How to fold a large bath towel

After I started folding my fitted sheets in the manner I detailed earlier today, I realized that it was very similar to how I fold my large bath towels. The way I fold towels is extremely convenient and efficient because the towels are folded in such a way that I don’t have to refold them to put them on the hanging bar. I just pull them out of storage and hang them up.

1. Either lay the bath towel front-side down on a clean surface or, if your arms are long enough, hold the towel in a similar manner:

2. Fold into thirds (lengthwise):

3. Fold the long strip in half (bring short edges together):

4. Fold the strip in half again:

I fold smaller towels in the same manner but skip step 4 in the process.

35 Comments for “How to fold a large bath towel”

  1. posted by Another Deb on

    Why didn’t I think of that? It make so much sense to store things in the “ready” state. Now I am thinking about what else I can do that with.

    For several years I stopped at a mid-commute gym for my workout. As I put away clean laundry, I used to roll my gym clothes in sets. I kept several pairs of clean socks in the duffel and all I had to do was toss in the roll that contained the exercise pants, sports bra and tank top.

  2. posted by Lose That Girl on

    Thanks for including photos – really helps!

  3. posted by Stephanie on

    This is teetering on the edge of striving for perfectionism. I hope no one ever looks in my underwear drawer because they would see how perfectly folded and organized by material it is! Towels I don’t care so much about but my underwear HAS to be neatly folded! :)

  4. Avatar of Erin Doland

    posted by Erin Doland on

    @Stephanie — Have you seen my sock drawer? http://unclutterer.com/2008/02.....ter-slide/

  5. posted by STL Mom on

    If I fold in thirds in both directions, my bath towels fit perfectly into my cupboard. I think that any folding method that helps them stack neatly where you store them is the best method.

  6. posted by Yvonne on

    My mother taught me to fold towels this way nearly forty years ago – nice to see that that good ideas stand up to the test of time.

  7. posted by Margi on

    It always amazes me that people don’t already know how to fold a sheet or towel. I have always taken it for granted that this is the most efficient way of folding. My mother taught me this some 55 years ago…as soon as I could do it.
    She was also an original “unclutterer.” She wouldn’t have a toaster because the stove had a broiler…you just had to turn the toast over. We used sterling silverware because that’s what we had. Why buy stainless when we already had knives, forks and spoons? We ate fish, lobster, abalone, and venison because my father was an outdoors man by by career and choice. I was totally deprived of t.v. dinners and store bought bread for many years. My mother made biscuits, corn bread and griddle cakes. This wasn’t on a farm, it was in modern so. Calif. I felt totally deprived. For years I rebelled, so now I am having to declutter all that stuff I collected. Luckily I’m not a hoarder, but I have a lot to get rid of. Thanks for freecycle.

  8. posted by Tighe on

    Heh! I work at a Sheraton hotel as a bellman and the other day I got a housekeeper to show me how they fold their towels. They do it exactly the same way!

  9. posted by Wendy on

    Been doing this for years – I’m glad that I’m naturally efficient!

  10. posted by Kris on

    Yes, I too have been folding towels this way for years.

    Let me add a couple of related suggestions. (These suggestions are probably obvious to many readers.)

    First, when you put the folded towels on a shelf, place them with the folded side out. This makes it easy to grab a single towel. It also makes it easy to count the number of towels in the stack. (And it looks neat too!)

    Second, if you want to remove a towel that’s not at the top of the stack (maybe because the top towel isn’t the color you want), then first slide one hand into the stack above the towel that you want to remove. Gently lift your hand up an inch or so. Then use your other hand to remove the towel you want.

    This method allows you to remove that towel without disrupting the other towels in the stack.

    (You may find that you’re already doing this automatically, but you may realize that your kids need to be shown how to do it. And the method applies to folded and stacked clothes as well as to towels.)

  11. posted by luxcat on

    or… if you have an odd shaped space and you still want to fold your towels in thirds but you have to utilize a funky (in our case narrow) cupboard… you can fold one long side, then the other long side, as shown in the photo… then ROLL the towel up rather than fold it again. you can still grab one towel and unroll it to put it on the bar, but you can stack them in a more narrow space.

  12. posted by Wendy on

    We roll our towels- I had to prove to my husband that it was the most efficient way to store them in our space, though.

    So, why not fold width-wise first? Then you could do it in your lap and you wouldn’t need a large surface for folding.

  13. posted by Stephanie on

    @Erin,

    EEEEEEEEK! I will have to send you pictures of my sock drawer! =)

  14. posted by OXM on

    You mean folding one side, then turning the towel and folding the other side, and then cursing because bath towels are unfoldable is not how everyone is doing it?

  15. posted by Kathy on

    I learned to fold towels when i worked in a linens and draperies department in high school. It is a different method of folding, designed to make the towels look attractive and streamlined on shelving. The goal is to have the decorative stripe facing out of the towel, and when you stack the towels, all the design edges flow into the next one down. It may take an extra 2 seconds of refolding to get it in a different position when i put it on the towel bar, but my linen closet looks like it should be photographed and in a magazine.

  16. posted by Paul Nichols on

    We’ve been doing that for years. We always liked the look in the linen closet and on the towel bar. Thanks for the reminder and the photos.

  17. posted by Crystal Jones on

    I worked at an expensive Bed and Breakfast throughout college and we folded our towels the same way (as well as our fitted sheets). I’ve been folding mine that way ever since, and not only do they look great, but it really is a lot easier to put them on the rack and shuffle them around when needed.

    The only downside? My husband refuses to fold towels because he “can’t fold them right.” :)

  18. posted by Glenn on

    Ahhhh, okay. I honestly couldn’t figure out what you were doing with the fitted sheet the other day. I couldn’t make it out from the pictures. The towel makes it easier to visualize.

    Lots of folks posting that they have done it this way forever or that they can’t believe there are people who don’t know how blah, blah, blah… but I have to say
    “Hey, I’m a guy.” I certainly would never have risked the unmanly situation of asking my mom how to fold a sheet or towel when I was growing up. Things have changed in this day and age, but back then I would have felt silly even possessing such knowledge.

    BTW, Erin, your sock drawer looks amazingly like mine – minus the hosiery, of course. :)

  19. posted by Maureen on

    I’ve been folding my towels in 3rds for 35 years. It keeps them neat in the closet. I learned from a small hotel I worked at when i was in high school.

  20. posted by Maureen on

    lol @ Crystals husband!!

  21. posted by Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] | Superstars Of Gaming on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  22. posted by 수건 잘 접기 « Just being myself on

    [...] (via How to fold a large bath towel) [...]

  23. posted by Fold A Bath Towel Efficiently For Easy Storage And Hanging | Lifehacker Australia on

    [...] How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [Unclutterer] Tagged:bathroomfoldinghouseholdstorage [...]

  24. posted by Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] « Tech News on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  25. posted by Web news blog » Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  26. posted by Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] | Key To Eden on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  27. posted by Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] | DodaPedia on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  28. posted by Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] « Coolbeans on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  29. posted by Sean on

    I do not hang my towel folded on the bar.

  30. posted by The Far Edge » Blog Archive » Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  31. posted by EpicTrendz » Blog Archive » Fold a Bath Towel Efficiently for Easy Storage and Hanging [Efficiency] on

    [...] a home organization tip of your own, linen closet related or otherwise? Share it in the comments. How to Fold a Large Bath Towel [...]

  32. posted by Produktive bokmerker for uke 28 – 2009 | BetaGeek.no on

    [...] How to fold a large bath towel – Unclutterer – Organisering: Kunsten å brette håndklær skikkelig er ikke bare nyttig av utseendemessige årsaker, men like mye på grunn av plassbesparelse. Ved å brette effektivt kan du få inn flere håndklær på samme plass, samtidig som at det ser bedre ut. Slå den! [...]

  33. posted by EngineerMom on

    We hang our bath towels mostly on hooks (an over-the-door hook for me on the closet just outside the bathroom, one in the bathroom for hubby – there wasn’t room for more than one hook where his is), so how they’re folded only matters for storage in the linen closet.

    I’ve never understood the obsession with folding towels in thirds. My mom always just folded ours in half, then in half the long way, then folded up like the last two pictures. This worked great, plus when you put a “folded in half” towel on the rack, you can actually USE it!

    One other thing – my MIL is totally obsessive about folding her towels like shown above, yet they only have hooks for bath towels, and when she uses smaller towels (to dry her face after washing it at night, for example), she just stuffs it back on the bar, without folding it and hanging it neatly. She does the same thing with washclothes, then complains she has to use a clean one every time she washes her face (morning and night). If you hang things up neatly, they’ll dry and can be reused a couple of times before washing! So why the obsession with neatly folding the towel in thirds for the closet?

  34. posted by WilliamB on

    EngineerMom: putting on my economist’s hat, my assessement is that the reason that thirds is considered nice is that it’s harder. Think of it as a bit of conspicuous consumption – in this case, consumption of time.

    Towels. Ah, an interesting subject. I am clueless about towels, or so I’m told. I still argue with a certain friend about whether a washcloth is a towel or not. (It is, right? Back me up here.) For my use, I have two sets that are exactly the same. They have to be folded thirds longway, then quarters shortway in order to fit into the closet space. This has nothing to do with hanging them up – I have hooks in my bathroom.

    My kitchen towels are folded as they’re hung, thirds then halves. This has the dual advantage of getting them to fit their space and easy to grab and hang.

    I love having guests so I have 3-4 sets of guest towels, each set a different color so the guests don’t get their towels mixed up. For those to fit in their space, it’s quarters longway then thirds.

    Sounds a bit psycho, doesn’t it? But as a result they’re easy to get to and in good shape. The sets I have, even my daily use towels, have lasted a deceade and going strong.

  35. posted by lucy bird on

    They look so good! was it really difficult to do? I have actually just bought them some new bamboo bath towels, made from bamboo, so soft and lovely. I’m gonna get myself a dressing gown too. you must be able to fit so many towels in small spaces! genius!

Comments are closed.