Now that we have twins, it seems that everyday is laundry day in our house. Laundry is something that everyone has to do and everyone has their own way of doing it. Here are my methods and things I enjoy.
- My clothes line. I adore using my clothes line. It makes everything smell so fresh and clean. Plus it is a great stain remover. The sunshine does wonders for things like alphaghetti stains and the like. To take out the stiffness after things are done drying I pop them in the dryer for 2 minutes with my dryer balls. I take the chance every day to put something out on the line if it is not raining. Something always needs to be washed. Air drying is much better for your clothes also, the heat from the dryer breaks down the fibers in your clothing causing them to lose shape much faster.
- Stain treating. I try to handle stains right away or once the day is done and the kids are dressed for bed. My weapon of choice is a sunlight bar. I take a few moments to scrub out the stains then hang them up on the shower bar to wait for the next load of laundry. Handling things right away or at least before you put them in the wash helps get rid of the stains much easier. We all spend good money on our clothes we should take care of them and help prolong their life, don’t let a spot ruin your favorite top.
- Use cold water if you aren’t already. It really does help save you money and your clothes also.
- I make my own laundry soap now. It is really easy and doesn’t take very long. Here is the recipe that I am currently enjoying.
- 3.1 oz bar Ivory soap (Ivory is chosen because it’s all natural. You may use a soap of your choice)
- 1 cup 20 Mule Team Borax
- ½ cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
- 5 Gallon container
- Pot large enough to hold 5 cups of water
- Long stirring stick/spoon (for 5 gallon container)
Shave the soap into small strips and place in the pot with 5 cups of water. Bring the water just shy of a boil and stir until the soap is completely melted. When the soap is just about melted, pour 3 gallons of hot water into the 5-gallon container and let it sit until the soap in the pot is totally melted. Once all of the soap shavings are melted, pour the mixture into the 5-gallon container and stir.
Once the soap and water are thoroughly stirred, add the ½ cup pf washing soda and stir until dissolved. Once the washing soda is dissolved, pour in the cup of borax and stir again until dissolved.
Optional: Essential Oils for fragrance. If you like fragrant detergent, now is when you can add a few drops of your favorite essential oils.
Now you’ve got a huge container of hot soapy looking water. Cover the container, place it somewhere out-of-the-way and let it sit overnight. Once it’s cooled it will gel. It will not gel uniformly so it will be lumpy and watery. It may not be very attractive, but it works. It’s best find smaller storage containers for convenience.
Usage: ½ cup per laundry load is adequate to clean your clothes. This homemade laundry detergent works well in high-efficiency washing machines since it is low sudsing.
One word of caution, if using a high-efficiency machines: Before pouring the lumpy gel into the detergent receptacle, stir it to break up the lumps. Very large lumps may not fully dissolve, stirring the detergent with a spoon, pencil, or whatever you have available (or your finger), works fine.
- To continue the use and wear of your clothing, try to mend and patch up any areas that need attention. Pick up some fray stop to keep holes in knees from spreading before you put a patch on. Heat n Bond is a great tool. For kids too you can make some fun shaped patches also. Seams that have fallen out can easily be sewn up as well. This in the past was something I used to get my mother to do when she visited, I always had a pile of mending for her, but now I am learning to handle these things myself. I only leave the tricky things for her if I feel it is something I couldn’t do myself. Then I hopefully get her to teach me when she is visiting.
- You can also use patches and glue on gems or jewels to jazz up some older clothing you may be passing down or have received as a pass down. Then it makes it special for your child and fun to wear.
- When your clothes have finally had it and are no good to pass on to someone else, look for other uses rather than the trash. Rags is always a good first choice. Denim can be saved for future patches or even turn it in to something neat if you have good sewing skills or a friend who would kindly make something for you. A jean purse, a quilt, or even turn a pair of jeans into a knee-length skirt.
Well that’s all I can think of for now. Try to keep your laundry products environmentally responsible. My washer buzzer has gone off now so I must get my clothes out on the line to soak up that nice sunshine.