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5 Space-Saving Tips for RV Closets & Drawers

| Updated Aug 31, 2022

As RVers, we can never get enough space-saving tips, especially when it comes to RV closets and drawers. Here are 5 things you can do to make the most of your clothing storage…

Clothing is perhaps the most frustrating thing to store in your RV because you constantly need to change it out. Depending on when and where you’re traveling, you may need completely different wardrobes from one trip to the next.

The problem is, instead of swapping out wardrobes every trip, we end up with too many clothes that we aren’t actually wearing in the RV. 

The best advice I can give you is to minimize your wardrobe and tweak it before every trip. But the reality is you’ll still likely have more clothing than storage space, especially if you’re traveling with companions. 

So, instead of only telling you how to minimize your wardrobe, I’m going to share some tips on how to pack more in the same amount of space. Then, I am going to share tips on minimizing!

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How to Fit MORE in RV Closets and Drawers

The truth is, a lot of storage space is underutilized because we don’t store things in it properly. This is especially true for RV closets and drawers. 

We can maximize the space by making small changes that add up to a big difference. Here’s how…

5 Space-Saving Tips for RV Closets & Drawers
Roll, don't fold.

Roll, Don’t Fold

This is one of the best pieces of advice I can give you when it comes to putting clothes away in your RV. Roll your clothes that go in a drawer. Don’t fold them!

There are two big reasons why:

  1. Rolled clothes take up less room than folded clothes.
  2. Rolled clothes wedge next to each other so you can easily grab one item without digging under others. When we stack folded clothes, they inevitably get messed up and take up even more space.

Exceptions to this rule:

  1. Jeans are better folded than rolled. The stiffer material will try to unroll itself but lays flat nicely. So, in the case of jeans, you should fold them or, better yet, hang them in the closet.
  2. Puffy clothing doesn’t roll well. If you have a puffy vest, jacket, or pants, good luck rolling it! You can roll them and wrap a rubber band around them, but they still tend to flare out and take up too much space this way. It’s best to store these items in a compress bag (I’ll talk about these shortly). 

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5 Space-Saving Tips for RV Closets & Drawers 1
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To make your rolling even more effective, you should separate your bigger drawers into compartments. 

Even if you’re storing the same thing in the drawer (i.e., all underwear), the compartments can help keep everything packed tight as you use the items throughout the week.

These adjustable drawer dividers are one of many options you can find to compartmentalize your drawers. 

As for RV closets, you want to make the most of vertical and shelf space, too. These shelf dividers serve the same purpose as the drawer dividers. I think they’re better than putting baskets up on a shelf because you can easily reach and grab what you need from the section.

However, baskets or foldable storage bins can work well, too.

For compartmentalizing vertical space, you can use a hanging shelf organizer or easily turn your one bar into two with this adjustable hanging rod.

Compress & Contain

I’m sure you expected me to include vacuum storage bags in this list, and I am. They really come in handy for storing bedding and poofy clothing that you don’t use every day. However, they’re not helpful for storing everyday clothes.

For clothing you need to compress and contain (like that puffy winter vest), I recommend cube bags. These are zip-up bags that come in all different sizes. Eagle Creek offers a range of these storage cubes, including compression sets.

These bags are great for containing any clothing items that are hard to fold (and keep folded). This includes “slippery” clothing, like silks or lightweight blouses, and odd-shaped items like scarves, belts, and gloves.

Embrace Doing Laundry

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Embrace doing laundry.

My next space-saving tip does not relate to products but, rather, a mindset. Many campgrounds (& even RVs!) have washers and dryers. So, there’s no need to pack enough clothing for your entire trip.

Instead, you can pack HALF the outfits for the different purposes you need. For instance, instead of a week of hiking outfits, you only pack three. Or three or four t-shirts instead of seven.

Then, you just embrace the idea of doing laundry on your trip. There’s usually plenty of leisure time spent at your campsite that you can enjoy while doing laundry in the background.

Seasonal Cleanout

Organizational experts always recommend you do a seasonal cleanout of your at-home closet. They say, if you haven’t worn it in the past 6 months or in the past season, donate it!

I recommend doing the same but every roadtrip or two. If you haven’t worn that beach sarong the last two times you went to the beach, take it out of your RV! If you wear the same sweatshirt whenever you travel somewhere cold, take out the other two sweatshirts!

You always think, “Well, I might need this,” and it’s okay to pack like that the first time. Or even the second time. But, by the third time, you need to be honest about the odds of using it.

Now, as for seasonal clothing, I have another great tip for you! When you go to remove seasonal clothing from your RV, pack them into organizational bags like the ones I recommended in the “Compress and Contain” section above. 

That way, when that season comes around again, you just have to put the bags back into your RV drawers. No more going through and packing your clothes every season!

More Space-Saving Tips

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We’re big fans of Organized Obie products ever since we toured their facility in Indiana. They have simple yet very effective storage solutions for RVs. You can check out the 5 Best Lightweight RV Storage Solutions we recommend.

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Mike Wendland

Published on 2022-08-30

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

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