What's the secret to packing clothing?

Tips and tricks for packing clothes for a move 

It seems like everyone has a different opinion on the best way to pack clothing. If you ask friends and family for their advice, you’ll probably hear to roll items rather than fold them, use packing cubes to stay organized and keep clothes on hangers. All of these can be great suggestions, but the best approach depends on whether the garments are folded or hanging, and if you’re taking them with you in a suitcase or putting them in the moving equipment. Let’s take a look. 

Placing shoes and other clothes in a suitcase


Two options for packing folded items 

You can put folded clothes in boxes or keep them in the drawers they’re already in. To use boxes, simply line the bottom of a box with packing paper and fill it with neatly folded stacks. Pack tightly to maximize space and so things don’t shift during transit. Tape the box and label it as clearly as possible — no need to hunt through boxes of winter coats if you’re looking for pajamas after move-in. 

Want to keep your clothes in drawers? That works, too! If the drawer isn’t heavy, wrap plastic wrap around the top of the drawer and slide it back inside the furniture after it’s loaded in the moving equipment. For heavier drawers, wrap the whole thing and move it separately.  

Note: Wood furniture will need to be wrapped in a layer of paper padding under the plastic wrap to keep it protected.  

How to pack your hanging clothes 

Wardrobe boxes are the best way to move hanging clothes, and they’re super easy to use:  

  • Assemble the box, using packing tape to secure the seams 
  • Place the hanging bar into the pre-cut grooves 
  • Put items like shoes, belts and purses in the bottom of the wardrobe box to maximize space 
  • Hang clothes on the bar 
  • Close the box and tape it shut 

Tip:  Hold on to wardrobe boxes after the move — they're perfect for storing off-season clothing or displaying clothes at a garage sale. 

Curious about the garbage bag trick? 

You may have seen people use trash bags to move hanging clothes, but this isn’t a tip we recommend. Unlike wardrobe boxes, trash bags are not designed to protect your clothes. This means you’ll likely wind up with wrinkled belongings that smell like plastic. And because garbage bags can easily rip, your clothes could get damaged as well. Purchasing wardrobe boxes will keep your clothes protected and help you avoid a lot of unnecessary laundry.  

The best way to pack clothing in a suitcase 

Suitcases are great for traveling or taking clothes with you during a move. And with a few tricks, you can fit quite a bit into your luggage: 

  • Place small items in pockets. They’re great for undergarments, socks and other small pieces.  
  • Pack shoes in the corners. Place the heels in the corners, so the shoes sit toe-to-toe.  
  • Place odd-shaped things between the frame. Umbrellas, phone chargers and hats will all fit here to create a flat layer on the bottom. 
  • Roll tightly. Depending on the bag and what you’re taking, it may help to roll items rather than fold them. 
  • Use packing cubes. These will help keep things organized and will fit neatly inside your suitcase. 

We’re here to help! 

Packing can be an intimidating task, but it gets easier once you know what to expect. Check out our packing tips and how-to guides to learn how to pack every item in your home and get advice on timing, what supplies you need and more.  

Have specific questions? Leave us a comment below and we’ll be happy to help.