Whether you change out throw pillows every season or need to store extra bedroom linens for guests, itís important to know how to properly care for and store extra blankets and pillows. Without proper care, pillows and linens will end up looking rumpled and old much more quickly than they otherwise would if stored properly. Fortunately, keeping these items fresh isnít as difficult as you might think if you institute a smart storage system.
Storage System Options
If you donít have a spacious linen closet, it is not difficult to devise a system that effectively protects and hides extra pillows and linens, and many people have come up with clever and attractive ways to store these items. Following these suggestions is a list of mistakes to avoid. Be sure to read to the end to make sure your pillows and linens are protected.
If you have space for a stylish bench, why not choose one that includes some extra storage space? These benches are often made out of cedar or other high quality wood that will keep your linens and pillow smelling fresh.
White storage boxes are an attractive option for keeping pillows and linens contained. Even better, by using a variety of sizes and shapes, you can store the boxes in various places around your home. Be sure to clearly label each box, however, since you canít easily see what is inside.
Plastic storage bins
If you have space, large plastic containers are one of the best ways to store pillows and linens because they protect your belongings from being crushed or damaged. Low, flat containers can be slipped under beds to maximize space.
Baskets are perhaps one of the most attractive options for storing linens, which means that you can display them openly as a part of your home dťcor. However, they donít provide quite as much protection for pillows and linens since they canít be closed.
Mistakes to Avoid
With each of these storage systems, there are several key problems that must be avoided at all costs, including the following mistakes:
Forcing pillows to fit into a container
It is no surprise that if you squish your favorite new throw pillow into a container that is simply too small, they are going to come out looking old and wrinkled. If your pillows have zippers, you might want to carefully unzip and remove the pillow insert. You can then store the cover flat so that it will not crease and the insert can compressed into a separate container with other less delicate items. Donít forget to tag your inserts so that you know which pillow cover it corresponds to. Consult our guide on how to stuff a pillow cover to make sure you donít damage the zipper or seams when unstuffing or stuffing your pillows.
Storing Linens in Warm, Moist Places
The ideal storage space should be relatively cool and dry with a stable temperature. Avoid storing linens in attics, garages, damp basements, or closets with external walls that may affect temperature. Failing to do so may result in mold and mildew, and infestations from common household pests.
Sealing linens in plastic bags that are not vacuum bags
If you put your pillows and linens in sealed bags you run the risk of condensation occurring within the bag, particularly if they are stored in a room that is subject to significant changes in temperature. If you want to use plastic bags to protect your covers and you think condensation may be a problem, make a few small holes in the plastic to allow a little air circulation. Vacuum storage bags are great space savers and are safe to use if they are well vacuumed and stored at fairly stable temperatures. However, vacuum packing pillows and linens will result in deep creases and wrinkles that, depending on the fabric and care instructions, may be difficult to remove.
Leaving pillows and linens uncovered
In an unsealed container, linens and pillows will collect dust, but they will also be vulnerable to getting wet or damaged in other ways as well. If you have a cat, you may also be creating an inviting bed for your furry friend. Pet hair, sharp claws and other potential pet problems that we wonít mention here, could really do a number on your linens.
Failing to protect linens from rough surfaces
If you place delicate linens directly in a rough basket or on an unfinished wood shelf they are likely to snag and tear. Line baskets or shelves with shelf paper. There are lots of attractive shelf papers out there, so if your shelving is visible, look for a shelf paper that works with your dťcor.
A Note about Pests
Moths, Carpet Beetles and Silver Fish are three of the most common household pests and they can find their way into almost anything. There are several ways of managing and deterring these pests from getting into your drawers and storage spaces. We recommend that you do a little research to determine what will work best for you, your home and environment. To get you started, here is a great article
from Margaretís Cleaners in Southern California. It includes references if you want to dig deeper and learn more.