How to Fold Clothing and Towels

Bring a welcome sense of order and harmony to your closets and drawers with these practical, easy-to-follow suggestions for folding clothing and towels.

Folding Untailored Shirts

Choose one of these methods for folding untailored shirts. Depending on your personal preference, comfort with the techniques, and available storage, one is likely to better fit your organization style and offer you the most practical folded shape for your situation.

The draped fold:

Fasten buttons and closures.

Hold the shirt by the shoulder seams near the neck seam, with the front facing you.

Fold the sleeves and sides back so the sleeves meet in the middle of the back.

Drape the sleeves so they lie flat along folded edges.

Fold the garment from the top to bottom either in half or thirds, depending on desired finished shape.

The flat fold:

Place the shirt front down on a bed or tabletop.

Smooth wrinkles by gently pulling at the seams, making the shirt slightly taut.

Fold each side in along a line at the outer edge of the collar or neckband, toward the center.

Smooth the sleeves.

Fold in half by bringing the bottom edge to the neck or collar.

See It In Action: How to Fold a Shirt

Give dress shirts a crisp, retail-ready look with these easy folding techniques.

Folding Slacks or Pants

Use one of these folding methods to keep your slacks in ready-to-wear condition and your closet or drawers orderly.

The creased fold:

Line up seams and hems to keep the creases crisp.

Hold upside down by bottom hems; match inseams to the outer seams, keeping the crease sharp.

Fold in half onto a pants hanger or in thirds to place in a drawer.

The smooth fold:

Hold pants by the waistband, and shake them to smooth large folds.

Lay pants on a flat surface with the seams on each leg parallel, pulling seams gently until slightly taut.

Fold one pants leg over the other, matching and smoothing seams.

Fold garment in thirds lengthwise to fit in a drawer or fold in half to drape over a hanger.

Folding Towels

The first method leaves towels ready for placement on towel bars with just a quick grab. The second technique helps prevent extra wear along the towel-bar crease by changing the fold for storage.

The towel-bar fold:

Fold towels lengthwise to half their width.

Fold into thirds to stack.

The wear-reducing fold:

Fold towels in half with short ends together.

Fold in half again, short ends together.

Fold in half a final time for storage. If a more compact shape suits your storage space better, fold the towel in thirds instead of in half on the last fold.

More: How to Wash Towels

See It In Action: How to Fold a Towel

Learn how to fold a bath towel -- for a fluffy stack or to be hung on a towel rack -- with these handy tips.

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