Last Updated on March 19, 2021 by Katie Barton
One of the real surprises of motherhood is how much stuff comes along with the job. For babies, there are big items like swings, highchairs, pack n plays, bouncy seats, and of course, the little stuff like bottles and pacifiers.
For older kids, there are piles of toys and books. And of course, we can’t forget school papers. The endless amounts of papers kids bring home may be enough to drive even the sanest mom crazy.
These items are usually in your face enough that when it’s time to let them go, you’re ready. They aren’t overlooked.
But one item that is often overlooked and contributes to extra clutter and work is clothing.
Not just clothes that have been grown out of or worn out, but clothes that sit in the closet – or better yet, get thrown on the floor.
If you’re like me, with kids who are old enough to dress themselves (and especially if those kids are a tween or teen girls), you inevitably end up washing the clean clothes that they try on, throw on the floor, and never put back up.
Sick of continually seeing clothes on the floor and realizing that my kids wore only a third of what was in their closet, I did a major purge and got rid of more than half of their clothes. I left them with what most would consider sparse.
Here’s what I learned.
Just Like Adults, Kids Wear Their Favorite Pieces Over and Over
I’m willing to bet that you reach for your favorite when you grab a pair of jeans. So do your kids. If you pay attention, chances are, your kids are choosing the same outfits over and over.
Each child had a few pieces that were their absolute favorite and didn’t care much about anything else.
They Were 100% Fine With Purging
If you’ve put off going through kid’s clothes because you think it will be like pulling teeth, you might be wrong.
While the idea of going through their clothing seemed boring at first, my kids got super into the process after we started. The result was enjoying organizing their closet because it only contained the items they liked.
And as a bonus, there was a whole lot less to organize. My youngest two daughters? clothes each fit in one of the Sterilite three drawer organizers.?
Fewer Clothes Equals Less Laundry
Most parents operate on the idea that purchasing their kids more clothing will result in longer breaks in between having to do laundry – this is true. But in my experience, what happens is that the laundry piles become overwhelming.
The dirty clothes thrown on the floor get mixed in with the clean clothes thrown on the floor, and the laundry pile is gigantic.
When your kids have fewer clothes to choose from, laundry needs washed more often. However, it will be in small manageable, non-overwhelming chunks. And the best part of all – you won’t be rewashing clean clothes.
Less Clothing Just Makes Sense
Getting rid of half your kid’s clothes isn’t punishment; it just makes sense. It creates a closet full of clothes they like and wear and leads to fewer clothes on the floor, less clutter, and a better laundry system.
If you’re sick of picking up clothes off the floor or dealing with mountains of laundry, get rid of some clothes. It will make a big difference.
Katie Barton is the owner of Cabin Lane. She's also a home improvement writer for Bob Vila and Homedit. Her cleaning and organizing advice has been featured on Realtor.com, Yahoo News, GoBankingRates, and more. In her spare time, you can find her with a paintbrush in hand, searching for her next project.