How to Fold: Socks

Did you see the first rules of learning to fold clothes properly?  If not, take a peek here.

So we’re going to start with socks.  And I realize that seems like an odd choice when there are much bigger fish to fry with an out-of-control underwear drawer and all.  Or the tshirts that are everywhere and your husband still can’t find the one he wants to wear.

Have no fear – all of these issues will be covered in the days to come.

We’re starting with socks because they are easy to fold, fast to fold…and you can make your sock drawer look great in 10 minutes or less.

If you can see quick, promising results, you’ll be motivated to move onto something a little harder or time-consuming.  Before you know it, your whole dresser will be done!

So let’s get going…

This is the method that most of the world uses.

Bad method socks 

It is only because they don’t know a better way.  So promise yourself that today will be the last day you use the Sock Ball Method.

1) Start with a clean pair of socks, lying in the same direction and smoothed out with your hands so there are no obvious lumps and bumps.

Socks pre-fold

2)  Place one sock directly on top of the other.  Line up the toes and the heels precisely.

Lined up Socks 

3)  Using one hand to hold the heels in place, fold the right side of the socks over to the left.

Hold Sock Heel

Folded sock

4) Smooth socks with your hand to ensure there are no wrinkles and they are lying flat.


Here is another example with socks that don’t have a calf portion (sports socks):

Sport Socks Laid outSports Socks Lined Up Sports Socks Fold OverSports Socks Completed 

Now wasn’t that easy?!  You’ll have your whole sock drawer folded in a matter of minutes.  Then it can look like this:

Sock Drawer

And you’ll be oh so happy.


  1. I have never seen this method for sock folding before, but it does seem simple. I think its advantage would be that you don’t stretch out the top of the socks with the balling socks method you showed in the first picture. Of course, the advantage of doing it the first way is when the kids rifle through the drawers to find socks they don’t get them all separated. Does that happen with your preferred folding method? If not, I think I might try it! Thanks for sharing your tips!

  2. I was wondering the same thing – the matches get messed up , don’t they? Our socks are folded in the traditional way, if they get folded at all. 🙂 Usually we just rifle through a socks basket to find a pair – matching or not. But I’ve been reading some laundry posts on other blogs too and I may be changing the way I do socks.

    I have a large family. Each child is going to have a plastic drawer for socks and underwear close to the place where we do laundry – which unfortunately happens to be my living room. However, I am learning that functionality needs to come before beauty in a house of many people.

    • mamalaundry says:

      You couldn’t be more right – functionality must sometimes take the lead! Especially in a home with a “larger” family (‘larger’ is relative, right? 😉 )

      As for the sock folding, I do the turn-down method for everyone under the age of 5. Just now my oldest son (who is 5) can put his socks away without destroying his sock bin. The 3 year old? Not so much. She still gets the turn-down method along with the baby. I found with my son that if he is responsible for putting his socks away, then he does a better job of keeping his bin straight. I might have to develop a different strategy for my other children as they get older!

      Thanks for reading here at Mama’s! I’m glad some of it was helpful to you!


  3. I do not fold my socks either way listed in this blog. I take the socks and put one inside another completely by doing the following:

    1) take and put sock on one hand as if it was the foot
    2) take the other matching sock and put in over the first sock on your hand.
    3) slide your hand out of the socks
    4) your done.

    this works best for me and my hubby, the socks then lay flat in our sock draw.

    Oh and for any sock’s mate that the laundry decided to eat, it goes in the mate-less basket until the mate appears. If no mate appears then we donate them to a girl scouts unit that make cat toys for the local animal shelter.

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