Posts tagged home organization
From Tees to Tea Towels: An Exploration of File Folding

File Fold (v.) The act of folding clothes and linens to “stand on end” in a line, one item behind another.

House of Turk | FIle Folding Girls Clothing

If you made it through January without file folding something in your house I’m going to assume you live on a tiny island in the middle of the sea with no access to Netflix. Marie Kondo’s wildly addictive series Tidying Up has us all talking about organization and I can’t say I mind it. And while her whole concept isn’t new, this recent spotlight on the KonMari Method now has people file folding their lives and talking about it with their friends.  I don’t subscribe to every detail of Marie Kondo’s method of organizing, but I am a fan of file folding and will share with you my top five reasons why file folding is actually a really good idea.  Before we get started, I want to stand with the critics in the room who may be thinking this whole file folding situation has gone too far. “Who has time for this!” or “This is never going to stay this way!” is what you might be thinking. You are not (completely) wrong. You’ll be happy to know that for the most part (because there are always exceptions) I will not file fold the following items unless together we decide that it actually works for your lifestyle: 

  1. Your thongs. (Yes, I said thongs. You are either mortified right now or completely delighted.) No exception here, really. I like to use drawer organizers like this or this to hold these, without having to fold each one.

  2. Socks - Kids, ankle or no-show. I prefer folding one into another vs. file folding because they are more likely going to stay together that way, especially if your laundry basket is the hoop during a game of laundry basketball (She fades back, she shoots, she scores. You get the picture). For families with young kids, this is simply more practical.

If we work together it is probably because you do not have the time, resources, or will power to do this yourself. I will not put the expectation on you to file fold these items in your closet after I leave. Baby steps. Organization is not a one time thing. It’s truly a lifestyle and I don’t want you spending your precious time folding your unmentionables.

I digress. 

Below are my top five reasons why file folding everything from tees to tea towels is always a good idea:

House of Turk | File Folding Tee Shirts.jpg
  1. You see EVERYTHING.  Nothing is underneath something else, but instead in a nice straight line like a kindergarten class going to recess.

  2. You can FIT MORE in the same space. Think about your tee shirts. If you fold them and stack them you are only utilizing the height of the drawer which often times is the shortest measurement of that space. File folding gives you the opportunity to take advantage of the depth or sometimes width of the drawer, certainly a much greater distance on average. MATH! 

  3. Over time, you will be able to EASILY weed out items you don’t need / use. Let’s use dish towels as an example. You have one drawer with file folded towels front to back. You use one, two, maybe three at a time. Then you do laundry. You put them back in the front. You do this over and over and realize that the 5 towels in the back haven’t been touched in a year and can probably go. Thank you, bye.

  4. Visual clutter is reduced. Admittedly, I honed my folding skills doing visual merchandising for J.Crew for five years. I am going to share my tips on folding in an upcoming blog, but for now be confident in knowing that after folding one or two loads of laundry in this method, you will get the hang of it. The best part is that there isn’t one way to file fold. The folding really depends on the size of your clothes or linens and the size of the space they are going in. Once you find your file folding rhythm you will notice that your drawers look amazingly less like an unfolded pile of laundry and more like a tidy line up of your favorite items.

  5. Of all of the folding / hanging systems, I find file folding to be the easiest for all family members to maintain. My three year old ONLY wears athletic tee shirts (I pick my battles). If I fold and stack them in the drawer two things happen - 1) I can’t close the drawer and 2) the piles are destroyed in one day because he digs to find the perfect shirt for that particular day. When the same shirts are file folded, and I have watched him do this, he opens the drawer, pauses as he looks at each one and pulls out just the one shirt he wants to wear. Yes of course it doesn’t look picture perfect all the time, but if my three year old can keep it tidy I assure you ANYONE CAN. For wider drawers that allow for more than one row, use drawer dividers or drawer organizers to keep everything in its own lane.

Start with one room. Or one drawer (again, baby steps). Get the whole family involved when you have that huge pile of unfolded laundry on your bed and you can’t go to sleep until it’s folded.

Until next time,

Rittenhouse Apartment Closet Design

House of Turk x I Believe in Pink

When I first talked with Amy of I Believe in Pink she asked me if her tiny Rittenhouse apartment closet was worth my time. Girlfriend. The answer is always yes. Every space, large or small, can use organization and style. A teeny tiny closet is no exception. Also, Amy is in PR and Influencer Marketing for Lilly Pulitzer and runs an upbeat fashion and lifestyle blog, so you can only imagine the amazing wardrobe that lives in that 3’ x 6’ space. OMG.


I snuck down to the city (I live it in ‘burbs, folks) to meet Amy and her closet. We chatted, sipped seltzer, took dimensions and I shared with her a quick vision of the space. I know what you are thinking. “A vision? Really? It’s just a closet.” I beg to differ. Each day you present yourself to the world in the clothes from your closet. You open the door or walk-in, stand there, and choose something to put on your body. At days end, you go back to that same place. Maybe you even pull out another outfit to wear. You go to sleep and the cycle begins again the next day…and the next. Every single day you enter that space at least twice. You and that closet are besties, like it or not. I would argue that this space can influence how you approach your day. A hot cup of coffee, a trip to your boutique-like closet organized and ready for you, and you are on your way to feeling great before you ever step out the door. In a very real way, closet organization is a form of self-care. It takes the anxiety out of getting dressed every morning, because you can SEE and KNOW what is in there. You are celebrating those pieces that you selected at one point or another and the way you felt when you bought them. No guessing. No struggling to find. No sitting in your towel for an hour because you just simply CANNOT. You and your closet are worth it.

After our consultation, we scheduled the project for the following week. I did all of my shopping beforehand (not always the norm, but nice when it happens). The Container Store, Amazon, and Target are my go-to’s for product. I definitely have my favorites, but each space and client is different and I pick product accordingly. On the day of the project, I loaded up my Atlas and headed into the city. One of my best friends, Rachel, was kind enough to be my assistant for the day. The entire project took a total of 10 hours, which included removable wallpaper installation. I went back the next day to label and put finishing touches on the design.

First, we took everything out of the space. Rachel started sorting the contents of the closet by category, type, color, etc. Meanwhile, I got started on the wallpaper. I took measurements again (measure twice, cut once!) and I cut the wallpaper to size. Removable wallpaper is essentially contact paper for your walls. It has zero give once it is stuck to the wall so precision is key. Word to the wise - this was a small space, I had Rachel to help, and I have basic knowledge of wallpaper installation. For larger projects, I would subcontract this work out.


House of Turk | Closet Organization, Walls (before)


House of Turk | Closet Organization, Walls (After)

After the wallpaper was in, I placed the product. Since all of Amy’s belongings are in her room and closet, we needed to incorporate additional storage for stationary, office supplies, and miscellaneous items like cords and candles. Taking advantage of the full height of the closet allowed room for all of those things plus additional clothing to start transitioning into spring (YES, PLEASE). After the product is in, the fun part begins. Rachel and I took all of the sorted items and placed them in their new homes in this gorgeous little space.

House of Turk | Closet Organization, Over door shoe rack
House of Turk | Closet Organization, Stacking Shelves with Baskets

Luxe Acrylic Collator | Bin Clips

The white stacking shelves were a great multipurpose solution for the bottom of the closet where we needed to store a variety of items. I also love the water hyacinth / gold bin clip combo which complemented the baskets Amy already had in the space. The acrylic collator was the perfect place for thinner clutches and pouches. I would guess that Amy had well over 30 bags of all types in this closet at one point!

Closet organization top shelf after
House of Turk | Closet Organization, Document Boxes
House of Turk | Closet Organization,  Shoes
House of Turk | Closet Organization, Wall Hooks with Wallpaper

Document Boxes (similar) | Wall Hooks

By adding these acrylic stacking sweater bins, Amy now has a place for her sweaters in the winter and tees and shorts in the summer. We added items that she isn’t using frequently at the top. Amy is 5’0” tall, so a step stool is pretty critical here. And because mixing metals is encouraged, these document boxes with copper detail were perfect for Amy’s stationary, office supplies, and back stock of gifts (because her heart is as gold as this geometric print wallpaper).

House of Turk | Closet Organization, Display Shelves
House of Turk | Closet Organization, Command Shelves

To utilize wall space outside of the closet for additional clutches and pouches, command shelves were added for these display-worthy pieces.

Amy is SO much fun and now so is her closet. I am thrilled to have been part of this transformation and see my design come to life in her space.

Until next time,