Organizing Ideas for Your Linen Closet 

Create a linen closet that doesn’t drive you crazy or have you dodging from falling pillows stuffed inside. Maximize your closet space with these linen closet organization ideas no matter how narrow it is.

Once you’re done reading, you will have created a whole different space that looks bigger than before. How to organize your tiny linen closet so it can hold all your things neatly.

how to organize a linen closet

Do you find yourself frustrated with your linen closet being constantly messy and stuffed full of large items? If so, you’re not alone.

Linens, towels, toiletries, and other bathroom supplies can be tricky to keep organized in this small area. Add to that the fact that not all homes have a separate area just for housing these things; streamlining your bathroom tools can be a bit tricky.

Even our home is lacking a linen closet, and that means that over the years, our large family needed to find a space and a layout that keeps our bathroom tools contained.

Stack of fresh towels on table in bathroom, closeup

Today I am going to share with you my best tips on how you can find room either in your bathroom or other area in your home, along with ways to organize each category you plan to store there.

How do I maximize space in my linen closet?

To make the most of the space you have in your linen area, use these tips.

  • Store sheet sets inside of a pillowcase.
  • Roll towels and store them vertically in a basket.
  • Install door organizers for additional space.
  • Put command hooks on the side walls for hanging extra items.
  • Keep cleaning supplies in a caddy.
  • Put deep baskets on the floor to hold toilet paper and tissues.

What can you use if you don’t have a linen closet?

If you do not have a linen closet in your home, look to other areas for bathroom storage.

Idea #1. Use the area below the sink. Install pull-out drawers to make the most of this limited space.

Idea #2. Use a top shelf in a nearby closet. Sturdy baskets can help you to contain like items together. Be sure to use labels.

Idea #3. Use space under a bed in a guest bedroom. Roll carts are a great way to utilize this space efficiently.

When streamlining the tools you use in your home, sometimes you need to think outside of the box. Remember, it’s your home and that means you get to decide what you will store where. Walk the rooms near to your bathroom and see if there are any areas you can turn into your linen closet.

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Tips for organizing a linen closet:

Here are a few easy tips that you can use to help organize a functioning linen closet.

  1. Use bins or baskets to keep things together more efficiently. You can use a basket for each category. Things like cleaning supplies, paper products, hair care, teeth, and lotions, are great ideas to start with.
  2. Don’t try to stuff everything in; instead, declutter and only keep a reasonable supply. It is better to have an organized linen closet with fewer supplies than a cluttered, messy closet where it is impossible to find what you need.
  3. Fold your linens in a way that gives you more space. Tuck sheet sets into one of the pillowcases.
  4. Don’t keep unnecessary items. If you haven’t used it or needed it in a year, that is your clue that you can let it go.

Pick and choose the best ideas that you can then incorporate into an organized linen closet that is easy for you and your entire family to stick with.

D/M PRO TIP: When possible, stick to bins that are easy to see just what is inside. This is especially helpful if you want to get your family on board with your new organizing system! Keep it easy for everyone to see just what is inside so things stay where they belong, and another space in your home stays neat and clutter-free.

linen closet with baskets of towels and bathroom supplies

Modern Chic Linen Closet 

Prep Your Closet Space

Before you can organize, let’s first to a bit of prepwork.

Step #1. Sort and Declutter

Go through your linens and clean out any items that haven’t been used in a while or are stretched out or worn down. You can donate worn items to your local pet shelter or pass on better items to a friend or family member that may need them, such as a new homeowner or college student. 

Step #2. What is Staying

Go through the items that you plan to keep in your linen closet. For this project, it is best to have a large area for sorting, such as a bed or a kitchen table.

Take each item that you are keeping and sort it into categories. If you find old linens that haven’t been washed in a while, put them into the wash so they are fresh and clean. It’s always best to organize with clean and fresh-smelling items, do a quick smell test to help you know what to launder and what is good to put back. 

What categories are there for bathroom items?

  1. Towels
  2. Sheets/linens
  3. Hair care
  4. Face care
  5. Skincare
  6. Cleaning
  7. Paper products

Step #3. Prep Your Area

Before you start to put things back, this is a great time to do a quick clean of the space. I find it is always easier to clean an area that is empty and takes just minutes. Wipe the walls, shelves, the door, and sweep the floor to ensure you are starting with a clean slate.

towels folded on a shelf. laundry basket on the bottom

Small Space Organization

Step #4. Gather your supplies

Keep in mind the type of shelving you have in your linen closet and compare it to the items you have sorted out in step #2. This will better help you to choose the best organizers for the job.

When choosing the best tool to organize for each area, be sure to look at the item. If it’s heavy and liquid, plastic will work best. If it’s material, you will want to stay away from wicker to reduce snags.

  • Storage bins for holding towels, sheets, or blankets. These can be whatever size you prefer depending on how you decide to organize the closet. 
  • Plastic totes to hold cleaning supplies.
  • Baskets to hold soaps and other miscellaneous items.
  • Shelf liners to make a more decorative space. Use the peel-and-stick liners for solid shelves and use the plastic liners for wire shelves. (You can put a shelf liner on top of the plastic liner for decor)
  • Add in closet scents to freshen up your closet and make it smell great all day long. 
a linen closet of organized shelves with folded towels and baskets of soap

Beach Themed Linen Closet 

How to Organize Your Linen Closet.

Now that you are done with the prep work, it’s time to organize an efficient linen closet.

Step 1: Make a Plan

Take a look a the space you have to work with. Decide what will go where. If you are not sure, keep this tip in mind. If you use it often, keep it close; if you use it sporadically, store it further away.

Step 2: Use containers

Use containers that work best for each type of item you will store inside.

  1. Plastic bins – these work great for bottles, jars, and small items, such as combs or toothpaste.
  2. Deep baskets – these work great for items you have a lot of, such as toilet paper or tissues.
  3. Lined baskets – these are great for linens, towels, or washcloths.
  4. Baskets with handles – these are great for cleaning supplies.

Step 3: One shelf at a time

Set up each shelf working on one at a time. Place your first container on the shelf and put the items inside. Continue with the next container until the entire shelf is completed.

Make sure your linens are folded or rolled to save space. You can fold them nicely to lay flat or roll them up and place them in the bins. Wrap your pillowcases into the sheets or place all smaller linens inside of appropriately sized baskets. 

Next, take a step back and see if the layout makes sense and is easy to use. If so, create a label for each container so you know what belongs where. This will help you to keep your linen closet neat and organized going forward.

Woman in warm bathrobe is placing basket of rolled cotton bath towels on wooden shelf of linen closet together with bed sheets, blankets, duvet and vase against white brick wall.

Step 4. Label Everything

Be sure to put labels on every container you use. This is a huge clutter-free tip many people skip over. Labels remind you and your entire family as to what belongs where. This will keep items in the containers where they go and ensure this area stays mess-free and organized.

organize narrow linen closet

Narrow Space Organization

Step 5. Let it ride

Not every setup works the first time around. That is why it is important to test before you finalize. Once you have your linen closet organized, let it stay that way for a week or two. Check on it routinely to be sure things are staying neat. If you find items not being put away, this is a clue that your first attempt isn’t working.

Try a new layout and give it another week. Keep doing this until you find a setup that works.

The key to an organized linen closet is to reduce as much volume and mass inside. Large items should be placed in large bins at the bottom of the closet, and items you use less frequently do best stored at the top. Finally, keep smaller items inside bins and label everything.

I hope this guide on linen closet organization is the help you need to set up this important space in your home.

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  1. I like to have the sheet sets and one pillowcase inside the other pillowcase. That way everything is together and you just pull it out without having to hunt for the set.

  2. Great ideas!
    I have a 1945 house, and there are exactly 2 closets…small in the 2 downstairs bedrooms. No linen, just an alcove for coats….poor me!!! LOL!
    I’m still saving this as there are some nice ideas here.
    I eventually plan to remove the old huge tub: 69″ compared to I believe 62″ for modern tubs… which will give me another 7 inches to add to about 4 inches that I plan to have a narrow open shelf installed. Eventually. I don’t even have a bathroom counter!!! I have a very narrow opening on either side of the sink, one about 8″ one about 30″ that I have put a narrow plant stand and hallway table, open on the bottom that I have a shelf with mesh baskets for towels and under it a short rectangle basket that holds my bath rugs.
    My kitchen linens are stored in a tall drawer…
    bedroom linens are stored in Hope chests…If you’d like pictures, I could send some for those readers who have horrible storage options like me!!!

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