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Ten Laundry Tips

10.  1/4 cup of vinegar in your rinse cycle works wonders in keeping your clothes soft.

9.  Always check pockets.  There is nothing worse than opening the dryer to find silly putty on your entire load of clothes.  (Don’t try to sleep with silly putty in your bed either.  Body warmth + bedding and pajamas + silly putty = DISASTER. BTW Silly Putty has been officially banned from our home.

8.  If you use dryer sheets, cut them in half. You will never know the difference in your clothes…. just in your pocket book.

7.  Sorting clothes is a great chore for little kids.  One of the first “jobs” I gave my kids was sorting dirty laundry.  They loved it.  Yes, you do need to do a bit of fixing later, but it’s well worth the trouble.  I like to think it helps with their decision making skills!

6.  Don’t have too many clothes.  If you have less clothing you are less likely to allow large amounts of laundry to build up. You’ve got the motivation to get it done or your kids will have nothing to wear. This is also a great help for keeping drawers and closets under control.

5.  Fold clothes when the dryer stops.  It’s so much easier to fold clothes when they are warm.  Plus it’ll make you happy to fold warm, fresh smelling clothes in the winter.

4. Try to rinse stains out when they are fresh.  They are so much easier to get out.

3. Invest in a Folding Drying Rack or a clothesline.  I have a folding rack and LOVE it.  I use it to dry all my delicates and many of my clothes (anything we’re not in a big hurry for).  I pin clothes to it just like a line, or use the “wings” to layout my sweaters.  It puts humidity in the air, saves money, and is great for the environment.  Air drying will also extend the life of your clothes.  I especially like to use it for any clothes I don’t want to shrink.  During use, I set up my rack in my family room (next to the laundry room) and even though it’s very visible I don’t mind it.  When it’s not in use, it folds up and fits next to my washing machine.  I bought my Polder brand rack at Costco for $15 dollars.  One day I may invest in a wider rack, like the Moerman they sell on Amazon, to make it easier to dry wider towels, etc.

2.  Have a mending basket where any clothes with missing buttons or holes can be kept until they are mended.  Set aside a day, just like our grandmothers did, for mending.  Clothes are so expensive, it really pays to mend.

1.  If you have a family, do laundry every day.  One load a day can keep laundry from getting overwhelming.

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15 Responses to “Ten Laundry Tips”

  • Jill:

    We keep two laundry baskets in each of our bedroom closets, so we sort items right as they get put in the laundry. Works for us! :)

  • Great tips. I bought my wooden drying rack at an Amish craft fair. It’s almost 5 feet tall with lots of rungs. Sure wish I had bought 2!

  • Great suggestions! One thing: if you’re already adding vinegar to your rinse cycle, you can skip the dryer sheets since the vinegar acts like a fabric softener. We haven’t used dryer sheets for months now and our clothes aren’t staticky because of the vinegar.

  • I’ll have to try the vinegar in the rinse. Great laundry tips!

  • Beth:

    Those are great tips! You are one of the few people I’ve heard talk about keeping the number of clothes you own to a minimum. I have a rule that all my clothes should fit into one dresser and one small closet. That doesn’t count the sweaters/sweatshirts that go in the box under the bed. I find I wear my favorites all the time anyway, even if I have a lot of clothes!

    My boys have also been doing their own laundry since they were middling elementary school kids (they are now teens). While it doesn’t get folded quite as nicely as I would fold it, it has been a great tool in responsibility.

  • Anne:

    Thank you! — I’ll try the vinegar rinse today, and my rotary cutter is going to smush through a whole bunch of laundry sheets — and maybe the vinegar means I won’t have to buy any more of them (fingers crossed).

    I have three clothes lines hung close to the ceiling in our craft/playroom, and I dry clothes there in the winter. Granted, I run the clothes through the “touch up” cycle in the dryer afterward to soften them up (sometimes line-drying makes them stiff) but that’s 10 minutes versus more than an hour of electricity.

  • Lori:

    Excellent tips. Super ideas. I have a folding rack and a clothes line with wheels in the garage. The garage has an 11 foot ceiling and is heated to 10C or 50F, because my DH works in there.

    Keeping clothes to a minimum is one of the best ideas. We started out that way, acumulated too many clothes and now are getting the so-so items out because we don’t wear them enough to justify the space they use.

  • Tina:

    I’ve been using vinegar in the rinse for months now and it is fabulous! It makes the clothes smell so clean. I use an entire cup for large loads. It makes the biggest difference in towels and keeps them from getting that mildew smell. Thanks for the tips!

  • Fatdoglane:

    Love the tips! I do a little of all of them in my own kinda way :) I have a window in my laundry room and I used iron scroll-ie, pretty, plant hangers for curtain rod holders. I hung my valance from the hook areas closest to the window and then hung another curtain rod about 10 inches out from the window. (so now I have a double curtain rod) I hang my clothes on plastic hangers directly from the washer, then hang them on the curtain rod. The warmth from the window dries the clothes in half a day and they’re already on a hanger, ready for the closet AND they have a nice shape :) :) I used to have a terrible time with sour towels…especially with HE washers, they are notorious for holding that mildew smell in their system. I’ve finally got a system down that has yet to give me the sours and always gives me clean, soft, wonderful smelling towels! 1. Always wash towels on hot, hot. 2. Use about 2 tbsp of clorox color safe bleach instead of laundry soap. 3. Use fab soft., it’s o.k.! 4. Use the extra rinse cycle. 5. (a given) always dry towels thoroughly asap after washing. This method even buys me an overnight forgetten load as long as it isn’t 90* outside and I can wash my towels with soap. I always hated the idea of skipping soap to avoid sour towels :)

  • Terri:

    Ladies…set those folding racks up outside if you don’t have a clothesline. Nothing like it.

  • Rebecca:

    I’ve tried adding vinegar to the rinse cycle, then drying them pinned to a drying rack the only thing is my clothes came out stiff and a little crunchy. Should I toss them in the dryer for a few minutes before they hit the drying rack?

    • Calli:

      I actually throw too stiff clothes into the dryer for about 5 minutes after they are all dry. It softens them right up.

  • SILLY PUTTY- ARG! My grandkids were visiting for several weeks. When they left, I found a big wad of silly putty stuck between the carpet and the throw rug. Hate that stuff!

  • Amanda:

    I love that you use white vinegar and shared the tip! My friend and I started a laundry service from our homes and swear by it. It not only acts as a natural fabric softner but it saves money while helping keep your HE washing machine clean at the same time! We don’t have the time to line dry anything but we did find if you toss a couple tennis balls into the dryer it cuts drying time by about 25%. It also helps fluff bulky items at the same time. Great post!
    http://www.laundrycare.biz

  • Chaney:

    Silly Putty = BANNED from our house also. It’s like GUM, people!

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