Friday, March 30, 2012

{diy: organized t-shirt drawers}

Oh my goodness, you guys. Do you ever have those moments where Pinterest changes your life? I mean, really. I had (another) one of those moments yesterday.

I found a pin linking to {this post} and all my thoughts about how to organize t-shirt drawers were forever destroyed. I consider myself a pretty orderly person (and I do love organizing a drawer), but this revelation seriously had me yelling, "HOLY CRAP WHY DID I NOT DO THIS BEFORE?!"

The epiphany? Folding t-shirts in a drawer in horizontal rows instead of vertical ones so you can actually see all of your t-shirts at once. I KNOW. CRAZY.

Here's the before and after, once I dumped out my drawers and tried it out:


It's kind of embarrassing looking at the before picture, actually. I swear most of the time it looks better than that... but I get lazy.

So, in case you're not already convinced, here are reasons this technique is awesome:
1. It's ridiculously easier to find the t-shirts you want to wear because you can see all of them at once.
2. You'll start discovering t-shirts you never even knew you had because they've been shoved in the bottom of your drawer so long. (Seriously. It's like Christmas.)
3. You'll have oodles of new-found space that suddenly wasn't there before. (It's like magic!)
4. You'll be able to clean out those old ratty t-shirts you've long forgotten about. (Or turn them into something craftier...)

For me, folding shirts like this is a different method than I'm used to. It's ideal to have the pattern of the shirt facing up so you can distinguish between them. Here's a handy-dandy folding chart featuring my Mt. Washington observatory shirt so you can learn how to organize your drawers, too!


1. Lay out your shirt with the print facing up. (In this case, it's the back of the shirt)
2. Fold the shirt in half length-wise, print still facing up.
3. Fold in your sleeves (this takes an extra fold with long-sleeved shirts)
4. Fold your shirt in half width-wise, with the sleeves tucked inside the fold.
5. Fold one more time width-wise. (In this case I tucked the bottom up behind, in order to best show off the pattern.)
6. Stack shirts in rows in your drawer with the patterned fold at the top.

And there you have it. Can you believe 30 t-shirts only took up half my drawer folded this way, when before I was finding it difficult to close the drawer without shirt tails hanging out?

Sigh. Organized bliss. :)

125 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. I did the same thing!!!! LOL

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    2. Same here! Great pin! One of the best I have pinned.

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    3. I also do this in my underwear drawer

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  2. This is the method I use for organizing our tshirts. I do use a different folding tehnique. And I sort them by color.

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    1. I try to sort mine by color, too, but inevitably it goes from color, style, and season organization to... frequency of use. Basically I just rotate through my five favorite t-shirts at the front. But hey, at least they're easy to find, now! :)

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    2. Do I spy an Achilles tshirt?!

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  3. So glad I saw this on pinterest! I've been on the lookout for a new real wooden dresser though and I was just wondering where you got yours? (:

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    1. We picked it up at a flea market! Usually you can find some great wooden pieces at your local markets. Ours is lovely; my only qualm is that the drawers tend to stick a little.

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    2. Rub a little wax on the drawe slides. They will slide out smooth.

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    3. Thanks; it's on my shopping list! :)

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    4. Crayons work to keep drawers from sticking and are normally laying around the house

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    5. a bar of soap works very well - and smells good!

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  4. I love this idea!
    It's also cool to spot Joe's Clothes in random places!

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    1. Haha good eye! I grew up near Joe's so I have a bunch of souvenirs still hanging around the house. I get all my friends addicted to their giant drink cups! :)

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    2. I noticed the Joes t-shirts as well. Made my day. :o) And.. this is freaking awesome. Just did my drawers AND had extra room. SCORE

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    3. Love Joe's! Way to rep Stillwater! Great tutorial. Following your blog now in Sand Springs thanks to Pinterest!

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    4. I spotted the Joe's shirt, too! I'm from Perkins & went to college at OSU! Matter of fact, I just watch OSU beat TCU! Go Pokes! :)

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    5. That's the first thing I noticed too! Love Eskimo Joes!

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    6. Yay for Eskimo Joe's! Go Pokes!

      Also yay for the organization idea. :)

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  5. Yes ma'am! I'm using 1 right now! I was born in Stillwater and have lived within 20 miles my whole life!

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    1. My hometown, too! Haven't been back for some time, though. I bet it has changed quite a bit since I saw it last...

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    2. It seems like changes happen every day! Some good, but some I could do without.

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    3. I'm an OSU grad, now living in CA. Everytime I go "home" to OK, I have to head to Stillwater. I used to work at Hideaway. :o)

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  6. Mine were too tall this way to fit with the drawer closed =[ trying to figure out a way to fix it now..

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    1. Ended up folding them in half again, fits only 7 across, but not as wide then. & i sadly can't see the pattern as well. At least they all fit nicer though!

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    2. Folding them again would have been my suggestion, too. That, or it's a good excuse to get a new dresser! :)

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    3. Maybe folding that last time in thirds would work, instead of in half twice.

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  7. Oh my goodness - why haven't I ever thought of this? And no more digging through piles to find the shirt you want :)

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  8. Don't they get all wrinked, though, folded so many times?

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    1. They tend to get creases in the them, but no more than folding them in the drawer the other way. I usually take out the one I want and hang it in the shower room to "steam" out the wrinkles in the morning.

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  9. such a simple but helpful diy! did it immediately.

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  10. I organize my undies like this! That's even more fun!

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  11. Thank you SO much for this simple yet brilliant idea! After reading I ran upstairs and reorganized my entire dresser. My previously chaotic and near overflowing drawers now have room to spare. I'm ecstatic!

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  12. Thank you for this idea! Just completed the shirt drawer and decided to reorganize the rest! I'll do hubbies tomorrow! Thanks again.

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  13. All of my problems solved :)

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  14. I love this idea... we've been hanging our clothes and using the dressers for underwear and socks... now there's too many clothes to hang. Great idea, do you know if they pull out easily, or do three or four try to come out with the others? That was my problem when I used to lay them flat in the drawer.

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  15. If you don't pack them too tightly, it's pretty easy to pull out just one (I usually keep my hand on the others, just in case). And they do fall down a little when you pull too many out, but it's easy to fix the stack when you put clean ones back in! :)

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  16. Woo Hoo!! I just did this to my drawers.I took an overflowing drawer and made room for more! Anyone want to go shopping!!

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  17. I love this idea. I just started blogging, but I'm featuring this idea with a link to this page on Monday as one of my favorite pins on Pinterest, I hope that's okay! It will be up on June 25 @ planprepareandprovide.com

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  18. OMG!!! This is the best! Im going out of town soon and it works great for my suitcase. I actually have extra space! I am amazed!

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  19. Um, THANK YOU. This is amazeballs :)

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  20. Absolutely brilliant! It took just minutes to turn my husband's overstuffed disorganized T-shirt drawers into neatly organized spaces with lots of extra space. Thanks a bazillion!

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  21. Going to do this now! I am going to tell ALL my friends about this too. Thanks for the share.

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  22. I saw this and immediately attacked my drawers. I found clothes I didn't know I still had, and now, I can see everything when I open the drawer. Not to mention, I can open the drawer. Thank you so much for posting this!

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  23. Are those two Eskimo Joe's shirts I see?

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    Replies
    1. Yep! Scroll up! Okies have good eyes!

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    2. Pinterest brought me here today! Yay! Look out drawers.

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    3. My Joe's shirts are getting a lot of notice! You guys can spot them from a mile away... way to go! :)

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  24. Genius idea, except when I folded all my t-shirts, they're taller than the height of the drawer, so it won't shut now! Gutted as I thought this would have been perfect for what I needed.
    Will be measuring depth of drawers next time I go shopping.
    Cheers for the tip! :)

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    Replies
    1. Oh no! The curse of shallow drawers! Perhaps you can do an extra fold in your shirts to make them shorter?

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  25. I have always folded my shirts like this anyway, however, I laid them flat. My 8 year old daughter has an over flowing drawer of shirts and as soon as I read this, I went to her room and redid her drawer.....AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks!! :)

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  26. Thank you!!!!! I'm going to do this asap! My t-shirt drawer will now have way more space!

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  27. Just did mine today! I did my own little tutorial on my blog here: http://fightingcomet.blogspot.com/2012/07/getting-organized-clothing-drawers.html

    It makes my drawers so much more organized! I have a TON of room now, and can see everything properly. :)

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  28. Thank you SO much for this simple yet brilliant idea!
    Great blog; happy I found you!

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  29. I found that the folded t-shirts would fall over if you didn't have enough "sandwiched" in the row. So, I experimented and discovered that rolling the shirts (as suggested when packing a suitcase) worked, too. I still ended up stacking the rolled shirts two deep, but it's way better than having a stack of 5-6 shirts folded the regular way (and it would work for shallow drawers, as well)

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  30. LOVE this!!!! I can't wait to use it when I move into a much smaller space for my overflowing wardrobe!

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  31. This just changed my organisational world. Thank you!!

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  32. OMG. We have one chest of drawers and one closet, and I am sick of only having a third of the closet and one drawer to myself because of DH's unending supply of T-shirts! Lifesaver!

    Kate

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  33. I'm actually going to do this...

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  34. Thanks so much! I did it and I have more space.

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  35. Oh I LOVE this!! Thank you for posting :D!! This may actually mean I can get away with NOT buying yet another chest of drawers for our dressing room (makes us sound fancy, it's just that our bedroom has a weird dividing wall in it meaning it's only big enough to take the bed and a couple items in one half, and the wardrobes etc in the other half :D!).

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  36. My drawers are very short so I tried rolling my t-shirts rather than folding (they were too tall then) and it turned out great! Now I can see all my shirts at once!

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  37. My husband tended to wear the same 5 polos. I did this with them and we get along much better. Why I never thought to do this with tshirts, I dunno. :)

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  38. I saw this while perusing Pinterest over my Sunday morning coffee and immediately had to go reorganize my 5-year-old son's t-shirt drawer. (I only had to fold his in thirds because they're smaller.) Now he can see all his shirts without digging through the entire drawer and making a huge mess. Happy day!

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  39. Argh! I love it. Thanks for this. =D

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  40. I did this to all my drawers and the amazing thing everything fits now! I can't believe it and I am so proud of my accomplishment I want to take pictures of my results and post them, but really who wants to see my clothes. :)

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  41. This changed my life...I can FINALLY close my drawers! I even did this with plain ribbed tank tops and it worked beautifully as well. THANK YOU so much for posting this!!!! --Christie

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  42. Do you have a solution to keep the shirts vertical as shirts are removed as worn? I would assume that the rows would fall over as shirts are removed.

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    1. They do fall over a little, but not too terribly. I find that the folded shirts still retain their shape well enough. And I don't usually go through that many t-shirts in a week, so once I do laundry, everything fits fine again.

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    2. I have seen compression bookends, kind of like what a stapler does. You might be able to use one in your drawer, I havent tried this but your question made it come to mind. As you remove shirts, it shrinks to keep them all in place. I think its called an expansible spring-loaded retention bookend. then you could probably make small plastic dividers for between your shirts to make it easier to slide in and out, only the shirt pulled will come out. Just a few thoughts. Put a retention bookend in your drawer and put a piece of plastic between each shirt. then if you make the plastic slightly larger, you could even put labels on them.

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  43. I was seriously at my wits end over our lack of storage space, so much so that I was about to pare our wardrobes down to a fraction of what it is. You just saved our wardrobe from that unfortunate fate! :) Thank-you so much for sharing!

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  44. Just went through my 13 year old son's drawers! Yippee! What a change! Now on to my 15 year old's...

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  45. Omg! I thought i was folding my shirts the best way possible! Thank you thank you thank you !!

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  46. Thank you so much for this! It's so simple, I can't believe I hadn't thought of it sooner, I did my shirt drawer and a variation on my bottoms drawer as well. My husband saw it and wants me to do his drawers too! :) Thanks again! Amazing!

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  47. I love this so much! My neice has so many shirts and her drawers was so small I thought, so I tried this out! Fits perfectly now! Now I just gotta teach her how to fold and put it up this way!

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  48. Oh this is fantastic. I have so much clothes and my dorm room dresser is so tiny! I have almost all of my clothes stored away! WOOHOO.
    This even works for jeans if you fold them in half along the zipper, then half them twice from belt-loop to bottom hem twice.

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  49. I just did this and it's a genius idea! Thanks!!

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  50. I'm seriously like your twin sister lost at birth I am like obsessed with organizing love your post but this 1 makes me love them even more

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  51. how about folding the sleeves in before folding n half...

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  52. great... but... this method will give you a sort of ugly crease right down the front of your shirt... very visible :(
    folding by thirds, like you see in the stores will work, you just have to play around with the way you do the second 1/3 folds.
    for what it's worth..

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  53. I was back in Stw today!! My niece works at Joes clothes! My hometown too :). Thanks for the neat tip!

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  54. I ran to do my son's drawer immediately! Done in 5 minutes. Can't wait until he gets home to find his world upside down!

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  55. How do you guys keep the shirts from falling over and getting messy as you remove shirts from the drawer?

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  56. I already folded my shirts like this, but never thought of putting them on end. Brilliant!

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  57. Do you have any ideas for my underwear drawer? That's what im having a problem with.organization, is a problem, with that drawer. thank you :)

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    1. I'm a fan of IKEA's drawer dividers for underwear. They keep everything nicely organized. I posted about it here: http://www.darkroomanddearly.com/2012/01/organized-drawers.html

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  58. This is perfect! My drawers are always organized.

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  59. Perfect! Also noticed Joes clothes!! Thank you for this amazing epiphany !

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  60. I honestly do not own one single t shirt. What is wrong with me? Mom of triplets and no t shirts? Folded husbands this way and it is brilliant. Thanks!

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  61. I love this idea!! Though I first saw it on Oprah.com, I like how you showed the step-by-step folding of the t-shirts. It really is so much easier to store and find t-shirts this way. And, putting away clean shirts from the laundry is easier, too. Thank you! :) Robin

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  62. Just did this and we love it!! I have three sons and their drawers use to be such a mess because they couldn't find their favorite teez...thank you thank you thank you!!!!

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  63. I do this, but I roll the shirts.

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  64. Loving this!!! Can't wait to do this today!!! Thanks for the tips!!

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  65. Love this! I did my sons drawer and it looks awesome. We shall see how long it stays this way!

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  66. I will definitely be doing this to my son's shirts. I'm hoping it works with pants too

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    Replies
    1. I do this with my shirts AND pants! it works great.

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  67. So this is how the earlier part of my Saturday went. Logged onto Pinterest, saw a bunch of amazing pins - and then I found this one. I immediately stopped pinning - which is something in itself, and started to clean up my drawers - and now my life will never be the same :)

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  68. I just obsessively hang them up...

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  69. I found this on buzz feed. I need to try this

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  70. Finally did this over the weekend and I'm so happy with the results! My daughter's drawers are next. Thanks so much for the idea! :o)

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  71. Sad this did not occur to me before---this is, after all, the very way I learned to fold my white t-shirts in Navy boot camp and the way I still fold my husband's white tees today! Thanks for the reminder :)

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  72. Thank you for sharing this! Such a simple solution and yet it doesn't occur to most of us to change things up. We were resigned to suffering messy T-shirt drawers as our fathers before us, lol.

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  73. Awesome idea, thank you. I went and tried this, brought my drawer from full to 2/3s full. I have them organized by long-sleeve, short sleeve, sleeveless and then by color. The only con I found was if I grab one and end up not wanting it, it is a little bit of a pain to get it back in the drawer without redoing a part of the row.

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  74. Awesome idea, thanks for helping me rediscover all my old tees!

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  75. I hope you don't mind if I share this idea with my friends on Facebook, I'm giving you full credit of course. Thank you for this, it's very useful.

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  76. BRILLLLIANT!!! Thanks for posting this - going right now to get my t-shirt drawer in order at last!! :)

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  77. what if the shirts went strait across the front to see them all, instead of from front to back.

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  78. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  79. I loved the Joes shirts I have about 50!! The majority of my drawer is a rainbow of joes and your folding method worked great!!

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  80. How... they fall here ! Not enough T-shirts maybe...

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  81. Really a creative idea,I must say and i have also found this on http://www.apparelnbags.com/mens-t-shirt-cotton.htm and i was really impressed.

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  82. Love the whole idea but don't like a fold down the middle. Maybe fold the shirt with front facing down, then fold each side to meet in the middle careful to keep the sleeves flat, fold from the bottom up and placing the shirt in the drawer with graphic showing.

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  83. I m really very lazy, but what I have most is tshirts. I love buy tshirt online. so especially I put a closet to hang up the tshirts.

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  84. good to me, it's a mess in my drawer.

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  85. Haha. Sometimes it's the simple things.

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  86. Excellent idea. I'll be able to see all my Tshirts from various Rock concerts in the 70s and 80s....Queen, Styx, Rod Stewart, April Wine, Phil Collins, Billy Joel, Pink Floyd...etc. Some of the bands are still touring. Anyways thanks again for the tip.

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  87. This is simply amazing!!! Currently I don't have drawers, I just hang up all my clothing, but I have to try this when I get to my new apartment (Which will have a dresser) I can't wait for this easy organized way of putting clothes away!!! Thank you!!!

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  88. Hello! I saw this picture on Pinterest earlier this evening, clicked the link to get to here, then flew around my flat re-organising my tshirts in this way! I managed to fit about 3 drawers' worth of tshirts and tops into 2 of them in my chest of drawers (which looks exactly the same as yours - is yours pine?). Oh and if anyone on the outside thinks dong this to one's tshirts is a bit OCD - I have organised mine in this way but also subdivided into general printed tshirts, vest tops, band tshirts, plain black tops, plain purple tops, and black&white stripey tops& tshirts :p Thank you for the inspiraton!

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  89. thanks so much! Just spent an hour refolding all of my shirts. Super nice, now I have room for new shirts!

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