Folding clothes to save space: easy hacks

Folding clothes nice and neatly is a handy skill. Everyone wants wrinkle-free garments that they can pull out of their drawers on those late-for-work days or for last-minute drinks with friends. We also want our clothes folded well to maximise on storage room. Whether it be learning how to fold a shirt for packing a case for work trips away or just general folding techniques to help save drawer space, there are lots of benefits to master the art of folding clothes.

Washing and ironing before folding

Washing and ironing before folding

Before you decide on how to fold a t-shirt or a shirt, you need to prepare them for folding. For fabrics that don’t necessarily require ironing – such as acrylic – make sure they’re properly dry before putting them away in the wardrobe to avoid wrinkles and musty smells. For clothes you need to iron, leave the fabric slightly damp as it makes wrinkles easier to iron


When folding clothes to save space, it’s best to work with items that are freshly cleaned and ironed to ensure crisp, wrinkle-free results. Ironing your clothes after washing them will also make the process of folding shirts and T-shirts easier. In a hurry? Consider the Philips handheld garment steamer handheld garment steamer to speed up the ironing process or to easily freshen up your clothes without getting the ironing board out – you simply hang the item up and let the steam work!

How to fold a shirt to save space

Let’s start with the basics: how to fold a shirt.

Do any buttons up, then place it face-down with the sleeves spread out.

Smooth all creases out.

Fold one side of the shirt in towards the centre and fold the sleeve away from the middle.

Take one sleeve and fold it to the opposite side, back away from the centre, then fold it again towards the shirt’s bottom hem.

Repeat step 3 and 4 with the other sleeve to get a neat rectangular shape.

Fold the bottom of your shirt or long sleeve T-shirt up towards the collar.

To make it even more compact, you may then fold the top of the shirt to meet the bottom and then again. This is the best way to fold shirts to save storage space and to help ensure wrinkle-free tops.

How to fold shirt to safe space

Folding clothes for travel

There is even less room to work with when packing for a trip, which makes folding clothes to save space even more essential. 


The good news when learning how to fold a shirt for packing is that the folding techniques for travel are quite simple. The trick to folding shirts for journeys is to fold the garment as tightly as possible without causing creases. The method is more of a rolling than a folding.

Start by laying the shirt flat on your folding workspace.

Fold one side of the shirt about one-third of the way in and repeat with the other side.

Fold the entire shirt in half and then roll the entire shirt tightly from the bottom up.

how to fold shirt for travel

How to fold a shirt for travel

That has buttons? It can be a bit more challenging, as the buttons can easily cause creasing.

After buttoning the shirt, lay it button-side down with the sleeves out to the side.

Fold one sleeve over to the other side of the shirt and then fold the sleeve up so that the cuff touches the collar. 

Repeat this step with the other sleeve.

Fold the shirt so the edge is slightly over the middle and repeat this with the other side. 

Fold the shirt about one-third of the way up and do this again so that the bottom and top are together. 

Female ironing a dress

If you have a portable steamer, just pop it in your case to take out any wrinkles that do appear.


Learning how to fold a T-shirt or a blouse to avoid wrinkles and save space may feel intimidating at first. But with these helpful tips, you’ll be folding clothes and establishing your own folding techniques like a pro in no time! Practice makes perfect, so use these methods for how to fold a shirt every time you take a load out of the dryer. 

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