sticky chalkboard labels that you might remember from my  pantry makeover.

Bathroom Drawers

I have this big, deep cabinet in my bathroom, and I also use plastic bins in here to hold frequently used bottles and sprays. It keeps them from jumbling all around, and also protects the drawer from any leaks or spills.

In my makeup drawer, I used these smaller plastic organizers that are interlocking. I like how it gives all these small items a place to go, and keeps everything from shifting around in the drawer. Everything in its place makes it so much easier to locate what I need.

Visit me at The House on Silverado for more great organization tips.


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Niky | The House on Silverado
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