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How to Fold a Shirt and Other Clothes

Properly folding clothes can create a great deal more space in your wardrobe or drawers. Have you ever got so frustrated with how messy your drawers are that you end up with an explosion of clothes on the floor? Of course, this isn’t the ideal situation when you’re in a rush to get to work, or need to get the kids dressed as well yourself.

With a bit of organisation, finding an outfit to wear can be a stress-free experience. This article explains several ways of how to fold a shirt and trousers, leaving them as neat and flat as possible.


T-Shirt Folding: The Japanese Quick Fold Method

This tried-and-true secret enables you to fold t-shirts in two seconds. Don’t believe us? It can be a little confusing at first, but with a little practice, you can master this method and impress your friends and family with this “magic” trick! Check out this video to see how it’s done in real-life motion.

  1. Lay the t-shirt flat in front of you, with the front of the shirt facing up. The shirt should lie sideways, with the neck collar to the right and the bottom hem to your left.
  2. With your right hand, pinch the top of the shoulder seam on the shirt’s right sleeve.
  3. With your left hand, pinch the edge of the shirt halfway down the length of the shirt. Your right and left hands should be pinching the fabric in a straight horizontal line.
  4. Holding both pinches, cross your right hand over your left, so the back of the t-shirt is now exposed upwards. Bring the top of the shoulder seam to the bottom edge of the shirt.
  5. Now with your right hand, pinch the bottom edge of the t-shirt along with the top of the shoulder seam. Make sure you are pinching all layers of fabric here.
  6. Now for the inversion! Uncross your hands, bringing the left pinch inside out. Holding the shirt up off the table, and there should be a neat fold between both pinches.
  7. Use the tabletop to fold the shirt into tidy thirds, with the front of the shirt facing up and the neck nicely centered.

Voila - Couldn’t be easier, could it?  


Long-Sleeve Shirt Folding: The Conventional Method

If you haven’t quite mastered the above, you can still fold t-shirts following this conventional method for folding shirts.

  1. If you’re folding a button-down shirt, make sure at least every other button is done up.
  2. Lay the shirt flat in front of you, with the back of the shirt facing up.
  3. Take the left side of the shirt and fold it in, creating a vertical crease that begins before the collar and runs down the length of the shirt.
  4. If this is a long-sleeved shirt, fold the sleeve back, so it is in line with the vertical crease and the wrists of the sleeve are close to the bottom hem of the shirt.
  5. Repeat the same with the right side of the shirt: fold it in along a vertical crease, then fold the sleeve back.
  6. Now bring the bottom of the shirt up, folding it into thirds.
  7. Fold the shirt into the final third and flip it over, so the front is facing up.


Folding Trousers without a Crease

Jeans, sweatpants, sporting bottoms, and other casual trousers are a snap to fold in three easy steps.

  1. Lay the trousers sideways in front of you, with the waist to one side.
  2. Fold one leg down neatly on top of the other. The crotch, where the seams of the fabric come together, should come to an obvious point.
  3. Fold the trousers into thirds along the length of the leg, creating a square that’s easy to store flat.


Folding Trousers with a Crease

Dress trousers need a little extra care to keep a smart appearance.

  1. After drying, trousers should be ironed to maintain a crisp crease down the front of each leg. Starch them for extra crispness!
  2. Follow the above steps, but when folding one leg down on top of the other, make sure to bring the front creases together into a neat line. The crotch of the trousers should still form a point opposite the front crease.
  3. It’s better to hang these trousers on a hanger or fold them in half once (instead of in thirds) to minimise creases.

Following the above steps will leave you with clothes that are neatly folded and easy to stack and store. 

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