How to Fold Jeans & Organize Jeans

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Originally published October 28, 2013 and updated July 14, 2019 and March 16, 2023.

A while back a reader asked me the best way to fold and organize jeans.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve tried everything when it comes to folding and organizing my jeans. If you’re looking for a simple fold technique, I’ve found the easiest and best option.

4 pairs of folded jeans in different shades on white background.

These tips also work well if you’re wondering how to fold pants.

This is the best way I’ve found to neatly fold jeans (and to fold pants, too) and save space in a closet. It allows you to organize them so your closet stays nice and neat. 

Whether you have just a few pairs of jeans or many, this folding technique is for you. It allows you to store pants and jeans to best take advantage of your closet space. You can fold and stack them on a shelf. You can fold and place them in a closet or dresser drawer. You can even fold and then roll them to be stacked on a shelf in the closet.

Nothing was working for me.  Hanging jeans takes up a lot of valuable real estate in your closet since jeans tend to be bulky. I particularly hated the stack of folded jeans.  The pair I wanted to wear was never on the top.   I had to do a whole dance to remove the pair I wanted from the stack and then return the stack to its neatly stacked position.  Ugh.  I’ve got a life to live and not enough time to play re-stack the jeans.

Then I realized that I could fold and file my jeans just like I do my t-shirts and linens. to organize them and save space. You know, fold jeans like a professional.

But before you start folding your jeans, take 10 minutes and follow these purging tips for jeans to find which jeans you should really keep, fold and organize. 

neatly folded jeans organized in a blue striped bin on wood table.

5 Reasons to Fold Jeans

  1. Jeans don’t tend to wrinkle or stretch out of shape so you can fold them and they’ll still look fresh.
  2. If you have limited hanging room, folding jeans makes more space for the clothes that need to be hung up.
  3. Folding jeans allows you to store them either in a drawer or on a shelf. 
  4. When you fold them, you can file them so it’s easy to quickly see and grab the pair you want. 
  5. Folded jeans can be compressed to save space if you have limited closet or clothes storage space. If you do have limited space, start by deciding how many clothes do you really need with this free printable worksheet.

How to Fold and Organize Jeans

1. Lay jeans out on a flat surface. Line up the seams of the legs and the top and bottom of the jeans. Smooth out any large creases.
Lay them out this way to prevent wearing crease line down the front and back of  legs of the jeans.

pair of blue jeans spread out on wood table.

2. Fold the jeans in half, bringing the right side to the left. Smooth out wrinkles.

Again, do it this way to prevent wearing lines down the legs of your jeans.

Tip – Per a reader’s suggestion, fold the jeans with the back pockets on the outside (in the photo below the pockets are folded in). When you fold the pockets on the outside, it makes it easy to identify each pair of jeans.

blue jeans folded length wise on wood table.

3. Fold the jeans in half by bringing the bottom of the leg up to the top of the waistband.  Be sure to smooth out any large wrinkles.

blue jeans folded in half and in half again on wood table.

And fold them in half one more time.

blue jeans folded into a neat square on a wood table.

When your jeans are folded into this square, you can file them in a bin, box or basket.  Place the jeans with the folded edge up to keep them neater. Filing your folded jeans like this makes them easier to access. 

Get my 37-page How to Fold Clothes ebook now with images and directions for folding all types of clothing.

Expert Tips for Folding Jeans

  • For thicker or heavier jeans, you may need to adjust the folding technique slightly to make sure they are not too bulky when folded. Make adjustments in steps 2 and 3 by, for example, example folding the bottom of the pants to the halfway point and then fold up to the waistband. This ends up folding the pair of pants in thirds rather than fourths.
  • If you have several pairs of jeans, consider organizing them by color or style to make it easier to find the pair you want to wear.
  • If you prefer to hang your jeans, make sure to use hangers with clips or hooks specifically designed for pants to avoid stretching or damaging the fabric.
  • When traveling, fold your jeans in the same manner and pack them in your suitcase or bag to save space and keep them neatly organized.

How to Organize Jeans

There are several different ways to store jeans. Once you know them all, you can choose the best way to store jeans for you and your home.

My favorite way to store casual jeans is to fold them and file them, Marie Kondo style, in a box or bin.

Jeans folded and filed in a box.

Simply place the box of filed jeans on a closet shelf and you’ll be able to easily see and select the pair of jeans you want.

side view of neatly folded jeans in white and black basket.

No more wrestling with the stacked pile of jeans. This is the best way I’ve found to fold and organize jeans and to fold pants, too.

More ideas so you can find the right way for your storage space:

collage of images of different ways to hang blue jeans on hangers.
  1. Some people prefer rolled pants. This allows you to neatly stack the jeans on a shelf.
  2. Hang jeans or dress pants on wood or plastic hangers. This is method works well to store pants or jean with a pleat down the front of the pant leg.
  3. You can use clip style pant hangers to hang jeans.
  4. You can use regular wood hangers placed inside the waistband of the pants. This method works better for jeans or casual pants than dress pants.
  5. Clamp style pant hangers also work for jeans. Hanging from the pant hem can work well for pants because the weight of the pants help them hang straight, preventing wrinkles.
What’s the most efficient way to fold jeans?

Shake the jeans out to remove wrinkles. Fold the waistband in half, lining up the side seams. Fold the jeans in half again, bringing the pant hems up to the waist. Fold the jeans in half again making a squared shape.

More Tips for the Best Way to Fold

Folding Clothes – Tips on how to decide how the best way to fold clothes for your unique situation. Tips on folding clothes for 8 different types of clothes styles.

collage of six images of neatly folded clothes with text overlay.

How to Fold Bed Sheets – Use these easy tips on how to fold bed sheets to keep your sheets and linen closet organized and looking pretty.

overhead view of green patterned sheets neatly folded and partially inserted in pillowcase.

How to Fold Curtains – I’ve learned a few tricks to make moving a bit easier and much more organized. One of the tricks that makes moving easier for us is keeping all our curtains organized so that we know exactly what will work in our new home.

neatly folded brown and green curtains in a box.

How to Fold Fabric – It’s simple to fold fabric to keep it neat and tidy in your craft room. Folding fabric in uniform sizes makes it easier to keep it organized.

Stacks of neatly folded fabric on shelf with text overlay.

You can find all our best clothes organizing and care tips in the table below. You can scroll though the table and look for ideas or search for specific ideas with the magnifying glass in the upper right-hand corner (on desktop). Click on the topic and then click through the specific article.

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  1. Hi Susan – I’ve been looking forward to this post since you said you were working on it! Jeans are always the bain of my organizing existence. I’m a big roller. I roll everything. You are starting to convince me there are other ways… love the new ideas! Hugs, Holly

  2. Finally! An answer to all of those jeans hanging the the closet taking up space! This is the best idea ever! I need to reorganize my closet and get my pants in order!

  3. I am a retired military wife and I love your organizing ideas. They make so much sense. We moved 14 times in 22 years. Where were you when I needed you, Susan??? lol Enjoy your day and thank you.

  4. With 8 children in a 1200 sf home, I may have found my new favorite website. THANK YOU! With teen boys… jeans have become the bane of my existence…

  5. I have the smallest closet (and am sharing it with my boyfriend), so I’ve resorted to folding a good portion of my clothes. It never occurred to me that I could do jeans folding to save extra space, but I will certainly be trying this. Thanks for the tip!

  6. Thank you for the information on folding jeans – which is something that I did not think that needed to know, but when I watched it, decided that this idea is better than the folded jeans in my dresser drawer! Thank you. And thank you for the party.

  7. Hi Susan, thank you for this article. I am looking for a box to fit my jeans in, do you have any recommendations? I really like the box you used in the pictures in this article, could you please tell me where you got it please? Thank you very much! Kind regards! šŸ™‚

    1. I’m so glad that you found the tips helpful, Stephanie. I made the box with a simple sewing tutorial. Do you sew? If so, I can send you a link to the tutorial. Otherwise, you can purchase bins and baskets at Target, Walmart, The Container Store and Bed, Bath and Beyond. You can also check my Amazon shop for products that I recommend. Let me know if you’d like the link.

    1. You can fold them another time or it might be more helpful to do the first 2 folds and then roll them, Meredith. It depends on the size of the drawer and of the jeans. Feel free to email me the dimensions of the drawer if you’d like a personalized answer.

  8. This is a good idea, but I’d highly recommend the outside pocket showing when all the folding is complete. This way each pair is immediately identifiable by the pocket design.

  9. I’ve always folded my jeans like this but with the pocket outward but I never thought to file them! (Although I file my 18 month old baby boys pants! Just never thought to do mine) I stack them and they are always getting messed up when I am searching for a pair. I will try doing my jeans too! Can you please send me a link for the sewing tutorial for the bin you store your jeans in?! Thanks!

    1. You’ll love filing your jeans, Billie-Rose! It really is a game changer. I just emailed you a link for a similar tutorial to my fabric bin.

  10. What a great idea! With our changeable weather I have the same problem with the pair I want never being on top. I just need to find a place to put a bin…(my shelf is way too high)

    1. I hope you find this tip helpful. I’m all about making things easier in my day-to-day life (the rest of life is already difficult enough!).

  11. This is a CLEVER idea and way to organize and fold ALL of my jeans! Thanks – plus it will help save space in my closet!

    1. Filing rather than stacking jeans makes mornings surprisingly much easier. Hope you find these tips helpful, too, Erin

    2. The steps to fold military pants are: Lay the pants out and smooth any creases and wrinkles; Turn the waistband inside out and flatten the pockets; Flip the pants and flatten the pants again; Fold one pant leg over the other to form a rectangular shape; Fold the ankles up and smooth out any creases and wrinkles; Roll the pants upwards, starting from the bottom; Wrap the rolled pants into a mini burrito.

  12. The steps to folding military pants are: lay out the pants and smooth out any wrinkles and creases. Turn the waistband inside out and smooth out the pockets. Turn pants inside out and flatten again. Fold one pant leg over the other to form a square shape. Bend your ankles up and smooth out wrinkles and fine lines.Roll up the pants, starting at the bottom. Wrap the rolled up pants into a mini burrito.

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