One Out-of-Sight Thing You Haven’t Cleaned or Decluttered in a While

published Nov 17, 2020
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Credit: Lana Kenney

Apartment Therapy’s Holiday Cure is your 20-day guide to being comfortable, calm, and in control of a clean space during what can sometimes be a chaotic season. Sign up now (it’s free!) to get at-home holiday ideas delivered straight to your inbox

Household essentials are just that—essentials. Think things like towels and sheets that you need to have around. And you probably like to have them stocked up and hidden away, as much as possible. And then, around this time of year, you might also have some seasonal fabrics to take stock of, like tablecloths and the napkins you only pull out for guests.

It all contributes to this big category of things we call “linens.” And it’s probably been a while since the whole collection was evaluated, decluttered, and cleaned, all together.

So let’s get to it…

Credit: Amelia Lawrence/Apartment Therapy

Day 11: Declutter and wash your linens.

Linens is kind of an amorphous category, and it’s up to you to decide what you want to sort through today. If you have a lot of seasonal linens for entertaining, you may want to focus your energy there. Or if taking a pre-winter audit of your everyday sheets and towels feels like a satisfying way to clean things up for the season, you can stick with that task. Or maybe you want to do both.

Taryn's Tips

The change in season is a good time to take stock of your linens. Rotate your warm-weather bedding out, wash your winter blankets so they’re clean and ready, and donate anything you don’t need any more to an animal shelter.

No matter what you choose, the pre-holiday season is the perfect moment to take stock of your linens: from the sheets and towels that warm up winter nights, to the special once-a-year table linens that come out from the holidays. Today we’ll sort, declutter, and wash them.

  • Sort: Collect all your linens from wherever they’re stored. Dig them out of the closets or unpack the bins. Sort them into piles, putting like with like.
  • Declutter: While you have everything out and sorted, decide if there’s anything you want to part with. Are there old towels you don’t really use anymore? Donate them to an animal shelter. Themed tablecloths your style has grown away from? Gift them or thrift them.
  • Wash: For everything you want to keep, make sure it’s clean before you put it away or use it this year. Spot-treat any stains, and wash musty linens that have been in storage for most of the year.

If you’re someone who rotates their bedding for between the spring/summer and fall/winter seasons, this is a good time to make that switch too. But wash the warm-weather sheets before you put them away—your next-year self will thank you.

More Ways to Participate in the Holiday Cure: