How to Pack Clothes for Moving – Smart Ways to Wrap Up Your Closet Without Losing Your Mind

Clothes are one of the first things you think about, no matter whether you’re moving internationally or you’re just going a few blocks away. They can get quite tricky, so learning how to pack clothes for moving is essential if you want to have a good relocation experience. Read on to find out how to pack your closet in the most efficient and time-saving manner.

Don’t let clothes get in your way while you’re changing houses, especially since you’ll have so many things to think about. Though it may seem scary, it is actually easy, and everyone can do it properly if they prepare well and follow some basic rules. So, let’s delve right into the matter.

How Long Before Moving Should You Start Packing?

Packing wardrobe items is one of everyone’s biggest concerns when it comes to relocating. Many questions are roaming in your head, and you are faced with numerous dilemmas such as What is the best way to pack clothes for moving. Though it is a lot of work to pack up your entire life and move it to another place, it doesn’t have to be scary. But you should plan it wisely. It’s not that much about being in a hurry or not; it simply boils down to doing things right. Make sure you calculate your costs, especially if you’re new to all of this and need a moving out for the first time budget. Plan what portion goes to packing supplies and then decide which ones you’ve already got and which ones you want to obtain. After this, you’re ready to learn how to pack clothes for a move using expert moving hacks.

Clothes lying on a bed
Don’t panic. It’s all about good organization

How to Pack Clothes When Moving? Step 1 – Sort Everything Out

First of all, decide what clothing items you are taking with you. Now is the perfect time to clean out your closet. Let’s be real, almost nobody needs everything they have in their wardrobe, but we are often simply too busy to declutter regularly. Don’t miss out on this opportunity because you don’t want to end up breaking your back while carrying all of your old things or paying extra to your long-distance movers.

Give or Donate the Clothing You No Longer Use

Reduce your moving stress and start throwing out as soon as you start dealing with your closet. Things you no longer wear should, by all means, be given to friends and family or donated to charity. If you opt for the second option, look up those where you can schedule a free pick up to save time. Besides, in some cases, the charitable contribution deduction applies, so make sure you look that up too.

Sort by Season Before You Pack

Whether you’re moving to another state alone or you’re preparing for a local move with your whole family, sorting by season will help you to a large degree. By making different piles of warm and summer clothes, you’ll be able to pack more efficiently and organize your wardrobe faster in the new home. Label the off-season things since perhaps you won’t have time to unpack everything at once, and you’ll want to know what you don’t need as soon as possible.

Pay Attention to Special Clothes

Not all clothes are the same, and it’s a real time-saver to have this in mind. Of course, ideally, you’d like to pay enough attention to every single item, but in reality, that is often impossible. Depending on the material and texture, some don’t have to be ironed ever, and some look terrible if you’re wearing them straight out of the closet. The same way, some require extra care when being transferred, whereas others don’t. Make a pile of those you believe need extra time to avoid problems with relocation.

A person going through their closet
First, clean out your closet

Packing Clothes for Moving – Step 2 – Prepare to Pack

Before you get down to the actual packing, it’ll help if you prepare your clothes and decide how you will pack. Start by washing and ironing your closet, and then check what your options are.

Don’t Forget to Wash and Iron

Not many people’s favorite, but it can go a long way in helping you settle in the new home. Washing can help you avoid having to think about stains and some items smearing the others, while ironing can prevent certain things from losing shape. And most importantly, you’ll be ready to take the place by storm once you unpack your fully prepared outfits.

Get Boxes, Moving Bags for Clothes and Suitcases for Packing

Plan what is best for you because not all moves are the same. For local or cross country moving, you might be fine with a regular box or two and totes, especially if you’re not going far away. On the other hand, different rules can apply for international moving. If you’re traveling by plane, you might want to get your suitcases ready, or even duffels which can help you carry a lot of your clothes. And if you’re going by car, consider getting moving bags for garment because these can protect against damage to a large degree. Finally, if you’re using moving services, ask and consult your long-distance moving company about different packing solutions.

Consider Wardrobe Boxes for Moving

Wardrobe boxes can also come in handy if you’re not going by plane. You can easily make one and save precious time and money. It’s cheap and quick, especially if you’re moving to a new city alone and want it only for one person. All you need is a box (almost any you can find will do,) tape, scissors, and a hanger bar or anything that can serve the same purpose. Take a look at the following video if you want to see how it’s made, and get ready to transport your dresses, shirts, or any attire you want.

How to Pack Clothing? Step 3 – Decide on the Best Way to Pack Clothes

Deciding how to pack clothes differs to a degree from determining how to pack plates for moving or how to pack glasses for moving because it requires an extra task. Namely, if you’re not moving clothing items on hangers, you’ll have to fold or roll them before putting them in a box, bag, or suitcase. If you plan on using duffels, rolling is better since it can save you a lot of space in the bag. Here are some tips to help you decide what is the best way to pack your closet.


Folding different items properly can be done in more ways than one. As long as you manage to prevent wrinkles on your clothes and save space, you’re doing a good job. Here’s what you should know about folding specific things:

  • Fold your shirts and T-shirts lengthwise and try to do it in half so that the shoulders are touching (don’t forget to button them up before starting).
  • Fold dresses into a rectangle.
  • Fold your pants and jeans in thirds to maximize on the space.
  • To prevent wrinkles, smooth out your things as you fold as much as possible.


Rolling is another great method, especially if you are pressed for time or not good at folding. Rolling is possible for almost all types of clothes except for those made of very delicate materials. If you opt for this technique, follow these simple steps:

  • When you roll your shirts and T-shirts, first fold the sleeves towards the center and then start rolling from the upper part. Smooth out wrinkles as you do this because if you don’t, they might stay.
  • First, fold your pants in half before you start rolling them from the waist.
  • Fold your skirt into thirds and roll from the waist down. Roll the skirt away from your body, not vice versa.
A wardrobe full of clothes
Deciding on the best packing method is the key

The Best Way to Pack Clothes When Moving – Step 4 – Finishing Off With Bags and Boxes

Once you have decided on your preferred procedure, start putting your things in bags or boxes. If you are moving long distance, consider protective bags or sheets (you can even use the garbage ones) for your most valuable attire. For both bags and boxes, try to put the heaviest items at the bottom and work up to the lightest ones. When packing a bag, try to put what you won’t use soon closer to the bottom so that you can reach out for what you need easily. If you’re packing boxes, take extra time to label them well and try to fill them according to some meaningful categories. Finally, tape them shut to prevent fidgeting. And always remember not to overdo it. If the bag or box is too heavy, there is a higher chance of potential problems arising.

A couple putting things in a box
End the process and make sure you protect your items as much as possible

What Is the Fastest Way to Pack for a Move?

If none of the things mentioned so far seems like the best way to pack clothes for a move in your case because you’re packing against the clock, consider some of these extra tricks:

  • If you’re using a truck or car, move clothes in the drawers. Just tape them well. Sometimes you can even move your entire wardrobe if there’s a possibility to disassemble it and leave the things inside. If you opt for this, ensure it’s 100% feasible before really trying it.
  • Use totes for items that are not bulky. These can be super quick to pack and light to carry. They are perfect for local moves, but perhaps you can also use them when moving long distance.
  • Don’t forget the duffel bag. If you’ve got these, you can put a lot inside effortlessly, and they are famous for their durability.
  • Use ‘the clothing bundles.’ You can pack more things together if they are the same size and shape. Just don’t forget to tie them with a string or rope.
A brown duffel bag on the floor beside a white chair
Duffel bags are great for packing in a hurry

How to Move Clothes – Extra Tips

No matter how you end up packing, don’t forget these because they’ll make your experience much more pleasant:

  • Essentials bag – You’ll be tired after a long day of relocating, and the last thing you’ll want will be to rummage through different piles. Save yourself the trouble and prepare a bag with necessities you’ll need for the first couple of days before you unpack.
  • Put on the bulky shoes and garment if the weather allows.
  • Think about separating shoes from clothes.
  • Check the weather in the new home – to assess whether your estimates were correct.
  • Don’t forget smart outfits, especially if you’re moving without a job. You never know what interviews are around the corner.
  • Think about your pets – If you’re moving with pets, make sure they are provided for in terms of clothing too. For example, if the new place is cold and you’re leaving in winter, dogs need to have their jackets ready from the word go.
A girl with a notebook sitting and thinking
An essentials bag is a must

Is It Worth Paying for Packing When Moving?

Finally, the best way to move clothes will ultimately depend on you, the size of your move, and the time you’ve got on your hands. If you’ve got the enthusiasm and the time to read different tips and hacks and educate yourself on best packing methods, you are ready ‘to go it alone.’ On the other hand, if you are really busy and some areas puzzle you, especially if you’re going far away, getting professional help is a great solution. And there will be other ways to save money (for example, while making a new apartment checklist). Bear in mind that packing will most likely determine your overall satisfaction, so take your time to decide and don’t hesitate to look up and contact reliable moving companies and arrange their packing services.

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