Packing Guide

Packing Clothes for Moving: A Complete Packing Guide

Table of Contents

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We've all been there: staring at a closet full of clothes, wondering how to start packing clothes for moving. Whether it's that comfy sweater you wear on chilly nights or the dress you wore on your first date, every piece tells a story. 

For expert guidance in packing clothes for moving, look no further than D1 Moving. Leveraging our vast experience in handling delicate items, we promise a seamless and stress-free relocation experience.

Our guide dives deep into packing clothes for moving, offering expert tips on the best materials and proven strategies to ensure your garments are moved seamlessly and efficiently. With our insights, you'll be equipped with the knowledge to make your move seamless and stress-free.

How to Pack Clothes for Moving

Moving can be a whirlwind of emotions - from excitement to nostalgia to stress. Among the items you'll pack, clothes are significant not just for their value but the memories attached. Let's dive into our guide to learn the best way to pack clothes for moving.

Why Proper Packing Matters

Before delving into the nitty-gritty of packing, let's underscore the significance of packing clothes for moving the right way. By ensuring you pack correctly, you:

  • Protect Your Clothes: Shield your garments from potential harm during transit.
  • Maximize Space: Efficient packing can free up valuable space in your moving vehicle or storage unit.
  • Ease the Unpacking: A well-organized packing process can significantly reduce stress when it's time to unpack.
  • Maintain Garment Quality: Proper packing techniques help in preserving the original quality and appearance of your clothes.

Set the Stage with This Pre-Packing Checklist

To reduce stress and save time, start your packing process early. Proper preparation can make the difference between a chaotic moving day and a seamless transition to your new home. Work through this guide to ensure an efficient move.

Clothing Pre-Packing Checklist
Clothing Pre-Packing Checklist
  1. Declutter and Donate: Evaluate your wardrobe and part with items you no longer wear. Donating or selling these pieces reduces packing volume and can be financially rewarding.
  2. Clean Your Clothes: Pack only clean clothes to prevent set-in stains and ensure a fresh start in your new space. Check out this pre-move tool to explore your professional cleaning options.
  3. Inventory and List: Create a clothing inventory to track items and highlight special pieces. This ensures nothing is overlooked and delicate items get the care they need.
  4. Gather Packing Supplies Early: Stock up on essential packing materials in advance. If possible, opt for eco-friendly supplies that are gentle on both your clothes and the environment.
  5. Check Weather and Season: If moving to a different climate, pack an "essentials" box with season-appropriate clothing. This ensures immediate comfort upon arrival.
  6. Organize: Group similar items together, like shirts with shirts and pants with pants. This not only streamlines the packing process but also makes unpacking more efficient.

Choosing the Correct Materials for Packing Clothes

When packing clothes for moving, the materials you use can significantly influence the condition in which they arrive at your new destination. The right packing materials not only protect your clothes but also make the unpacking process more manageable. Let's delve deeper into the various options available:

Correct Materials for Packing Clothes
Correct Materials for Packing Clothes

Bags for Packing Clothes

Bags are versatile and can cater to a range of clothing items. Depending on the type of garment and its durability, you can choose from:

  • Plastic Bags: These are lightweight and ideal for items that aren't easily damaged, such as t-shirts or gym clothes. They're also great for temporary storage or for segregating laundry.
  • Vacuum Bags: A space-saver's dream! These vacuum bags are perfect for bulky items like winter jackets, sweaters, or quilts. By removing air, they compress the contents, making storage more efficient.
  • Garment Bags: Tailored for the more delicate or formal items in your wardrobe. They maintain the shape of suits, evening dresses, and other special attire, ensuring they remain wrinkle-free and protected from dust. Check out these top rated garment bags for a better idea of what to expect.

Boxes for Packing Clothes

Boxes are the traditional go-to for moving. They're stackable, sturdy, and can accommodate a variety of items:

  • Standard Moving Boxes: These are the workhorses of any move. Cardboard boxes adaptable and can accommodate a range of items. When packing, think of it like a puzzle; heavier items at the bottom, with lighter ones on top. Remember to fill any empty spaces with packing paper or soft items to prevent movement inside the box.
  • Wardrobe Boxes: These tall boxes come with a hanging rod, replicating a mini wardrobe. They're perfect for items that need to remain hanging, such as suits, gowns, or coats. Make your move easy with this portable closet.


An often-overlooked packing material, suitcases are especially useful for moves. Made to withstand the rigors of travel, they offer excellent protection for your clothes. Equipped with wheels and handles, they're easy to transport, making them ideal for essentials you might need immediately upon arrival.


If you're relocating with your furniture, there's no need to empty those dresser drawers. Instead of removing and packing the contents, you can often transport dressers with clothes still in them. Just ensure the drawers are secure, either by locking them or by wrapping the dresser with stretch wrap.

Staging Different Clothing Items for Optimal Packing

Before diving into the packing process, it's crucial to stage or organize your clothes effectively. Proper staging not only ensures your clothes remain in top condition but also streamlines the packing and unpacking processes. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to stage various clothing items:

  • Shirts: Fold casual tees and formal blouses neatly, smoothing out collars and sleeves. Use garment bags for high-end dress shirts to keep them wrinkle-free.
  • Pants: Lay jeans and slacks flat, folding them along their natural creases to maintain shape and avoid wrinkles.
  • Dresses: Depending on the fabric and design, fold or use wardrobe boxes. Delicate or detailed dresses benefit most from the latter.
  • Sweaters: Fold bulky sweaters carefully to retain shape. For snag-prone materials, use individual bags or tissue paper for added protection.
  • Kids' Clothes: Organize by type and size, folding them gently. Store in designated containers to prevent misplacement.
  • Undergarments: Keep items like socks, underwear, and ties organized in pouches or compartments for easy access and optimal condition.

Transporting Clothes Safely During a Move

Transporting Clothes Safely During a Move
Transporting Clothes Safely During a Move

Once your clothes are securely packed, the next step is ensuring they reach your new home in pristine condition. Proper transportation is crucial to prevent any damage during the move. Here are some tips to ensure your garments are well-protected throughout the journey:

  • Avoid Overpacking: To prevent damage, it's essential not to overfill boxes or bags. Distributing clothes evenly reduces the risk of boxes tearing or bags straining.
  • Labeling is Key: Always label your boxes or containers. If you're using professional moving services, clear labels help movers identify and handle boxes with care, streamlining the unpacking process.
  • Guard Against External Threats: Position clothes away from potential hazards like liquids that might spill. If there's a chance of rain or moisture during the move, consider using waterproof covers to shield your garments.
  • Strategic Loading: When arranging items in a moving vehicle, always place heavier boxes at the base. This foundation ensures that boxes or suitcases with fragile or delicate clothes aren't crushed by weightier items.

3 Different Methods to Pack Clothes

When it comes to packing clothes for moving, there isn't a one-size-fits-all approach. The method you choose should cater to the specific type of garment and your personal packing preferences. Each method offers unique advantages, and understanding them can help you determine the best fit for your packing needs.

Different Methods to Pack Clothes
Different Methods to Pack Clothes

Let's delve into some popular methods:

The KonMari Method

Introduced by Marie Kondo, the KonMari Method emphasizes both efficient folding and cherishing your garments. Here's a clear guide for shirts:

  1. Lay the shirt flat on a surface.
  2. Fold one side of the shirt towards the center, then do the same with the opposite side.
  3. Fold the shirt lengthwise, ensuring there's a small gap at the edge.
  4. Depending on the shirt's length, fold it again in half or into thirds.
  5. When packing, position the folded shirt upright in your storage container, be it a moving box or suitcase. This arrangement maximizes space and allows for easy access.

To master this technique, watch Marie Kondo’s detailed guide to folding clothes.

Traditional Flat Fold

This is perhaps the most common method many of us are familiar with. This can be a variety of methods and comes down to what you’re comfortable with. Here are the typical guidelines:

  • For Shirts: Lay the shirt face down on a flat surface. Fold both sleeves towards the shirt's center, and then fold the bottom half up, smoothing out any wrinkles.
  • For Pants: Simply fold one leg over the other and then fold in thirds, ensuring wrinkles are smoothed out.
  • For Sweatshirts: Begin by laying the sweatshirt face down. Fold the sleeves in towards the center, and then fold the bottom half up. Due to their bulk, sweatshirts might require a bit more space than regular shirts.
  • For Undergarments: Lay them flat and fold in half or thirds, depending on their size and style. For bras, it's best to stack them with cups inside each other to maintain their shape.
  • For Socks: Place one sock on top of the other, aligning them perfectly. Starting from the toe, roll them up towards the open end. Once rolled, you can fold the open end over the rolled portion to keep them together.

To use a traditional fold that will maximize space, watch this video here.

Military Rolling Method

A space-saving technique that's especially useful for packing in tight spaces. Here's a step-by-step guide for shirts:

  1. Lay the shirt flat on a surface.
  2. Fold a few inches of the bottom part of the shirt upwards, creating a pouch.
  3. Fold the sleeves towards the center.
  4. Fold the shirt in half vertically.
  5. Starting from the top, roll the shirt tightly towards the bottom.
  6. Tuck the rolled shirt into the pouch created in step 2 for a secure fit.

If you find this method a bit complex, an alternative is to simply roll the shirt as tightly as you can. For a visual guide on this technique, along with how to pack other types of clothes in this way, check out this video tutorial on the Military Rolling Method.

Packing Shoes for Moving

Shoes, being both functional and often a fashion statement, require special attention during a move. Here's how to pack them efficiently:

  • Clean First: Before packing, ensure your shoes are clean. This prevents dirt from transferring to other items and ensures you start fresh in your new home.
  • Pair Them Up: Always pack shoes together as a pair. This prevents the frustrating search for the other shoe when unpacking.
  • Use Shoe Bags or Original Boxes: If you've kept the original boxes, they are perfect for packing. Otherwise, shoe bags or even large zip-lock bags can be used. They protect the shoes from dust and potential scuffs.
  • Stuff Them: To maintain their shape, especially for formal or structured shoes, stuff them with paper or bubble wrap. This prevents them from getting crushed.
  • Layering in Boxes: If you're packing multiple pairs in a box, place heavier shoes at the bottom and lighter ones on top. This ensures the lighter shoes don't get squashed.

Don’t Forget Jewelry and Accessories

Jewelry, with its delicate and often intricate designs, can be a challenge to pack. Here's a guide to ensure your precious items remain untangled and undamaged:

  • Use Jewelry Boxes: If you have them, jewelry boxes with compartments are ideal. They keep items separated, preventing tangles and potential damage.
  • Zip-lock Bags: For items without a jewelry box, small zip-lock bags are a lifesaver. They're perfect for earrings, rings, and even bracelets. One item per bag is the rule to avoid tangles.
  • Necklaces: Lay them flat between two sheets of plastic wrap. This prevents them from tangling and makes it easy to lay them out in a jewelry box or packing box.
  • Photograph First: Before packing, take photos of your jewelry. This not only helps in case of insurance claims but also gives you a reference for how items were stored or assembled.
  • Cushioning: Always cushion the bottom of your packing box with bubble wrap or tissue paper. This provides an added layer of protection for your precious items.

Why Choosing D1 Moving is the Best Decision for Your Relocation

When you're looking to ensure the utmost care and safety of your cherished garments during a move, we at D1 Moving stand as the top choice in Central Virginia. Our comprehensive services, paired with a deep understanding of the sentimental and monetary value of your belongings, position us as your ideal moving partner.

Here's why entrusting us with your clothing and other prized possessions is a choice you'll be proud of:

Expertise and Experience

With our rich history in the moving industry, we've refined our techniques to ensure the safe and efficient packing, transportation, and delivery of your items. Our team is adept at handling everything from daily wear to the most delicate garments.

State-of-the-Art Fleet

Our impressive fleet of over 35 trucks guarantees prompt and secure transportation. Each vehicle is designed to accommodate different volumes, ensuring your belongings, including clothes, are transported without any compromise.

Personalized Service

We recognize that every move has its unique challenges. Our dedicated team takes the time to understand your specific needs, crafting solutions that perfectly match your requirements.

Storage Solutions

If you find yourself in need of interim storage, we provide expansive warehouse facilities. This guarantees that your garments, whether in boxes or garment bags, are preserved in a controlled setting.

Commitment to Excellence

Our reputation stands tall on trust, reliability, and unmatched service quality. The plethora of positive testimonials and reviews we've received speaks volumes about our unwavering commitment to client satisfaction.

Eco-Friendly Options

As part of our commitment to a sustainable future, we offer eco-friendly packing materials. This not only safeguards your clothes but also plays a part in nurturing a healthier planet.

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