How to Fold Fitted Sheets and Other Bedding Storage Tips

Properly folded sheets are easier to organize and store, and remain delightfully wrinkle-free until you put them on the bed. Explore our guide to find step-by-step instructions for folding flat and fitted sheets, as well as tips for storing sheets and other bedding.

Simple Steps To Perfectly Folded Sheets

Wondering how to fold bottom or top sheets? All you need are a flat surface—a table, mattress, or even the floor will work—and the sheets themselves.

How to Fold a Fitted Sheet (The Easy Way)

The best way to fold a fitted sheet is to tuck all the elastic corners inside each other, shape the sheet into a rectangle, and then fold it in thirds. It’s easier than it sounds, we promise. Below we show and describe two methods that will have you folding a perfectly folded sheet in no time:

Stand and hold the sheet inside-out. Put your hands inside the top two corners and bring them together.

Fold one top corner over the other. Now the visible corner at this end of the sheet is right-side-out.

Do the same to the two corners at the other end of the sheet.

Now there are two visible elastic corners. Put your hands inside those and bring them together. Fold one over the other as before.

Lay the fitted sheet on the floor or bed. Fold any excess material toward the center to form a rectangle.

Fold the rectangle in thirds to produce neat edges. If you don’t like it in thirds, you can try quarters or even halves.

How to Fold a Flat Sheet (The Really Easy Part)

Flat sheets are easier to fold than their fitted counterparts. Follow these step-by-step instructions for a neat, compact fold:

Working from the long edge of the sheet, grasp the top two corners of the sheet and fold them toward each other until both short edges meet, ensuring the corners and edges are perfectly aligned.

Turn the sheet 90 degrees and fold in half again.

Turn the sheet another 90 degrees and fold in half again, and then once more, to make a long rectangle.

Fold the ends to the center, then fold the entire bundle in half. This way of folding in quarters ensures that no edges are on the outside of the bundle.

QUICK TIP: Smooth the sheets between each fold to ensure they stay wrinkle-free in storage.

Bedding Storage & Organization

The best way to store sheets and bedding is often a matter of personal preference as much as it is practicality, but certain methods stand the test of time. Read on for ideas for organizing and storing bed sheets in your linen closets—and some tips and tricks for if you lack closet space.

stack of sheets

Organizing Sheets and Bedding in a Linen Closet and Beyond

When storing sheets, quilts, duvet covers, and comforters, keep them away from moisture, dust, and bugs and ensure air circulation to prevent mold and mildew. In the linen closet and beyond, folding everything neatly is a key first step in keeping your storage spaces organized.

Here are some more smart tips for how to store your sheets and other bedding:

  • Use the pillowcase. Fold the sheets and one pillowcase and stack them. Slide this stack inside the second pillowcase, folding the extra fabric back over itself to create a bundle of sheets.
  • Use bins. Baskets or bins are an easy way to separate sheets by room, size, pattern, or any other preference to keep the closet looking neat. If you sort sheets by room, tuck the bin on the top shelf of each closet to free up space for other bedding in the linen closet.
  • Hang sheets. Follow the sheet folding steps above, stopping before you reach the final folds, then drape your sheet set through a clothes hanger. Hang all your sheets in one closet, or in the closet of each room.
  • Think beyond the closet. No linen closet? Allocate space in your bedroom furniture for storing linens—the bottom drawer of a dresser, a trunk at the foot of the bed, or a decorative box on a bookshelf are all convenient options.
  • Go beneath the bed. If you’re short on shelf space, bulkier bedding can be stored underneath your bed. Protect quilts, comforters, and blankets from dust and mildew by storing them in a cotton bag that also allows air to circulate and moisture to escape.

QUICK TIP: When it comes to saving space in the linen closet, look at how you fold your sheets. Depending on your space, a compact tri- or quarter-fold method may fit better on the shelf, freeing up room to store other bedding and linens.

How to Keep Sheets Smelling Fresh

Whether you’re storing sheets in a closet, trunk, or drawer, here are some simple tips for keeping your sheets smelling fresh between uses:

  • First in, first out. To ensure no set of sheets sits too long, put freshly laundered sheets on the bottom of the stack or bin, and always pull from the top when changing sheets.
  • Leave room to breathe. Overstuffed linen closets prevent air circulation, which can result in musty-smelling sheets. Store sheets with a little wiggle room and they’ll smell fresh, longer.
  • Freshen up. Fight odors by keeping an herbal pouch or diffuser in the closet, or tucking a cotton washcloth with a few drops of essential oils into your storage space. 

Folding and storing sheets and other bedding doesn't have to be a hassle. With our easy-to-follow folding instructions and organizational hacks, your linen closet will be neat and tidy. For more tips and tricks, explore our other Guides.