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How to Organize a Chest of Drawers and Dresser

Updated: May 3, 2023

  1. Downsize

Start with one drawer at a time unless you are going to change out the categories of items in each drawer. Wipe down the drawer and downsize until each item fits back into the drawer loosely. Donate, sell, or recycle a piece of clothing you haven’t worn in over a year

  1. Categorize

If you took everything out of each drawer then wipe them down and categorize by item. Put all like items with like items. Downsize each category until it fits loosely in the drawer.

  1. Daily wear to seasonal

Items should be put back with top drawer holding your everyday items and last drawers holding your occasional or seasonal items. Here is a new idea; undergarments may be more conveniently stashed in a bathroom. I usually sit on my bed to put on my casual shoes so I have my socks in the bottom drawer in my bedside table. In my dressers bottom drawers I have my sweaters and winter items in cube bin organizers that can be traded out with swimwear and beach items seasonally. All seasonal items are stored in cubed bins to just pull out and put in seasonally. My husband’s chest of drawers is organized much different than my dresser drawers. In my dresser top drawer I have bras, underwear and camisoles. In the second drawer I have Pjs and in the bottom drawer I have seasonal items. In my husband’s right side chest of drawers top drawer he has his everyday utility drawer and personal items, second drawer undershirts and socks, and third is another utility drawer. On the right side the top drawer is underwear and jeans, second drawer casual pants and bottom drawer is shorts and workout clothes. He is organized the way he needs it organized. His swimwear is in a bin under the bed. You can see how I organized my husband’s chest of drawers on Fullerton’s Professional Organizing YouTube channel.

  1. Hang up?

All dressy and bulky items should hang in the closet except for sweaters they should be folded in a drawer or on a shelf. In my closet I have lounge wear and bulky sweats folded in hanging cubes in my closet but I only have 3 drawers in my dresser. My hubby has a large chest of drawers so we have not decided on whether to put his workout clothes in the hanging cubes or his shoes. We are leaning towards workout clothes.

  1. Folding style

I like the Marie Kondo envelope package style but do what works for you the best.

  1. Bins and dividers

Bins and dividers are good and keeping Items together in a drawer and make it easier if you are going with the Marie Kondo way of folding.

  1. Temporary and permanent labels

I label each bin and the inside of the top of the drawer to remember where each item goes. Some family members may need sticky notes on the outside of each dresser until they remember which drawer holds which items.

  1. Top of chest of drawer

Leave a bin or small basket in the top drawer for the things that usually get put on top of chest of drawers for later. The top of the chest of drawers should stay neat as well.

  1. Maintenance

The best system is the one you will use. So arrange your drawers in whatever setup makes it easiest for you to access and put away your clothes. If something’s not working, refine it. You’ll stick to an organization scheme that works for you, so make tweaks to your dresser as you discover how you use it. Maybe it makes more sense to have shirts up top if you don’t mind reaching for socks in a lower drawer, or you prefer underwear and bras paired together in one drawer so you have extra room for other pieces elsewhere. Adjust as you like and make a habit of putting clothes away right as they’re cleaned to keep a harmonized bedroom space.

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