The Care and Keeping of Luxury Linens – Expert Tips on Folding & Storage

In a previous post, we told you everything you need to know about laundering your linens to keep them looking like new for years to come.

But none of that is of any use if you still pull crumpled, yellowing sheets out of the closet. Learning how to store luxury linens correctly is imperative to maintaining their magnificence.

First step? Folding your linens to avoid wrinkling.

Your New Party Trick: Folding Fitted Sheets

The best way to fold a fitted sheet is to tuck the corners into each other and then fold over the sides to make a long rectangle. From there, you can fold it into a neat square. Easy, right? Yeah…not so much. People have been struggling with this area of folding since the fitted sheet was invented. Many just give up and shove a balled up sheet directly into the linen closet. But really, with some good instructions and a little practice, you can conquer this hated task in no time. Here is a great visual:

But learning to fold your nemesis, the fitted sheet isn’t the only skill to master…

Careful storage will not only eliminate wrinkles – it will prolong the life of your linens!

For items that are used frequently, it’s best to have an organized system for storage. There is nothing more irritating than watching a tower of sheets topple when you try to pull something from the middle. Keeping matching linen sets grouped together and organized by room definitely helps. One fun tip we found on Pinterest is to put a set of sheets in one of the matching pillow cases. Stacking up a few of those makes for a quick and easy way to grab what you need without having to reorganize piles!

  • Here are some other storage tips that we’ve picked up along the way:
  • Store linens in a cool, dark and dry spot.
  • Avoid storing linens in the bathroom, as the moisture will lead to mildewing.
  • Don't store your linens in anything plastic, cardboard or cedar. Each emits fumes and acids that can stain or yellow your linens.
  • When storing your linens in a garment bag, use cotton, linen or muslin. Don't use anything synthetic.
  • Place tags on your linens or on the shelves in your linen closet describing the type and size of item you're storing.
  • Place a lavender sachet with your linens to keep them smelling fresh.
  • For long term storage, wrap or insert linens in something breathable to allow air circulation. This could be a cotton or muslin pillowcase, or acid-free tissue paper.

We recommend using three sets of bed linens in rotation: one on the bed, one in the wash and one in the linen closet. This will allow each set a rest from use and a rest from the wash. Always place the linens that have been in storage longest on your bed when it’s time to change the sheets. That way the sets will wear evenly. You should change sheets once a week in normal climates, and more often in hot and humid regions.

But wait – what about bath linens?

They deserve some TLC as well. But the good news is that they are a bit more low maintenance. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Just like new sheets, always pre-wash towels in warm or cool water before using them. This sets the cotton fibers and strengthens your towels for future use.
  • Never use chlorine-based bleach, as it weakens fibers.
  • Avoid fabric softener which dramatically decreases absorbency in towels.
  • Dry on medium heat.
  • For pulled loops, just snip the loop with a pair of sharp scissors. Towels are usually woven, not knitted, so this won’t create a hole.
  • Many products that we use in bathrooms, such as facial soap, creams containing benzoyl peroxide and bathroom cleaners can damage a towel and cause color loss if they come in direct contact. Wash and rinse hands thoroughly before using towels, and if a towel does come into contact with any of these substances, gently washing it with cold water before laundering can minimize the effects.

High quality linens are one of the finer things in life, and definitely worth a little extra time and effort. In fact, we think they deserve the very best – just like you!