Preppers Should Store Clothes for Long-term

store clothes

If the economy and world conditions continue to head downhill at their current rate, one of these days we will be glad  that we store clothes in our preps.  If you have children you want to plan ahead to allow for their growth.  For adults and children you want to stock sturdy work clothing and boots.  Clothes will wear out quicker than normal, due to having to perform more manual labor.  In addition, the clothing will be washed by methods that are more damaging to the material.

There are several ways to accumulate clothing inexpensively.  One is to go to the local thrift stores.  Good clothing can be purchased inexpensively. Second try shopping in your own closet, take those clothes that are out of style and you no longer are wearing, and pack them away.  Save your older children’s clothing for the younger ones.

How to store clothes for the long term

The clothing you store should be clean dry and repaired.  Stains and body oils can attract moths and other bugs.  My wife says not to store clothes in plastic containers.  Where we live, we store them in taped cardboard boxes.  We have had some stored for many years that way with no damage.  However, we live in an area with low humidity and store the clothing in a temperature-controlled area.

I know that many people store clothes in plastic boxes.  In some areas with high humidity, you will find that moisture will condense in the boxes causing mold to grow.  The reason some people use plastic is bugs.  In some areas, these can be a problem.  Instead of using mothballs use cedar chips.  Mothballs can leave an odor in your clothing that can be very hard to get out.

Store your clothing in cool dry areas, avoid attics and basements, these are poor storage areas for textiles.  The temperature and humidity swings cause fibers to expand and contract which in turn causes abrasion, wear, and breakage; especially at folds and creases.

Avoid direct exposure to bright lights.  Depending on the type of fiber and dyes used on the materials, light damage can occur in a very short period of time.  This damage is irreversible.  Avoid lighting that produces excessive heat or has high ultraviolet radiation, such as direct sunlight.

Rodents can be a problem, we solve that in several ways, we use strict control of food sources that they may feed off and we set out rat poisons in our storage areas.  We also have a cedar chest that is used for the storage of woolen items.

If you are going to  store clothes, don’t forget about a good stash of extra fabric, buttons, thread and etc.


9 thoughts on “Preppers Should Store Clothes for Long-term”

  1. Our clothes bought new are in totes.
    Panties, underwear, shirts, socks, shoes, jeans, jogging pants and sweatshirts, even sports bras.
    We have two cardboard boxes of flannel underwear–his and hers!!!

    1. Also, a cotton ball saturated with peppermint oil will fix the rodent problem–they hate the smell and won’t come near.
      Great for stored TP too!!
      Just refresh when needed.

  2. Many years ago when I lived in NYC I was in textile. I left rather quickly because I saw the outsourcing to Indonesia writing on the wall. I learned a lot about engineering fabrics. We produce very little fabric anymore in the USA. And, until Compliance rules for military fabric were put into effect, some of our military fabrics and clothing were manufactured in enemy countries. Go figure the intelligence of that move! What I learned about clothing and shoes, (as footwear is also outsourced for the most part), is that we had better have a safe supply on hand. And…there are ways to plant biowarfare as well as harmful chemicals in fabrics and footware.

    I vacumn pack all of my clothing and footware and then pack these inside waterproof, floating containers. I also buried some of this deep into the ground off site. O

    ne of my friends in the Southern tier flood area found a barrel of their clothing that had floated down the street into a river where it was hung up on some brush. As they had their name and address, others retrieved and it got back to them…they were lucky…and they needed some things as much of their clothing was ruined in the turmoil.

    OMGoodness…better get a wagon load of socks

    love this site!!!! Thanks

  3. We have been purchasing much new clothing for the past several years and storing it for when TSHTF and our money becomes worthless. Vas well, I doubt that other nations will be too willing to help by selling us clothing.
    We have hundreds of pair of Marino wool socks now, in various weights for all seasons of the year. We have enough new shoes to last us decades. I will never wear out all the shirts and pants we bought new.
    What we do is wait fit the sales where we find what we wear at 60-70% off! and then buy multiples of everything we need or anticipate we might need being self sufficient. That way we get 3x as much clothing for every dollar spent. We will NEVER have to buy clothing again.
    We pack ours in storage bins in an unused bedroom and keep the room dark.
    We have wool, fleece, cotton, ripstop fabrics, flannel, and rugged work wear also. We anticipate a grid down scenario and do not know if we will be at our rural home when this happens so we are planning for all contingencies.
    One thing I HIGHLY recommend that everyone buy is this…….at our Kohls or Target department stores they sell blankets that are a synthetic fabric called microPLUSH………NOT FLEECE.
    THESE BLANKETS ARE LITERALLY LIKE TOASTERS. If you watch at Kohls for their really good sales you can get a king size blanket for $25. Every family member should have one. Use your Christmas money to buy these…….you will never regret this purchase.

  4. When you store clothes for a long time it’s important to label the boxes! Trust me , it’s really unpleasant to search for specific item and don’t know where to search for it!

  5. Using plastic boxes for storing is only appropriate if you live somewhere with low humidity. Otherwise your clothes will get mold. I have really bad experience with this issue. Thank you for sharing such an useful information! Best regards!

  6. I buy, from Uline, Desi-packs that absorb any unwanted moisture. We use them when we vacuum pack food but they would be good for clothing as well. They come in different sizes and are suprisingly affordable.

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