How to Fold Socks, 6 Different Ways

Person arranging folded socks into a sock organizer

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If your sock drawer is overflowing and finding a matching pair to wear is a struggle every morning, it may be time for a new folding and organizational method. Socks are one of those things that seem to multiply in the laundry basket and then disappear the second they go in the dryer, and keeping them sorted and organized can seem like an impossible feat. But with a couple of simple steps and space-saving folding methods, your sock drawer will look like it was organized by a professional in no time.

The first step, as is the case with most reorganizing projects, is to empty out the contents of the drawer. Clean it out, then go through your socks, purge and sort them into categories such as ankle socks, tall socks, dress socks, or winter socks. Once they're divided into groups, you'll have a better idea of what you're working with and can decide whether you need to use any dividers, organizers or bins to help keep the socks sorted. When it comes to folding methods, there are numerous ways to fold socks that will save space, make the drawer look neat and keep pairs together. Read on to learn about different folding methods and see which ones suit your needs best.

Fold Them Into a Square

Take a pair of socks and place one on top of the other so they are perpendicular, forming a crisscross shape. Take the toe end of the bottom sock and fold it over the top sock, tucking it under where it overlaps. Take the other end of the bottom sock and fold it over in the same way, tucking the end under. Follow the same steps for the top sock, folding it under in the same manner and tucking the toe end inside the sock opening to create a neat folded sock square.

This is a great space-saving folding method that makes organizing your sock drawer much easier, creates a uniform look and prevents the elastic at the top of the socks from being stretched out and damaged over time.

Roll Them Into a Jelly Roll

This is a quick and easy folding method that works best if you have a sturdy organizer or separator inside your drawer, since there is a chance the socks will unroll if they are not held within a compartment.

Simply take a pair of socks, place one on top of the other and roll them tightly starting at the toe end to create a compact jelly roll shape. Depending on drawer space and whether you are using dividers or not, you can either stand the rolled socks up or lay them down and stack them.

Roll Them Inside Out

This folding trick is the best way to ensure your socks won't unroll. Take one sock and place it on top of the other, then tightly roll it the same way you would a jelly roll, starting with the toe end. Once it is rolled tightly, take one of the cuffs and fold it inside out, placing the jelly rolled socks inside it to form a ball shape.

This method does stretch the socks out more than the others do, but ensures the socks will stay together.

Flip Them Inside Out

As with the previous folding methods, place the socks one on top of the other, then take one of the cuffs and reverse it inside out, folding it over the socks halfway down.

This is a quick way to fold socks and keep pairs together, and is especially good for casual or sports socks.

Folding Ankle Socks

Some of the above folding methods don't work quite as well for ankle socks as they do for tall socks, but here's a way that you can fold all your ankle socks.

Take one sock and lay it down, then take the second sock and place it on top of it so they form a crisscross shape. Take the cuff end of the bottom sock and fold it over the top sock, then take the toe end of the same sock, fold it over and tuck it into the cuff. Do the same with the top sock and you'll end up with a tight, securely folded pair of ankle socks.

Folding Dress Socks

Dress socks tend to be made from a thinner, finer material than say, wool socks, so you want to make sure they are folded carefully and the elastic band around the ankle doesn't get stretched out and damaged.

Place one sock on top of the other, then take the toe ends and fold them a third of the way, then fold them over one more time. Take the outer cuff end and tuck the folded toe ends inside, then flatten the folded socks so there aren't any creases and they can be stored away neatly.