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The Secret of Folding a Suit Coat

To learn why this page is part of this web site, see the article “What does Folding a Suit have to do with IT?” in the July, 2003 post.

As I said in the newsletter, the secret of folding a suit coat is to make sure the wrinkles end up in places where wrinkles won’t be noticed. On this page I’ll show you how to fold a suit coat using this secret approach.

First, let me say that I’m going to describe this from a male point of view because I’ve never had the experience of folding a woman’s suit for packing. I know that a woman’s suit might include a skirt instead of pants, but otherwise I’m pretty sure that this secret applies to women’s suits as well.
Everybody starts pretty much the same way: by folding his pants over the hanger, like this. (Women, I guess you do pants or a skirt here.)


Next you put the coat on the hanger over the pants. But most people who haven’t learned the secret do it like this.

To see this a little better, let me move the sleeves out of the way.There is where most people go wrong. They put the coat on the hanger the way they wear it, with the coat buttons lined up with the button holes. They think that this approach will minimize wrinkles, but it usually just puts extra wrinkles along the sides of the coat, and it makes it fairly likely that you’ll get wrinkles on the front of the coat as well.

Here’s how to fold the coat instead. Fold the front of the coat all the way over, with one side of the coat (on the left side of this picture) snug up against the pants.

Now fold the other side of the coat across, snug up against the pants on the other side (on the right side of this picture).

Now fold one of the sleeves down across the front of the coat and straighten out the sleeve. There will be wrinkles under the armpit, but people won’t see them. You may also get a few wrinkles at the shoulder, but they’ll look natural.

Do the same thing with the other sleeve.

I like to put a plastic dry cleaning bag over the coat and pants at this point before I pack them, but that’s optional. I’ll leave it off in the next few steps so you can see what I’m doing.


Put the coat and pants into the suitcase so that the coat will fold backwards instead of forwards. If you get wrinkles they’ll be on the back where they’re less likely to be noticed.


Fasten the coat in (I’m using a Rollaboard® Suiter suitcase here).

Fold it up.
Fasten the straps to secure the folded coat.

Rollaboard is a registered trademark of TravelPro® USA

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