A few years ago I had an a-ha moment during an organizing workshop at a blog conference I was attending. During the presentation the lovely speaker, Beth, discussed her laundry system and it was one of those moments where I thought, now gosh why didn’t I think of that.
In order to get the full picture though of how much time and frustration this particular system saves me, let me walk you through how I use to do laundry. Perhaps you can relate. Each of my kids has a hamper in their bedrooms and on laundry day they’d each bring their basket downstairs and I would start the chore of sorting the piles of laundry into whites and darks. Then when it was all washed I’d start the sorting process all over again as I sorted each child’s clothing back into their individual baskets. It took forever and I was constantly putting it off because I always felt like the laundry had to get done all at once so everyone would have a full basket to return to their rooms. Finding a big chunk of time like that to devote to this task was tough.
Now with the wisdom I gleaned from my friend Beth, I can honestly say my new laundry method has changed my life. Each child still has a laundry basket in their room but rather than do everyone’s laundry all at once, I do one child’s load at a time. In other words, I throw their whole basket of laundry into one load WITHOUT separating the whites and colors. Gasp!
No sorting laundry!!
Can you even believe it? I certainly couldn’t.
I thought for sure the colors would run but they didn’t. In fact the laundry came out just fine….I just add about a 1/2 cup of vinegar to each load to help set the colors and prevent the colors from running. I’ve yet to wreck a piece of clothing doing it this way. Although note of caution wash new red items and denim separately the first time.
I’ve eliminated the entire sorting process all together. Gone. As in I no longer spend any time trying to figure out whose socks are whose. I must say, sorting clothes is highly overrated :)
Each kid usually has one full load of laundry a week and the beauty of this system is that it makes it very easy to teach and have them do their own laundry. So not only have I gotten rid of the sorting process but, with the big kids at least, the folding process as well. Sweet! Occasionally my daughter will have a dress to be washed or some other delicate and we do hold those out and wash them in a separate load. Usually those are so few and far between though that it’s so not a big deal. I typically don’t buy high maintenance clothing especially things that need to be ironed. Ironing is also so overrated :)
Towels and sheets each get their own loads as well, as needed.
Using this system for us means laundry is no longer a huge burden in our household and thankfully no longer an all day chore.
Try it, you just might like it!
Do you have a laundry system that works for you or is laundry an ongoing hassle in your house?