There are so many cutesy parts of the baby-planning process. From nursery wallpaper selection to coming up with the perfect baby name to  choosing baby shower colors and registering for all those sweet items that will get your home and heart ready, so much of baby prep is downright adorable. Picking out those precious little crib sheets that fit your aesthetic is just part of all the fun… until you realize all those darling fitted sheets now need to be folded and stored!

The only safe crib sheets are fitted sheets that have elastic around the edge to hug your mattress (which prevents the sheet from getting loose—loose blankets are a sleep safety no-no!), but that can make the simple task of folding a sheet feel like rocket science.

Sure, you don’t have to fold your crib sheets. There’s no shame buying a bin and tossing the balled-up crib sheets in there, or even smashing them onto a shelf in the linen closet. No one is going to stop you, or even care. But you might care. At a time that brings such a whirlwind of changes, order anywhere (including the linen closet) can spark a sense of peace. And as silly as it may sound, folding a crib sheet properly can make you feel cared for. When it comes time to change your sheets—whether you’re following your regular cleaning schedule or are dealing with a midnight soak—you’ll love turning to a stack of neatly folded crib sheets ready for their moment to shine.

Folding your crib sheets will not just serve you at bedding-change time though; when you have them neat and compact, it will be so much easier to store them. After all, folded crib sheets take up less space in a closet or basket—which is always a win.  

There are two methods to folding a fitted crib sheet perfectly, and both result in a neat and small, rectangular-shaped “package” that’s easy to store and grab. We’ll break both methods down in detail with photos so you can decide which style works better for you.  

How to Fold a Fitted Sheet: The Inside-Out Method

This sheet-folding method is the shorter of the two but requires a bit more coordination as you’ll be using one arm to hold and one to drape. 

Step 1: Turn the crib sheet inside out, elastic side up, long side facing you.

Step 2: Drape the farthest left corner of the crib sheet over the fingers of your left hand, with the short side of the fitted sheet hanging by your left side (toward your left thumb) and the long side of the sheet hanging over your left pinkie.

Step 3: Use your free hand to pick up the corner to your right and drape it over the corner in your left hand, right-side out. Line up the corner seams.

Step 4: Lay the sheet down on a table, elastic side up. Layer your remaining two corners the same way you’ve layered the first two.

Step 5: Smooth the sheet and tuck its edges to make a neat rectangle. The elastic will make a rainbow shape.

Step 6: Fold once in half, bringing the left side all the way over to meet the right and create a smaller rectangle. 

Step 7: Fold into thirds to create your neat, rectangular fitted crib sheet “package.”

How to Fold a Fitted Sheet: The L-Shape Fold Method

This method for folding a fitted crib sheet is slightly more involved than the first, but it’s easier to manage if you prefer to work symmetrically. Both ways to fold a fitted sheet land you with a smooth and compact fold, so it’s really a matter of which you like better!

Step 1: Lay the crib sheet flat with the elastic side facing up and all corners out so it is as close to a rectangle as possible.

Step 2: Stand along one of the sheet’s long sides. Slip your hands into the two corners closest to you, so that it looks like you are wearing oven mitts. The sheet corners should be “inside-out” on your hands. (Pro tip: Push your thumbs into the very corner of the sheets—this will make it easier to line up all your seams as you go.)

Step 3: Slide your corner-covered hands into the two opposite corners, so that each corner you’re holding is completely covered by its counterpart and the seams are inside each other. Once again, those thumbs-in-corners can help you make sure the sheet is lined up properly.

Step 4: Shake the sheet while holding it like this to get wrinkles out.

Step 5: Move your right hand over your left hand and use the sheet in your right hand to cover the corner you’re holding with your left. Now you should have all four corners stacked on top of one another covering your left hand.

Step 6: Lay the sheet down on a table with the elastic side up, smoothing the sheet out completely. The elastic will now be in an L shape.

Step 7: Fold the sheet vertically in half (if you’re folding a larger fitted sheet, you can fold into thirds)— a long, skinny rectangle. Smooth as you go.

Step 8: Now fold into thirds horizontally, starting from the top where elastic is layered underneath. This should create a small and compact fitted crib sheet package. 

…And you’re done! Just repeat with as many spare crib sheets you have, then stack them neatly in a basket, bin, drawer or on a closet shelf. Look at you, mastering those little (but important) life skills one by one! 

How to Fold a Bassinet Sheet

Before your baby moves to the crib, they’ll be in a bassinet! And those tiny, oval-shaped fitted sheets present another challenge when it comes to folding…unless you enlist this method for folding bassinet sheets:

Step 1: Turn your bassinet sheet inside out. Put your left hand into one of the rounded ends of the bassinet sheet.

Step 2: With your right hand, layer the other end over the sheet covering your left hand.

Step 3: Smooth and tuck the edges so the bassinet sheet is in the shape of an arc.

Step 4: Fold the rounded edge down and bottom edge up so the two folded edges meet in the middle (your sheet will be roughly rectangular).

Step 5: Fold the sheet into thirds vertically. 

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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider.