Scarf Organizing Hacks That Are Total Game-Changers

No matter how well-organized your closet is, there are likely a few items that you find tough to incorporate into your system. Accessories often fall into this camp because, well, they often don't quite merit a hanger of their own, or have an entire drawer devoted to them; still, you want to store them in a way where you can still see what you have, and what you may wish to add to your outfit of the day. One of the particularly challenging accessories to corral is scarves — if you have a variety of scarves in your wardrobe, you'll know the struggle of organizing them. More often than not, they just end up stuffed into a drawer or basket, or tossed over any available surface. Then, whenever you decide there's a particular scarf you'd like to wear, it may end up being too wrinkled to even put on without a careful ironing (which absolutely no one has time for).

The solution? Unfortunately, you just need to put a little bit of time into establishing an organizing system for scarves in particular that works for you. Once you have that in place, you'll be able to find and wear any scarf in your collection at a moment's notice. Whichever method you prefer, it'll likely be better than the haphazard system you had going beforehand — so here are a few organizing hacks that might just make your life easier. You can start implementing whichever one you think you could most easily maintain.

Take a cue from The Home Edit and create colorful "doughnuts"

Anyone who binge-watched "Get Organized with the Home Edit" on Netflix might recall that organizing mavens Joanna Teplin and Clea Shearer have a unique method of storing scarves. While you can certainly re-watch the series to refresh yourself on all the organization tips, The Home Edit team actually shared a short clip with just the scarf organizing tutorial on their Instagram page. Essentially, you wrap a scarf around your hand over and over, and when you reach the end of your scarf, you just take that end and push it through the hole in your little bundle, creating a compact little "doughnut." Then, when you have all your scarves arranged into the "doughnut" shape, you can place them in a basket or drawer and rest assured that they're not getting tangled, and that you'll be able to find the one you want because the patterns and colors are clearly visible. As an added bonus, the fact that your scarves so compactly wrapped means they won't get as wrinkled. 

While this method is fantastic for thinner scarves, it may be a bit more challenging for large, bulky scarves — those will create much larger doughnuts that could be tougher to contain. However, it'll still work — you may just want to store them separately from your regular scarves, alongside the rest of your winter gear.

Roll your scarves up

Similar to the doughnut method approved by The Home Edit, this organization hack will keep your scarves wrinkle-free, and will allow you to easily store scarves of all shapes and sizes. As any frequent traveler knows, one of the best ways to ensure your clothes stay wrinkle-free no matter what is to roll them up rather than fold them (per House Beautiful). Yes, it takes a bit more time, and it isn't always ideal for more structured pieces, but for items crafted from thin material that are relatively shapeless (like scarves) it's the perfect method. All you need to do is lay out your scarf, fold it until it's the width you want, and then neatly roll it up until you're left with a compact tube that keeps the wrinkles at bay. Then, you can arrange these little rolled-up scarf tubes wherever you have room — on a closet shelf, in a drawer, in a basket, etc. 

If you're really particular about keeping your scarves meticulously organized, you may consider getting a PVC pipe and cutting small lengths to place in your drawer or on your shelf, according to Hangorize. Each little pipe segment can hold one rolled-up scarf, and it'll keep them contained and avoid any mishaps with your rolls falling over.

Combine several scarves on a hanger

Unless you have an enviable walk-in closet with an insane amount of square footage, changes are you don't want to waste space by assigning one scarf per hanger. If you have a large collection, that could take up half of your available hanging space! However, if you want to organize your scarves without much effort, and without the expense of getting organizational bins or tools, the hanger method just might be the ideal option for you. Yes, you can buy hangers specifically designed for scarves with compartments that make the process easier, but it's absolutely not necessary. Basically, you can just take a regular hanger (just make sure it's the type that has the part across the bottom) and drape several scarves over it, hanging them like you would any other item of clothing (via Pretty Simple Mom). 

If you're worried your scarves will slip off, or if they're crafted from a particularly slippery fabric like silk or satin, you can gently knot them on the hanger to keep them in place. This organizing hack means that your scarves will be easily visible, and depending on the size, you can usually store at least four or five per hanger, maybe more if they're quite thin. You may need a couple hangers if you have an extensive collection, but you'll have a wrinkle-free way to store all your scarves without having to sacrifice too much hanging space.

Take a cue from Marie Kondo and fold your scarves

Anyone who loves organizing has probably either read organizing guru Marie Kondo's book, "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up," or watched her Netflix series, "Tidying Up with Marie Kondo." She has tips for how to organize just about everything in your space, including scarves. Kondo suggests treating scarves in the same way that you'd treat other clothing items and neatly folding them and stacking them side-by-side in a box or container of some sort, according to Mind Body Green. The placement is the key here — you want the scarves to be vertical, so that you can glimpse every scarf in the pile, rather than a horizontal stack where you can only see the top scarf in the drawer. This allows the accessories to be easily accessible and visible, and folding them keeps them from getting wrinkled. 

Kondo also recommends placing scarves of similar sizes together in order to keep things very neat and tidy. And, though many may think they need to put a bunch of their scarves in storage during the warmer months to save precious closet space, Kondo warns against it, saying that it's better to keep them in an accessible spot throughout the year. After all, sometimes you may need to pull one out during a chilly summer evening, or to battle the intense air conditioning found in some commercial spaces.

Create a chic scarf storage ladder

For many fashion lovers, closet space is limited, and it can be tough to carve out room for accessories when you're already filling the small area with all of your clothing. However, you also don't want accessories scattered throughout your whole house or apartment, cluttering things up and getting lost. Luckily, scarves have one distinct advantage — they're absolutely beautiful when on display! The variety of patterns, colors, and textures, as well as the relative similarity in size, makes them a great candidate for displaying in a unique way. That's where the storage ladder comes in.

Chances are, you've seen blanket ladders, where a variety of throw blankets are tossed over the rungs, ready to grab at a moment's notice and easily accessible in a living room or similar space. You can do the exact same thing with scarves, as noted by Bob Vila. Whether you DIY the ladder or simply pick one up, you can position it wherever you think best, from beside your closet to by your front door for easy access when you leave, and then easily hang your scarves over the various rungs. This is also a great hack for someone with scarves of varying textures and sizes — they can all be stored on different rings of the same ladder, ready to grab whenever you need one.