Reader Susan submitted the following to Ask Unclutterer:
OK, this may be a strange question, but it’s one I have not seen addressed anywhere: Where do you put clothes you’ve worn for a short time that are NOT dirty enough to go into the laundry basket or to the dry cleaner’s? I am talking sweaters, blouses, pants, etc. — not underwear.
For instance, I might put on a top & pants for a couple of hours to go to a luncheon, but when I get home I am not going to put those items in the wash (unless I spilled something on them, or they got sweaty due to hot weather, etc.) because they’re still essentially clean, and I can easily wear them again “as is” — but I won’t put them into the drawer or closet with other TOTALLY clean (freshly washed or cleaned) items, because that is an invitation to moth damage, among other things.
In an average week, I might wear several different tops and pairs of pants, but not long enough for any of them to get “dirty” or smelly or sweaty.
My family had no system for dealing with this when I was growing up — we just tended to toss stuff onto a coat-rack in each bedroom, which was far from ideal. For me now, when I take off a piece of “hardly worn” clothing, it gets placed into a neat pile on a chair or ottoman in the bedroom, & then I pull the item out again when I want to wear it. But there must be a better way, and I would love to hear suggestions!
Oh Susan, you have asked such a great question. I think that all of us deal with this issue from time-to-time. Let me start by explaining what it is that I do, and then I hope that others will jump in the comments section and describe how they solve this problem in their homes.
In my closet, I have a Skubb Organizer from Ikea. I have five of the Skubb Drawers in each of the shelves that hold various things (scarves, purses, pajamas, and sweats). The top drawer is labeled for things “Not Yet Dirty.”
You could easily use a dresser drawer in the same way. Once a week, I check the drawer to make sure that something hasn’t gone sour in there. Otherwise, it’s a fairly straightforward system.
Thank you, Susan, for submitting your question for our Ask Unclutterer column.
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