The perfectly packed suitcase or neatly organized drawer is not as unrealistic as you might think. Learning how to efficiently fold and store pants is pretty simple and, once you make a habit of it, will come naturally. Folding pants with these neat and tidy techniques helps save space in your drawers and your suitcase while traveling. They also help cut down on wrinkles and keep your pants presentable and easy to find when you need to grab clothes fast. Read on to learn how to properly fold pants and jeans for a smoother day-to-day.

Two pairs of jeans on a table

How to fold casual pants and jeans to save space

A basic fold is a good option for keeping drawers tidy because it’s quick, familiar and you can easily fill the whole drawer with your stacks. Let’s look at how to fold pants and jeans to save space in your drawers while keeping your pants organized and easy to find.

A flat pair of jeans with arrows pointing down

Step 1: Lay flat and fold

First, lay your pants on a flat surface. To remove bulk and bumps, make sure that the pockets are not bunched: slip your hands into each pocket and push in all directions.

Once the pants are flat, fold them in half lengthwise so either the front pockets meet or the back pockets meet. Either direction is acceptable. If you find that your jeans are wrinkled, stiff or hard to fold, learn more about how to wash jeans for next time.

A pair of jeans folded in half with arrow directing fold under pants

Step 2: Tuck the crotch (optional)

With the pants folded like this, you’ll notice the crotch sticks out to the side a little. You can either leave it as is or fold it under the legs. This adds a bit of bulk to the fold but makes the pants more uniform for stacking. It can also help prevent wrinkles in the crotch area.
Folded pair of pants with arrows facing up

Step 3: Fold the pants

Next, fold your pants either in thirds or in quarters, depending on the size of your drawers:

  • To fold them in quarters, fold the pants in half bringing the hem at the bottom up to meet the waistband. Fold in half once more to complete the fold.
  • To fold them in thirds, fold the hem about ⅔ of the way up the pant leg. Fold the waistband down over the top.
Two pairs of completely folded pants on a table

Step 4: Alternate direction during stacking

When stacking your folded pants, alternate the direction so the pile doesn’t get lopsided. For example, the waistband side should go away from you for one pair of pants, then toward you for the next, and so on. Why? The waistband side is slightly thicker and will cause a high stack to be unstable.
Open suitcase with folded pair of pants in it

How to fold casual pants and jeans for travel

When you travel, you need your pants to take up minimal space and arrive with as few wrinkles as possible. When you know how to fold pants and jeans correctly for traveling, you can accomplish both these feats at once. Rolling them up takes up less space in your suitcase and helps minimize wrinkles. And wrapping them in the bottom of the pant leg ensures they stay neat and tidy.

A flat pair of jeans with arrows pointing down

Step 1: Lay flat and fold

First, you’ll need to lay your pants on a flat surface. To remove bulk and bumps, make sure that the pockets are not bunched by slipping your hands into each pocket and pushing in all directions.
 
Once the pants are flat, fold them in half lengthwise so either the front pockets meet or the back pockets meet.
One pant leg folded out

Step 2: Prepare the leg

Grab the bottom part of the top pant leg and fold it out to the side, perpendicular to the rest of the pants. The fold should start around the knee with the bottom of the pant leg sticking out to the side.
Hand rolling pants up

Step 3: Roll and tuck

Beginning at the waistband, roll the pants down to the hem. Grab the rolled-up pants, then turn the loose pant leg inside out over the top of the roll and tuck the bulk of the pants neatly into the pant leg. Now your pants are ready to travel.

Care tip: Have your kids help

Folding clothes such as pants is an easy chore for kids that teaches them how to handle a simple part of the laundry process. You can make a fun game out of sorting clothes by color, then stacking the folded pants in a nice, neat pile. Get more ideas about how to involve your kids in laundry chores.

Hands pinching creased pants

How to fold pants with creases

A unique method for folding dress pants helps keep creases in their proper place without creating new ones. If you prefer to hang your dress pants, you can still use these steps to help you create the proper vertical folds.

Creased pants laying flat on a table

Step 1: Lay flat and pinch

Lay your pants face-up on a flat surface. Use your thumb and pointer finger on each hand to pinch the waistband in the two spots directly above the pant leg creases.
Creased pants folded in half with arrows facing inward

Step 2: Fold vertically like an accordian

Bring the pinched spots in the waistband together, pushing the zipper inward. Create a triangle fold in the back of the pants, mirroring the fold in the front. This should result in an accordion-like fold. Hold the pants aloft and shake out any bunches. Lay them down on a flat surface, making sure all hems and seams line up.
Pants folded in half with arrows facing up

Step 3: Fold in half twice horizontally

Smooth out the pants with your hands and make sure all the folds and seams line up. Fold them in half horizontally, then in half again.

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