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My teenage step­son lives with us part time – a set-up I en­joy very much, but with one reser­va­tion. He is the mas­ter of the ‘ floor drop’, ie, the no­tion of hang­ing clothes up is to­tally alien to him, so they lie heaped on the floor moul­der­ing away. I am loathe to tip­toe into his room when he’s out, pick up his jeans and T-shirts and put them away in his wardrobe for him, but I can’t bear to see them ly­ing there. What to do?

An­swer in brief: make hang­ing up clothes cool

The ways of the teenage boy are in­deed mys­te­ri­ous. Whereas you take plea­sure in rows of neatly hung jeans, to him that idea is be­yond con­sid­er­a­tion. Clothes are to be worn, then dis­carded un­til they need wash­ing ( prefer­ably by some­one else). But it’s good to en­cour­age him to take re­spon­si­bil­ity. Try prop­ping a vin­tage wooden lad­der by his bed­side (or buy­ing a ready-made ver­sion, left) to drape his clothes on. It will take less ef­fort than open­ing a wardrobe and find­ing a hanger, and may just per­suade him to do it.

Hub Lad­der Rack by Matt Carr, £80, um­bra.com

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