Let’s just jump right into how you can make sure you never have a mountain of washing again! I don’t need to go into how annoying or overwhelming it is, because if you’re here, it’s because you’re all too familiar with the weight or feeling of burden those mounting piles of washing can cause.
Disclaimer: This is what has worked for me and since implementing this 3 months ago, I’ve never had a mountain of washing. I find this easy to maintain so I wanted to share. I’m not trying to tell you this is the only way.
So, what is the key to avoiding washing mountain? Well, it’s doing a load every day. Now, I know at first that sounds silly and impractical, but stick with me and I’ll explain how it’s going to make your life much easier. It has transformed mine. Also, if you work daily, I believe we can still make this work. It just takes a little more thinking. Maybe you load the washer at night and set it to start early in the morning (most washers have the option of a 9 hour delay). Or you could load it in the morning and do the same thing, so it’s freshly washed by the time you get home.
So, to start, I go through all the rooms in the house and empty the hampers in the morning, after I’ve served the kids their breakfast. That’s one hamper in our room, one in the bathroom and one in the kids room. Plus, I need to play a quick game of Marco Polo for the random socks or work clothes my husband has left out. If only the socks would yell ‘POLO’ back! I chuck them in the washer and use a sheet of Colour Catchers (An amazing lady I used to work with gave me the tip to cut the sheet into thirds and just use one third each wash -it’s worked great for her!). That’s right, I don’t separate colours. I chuck anything and everything in. I’ll even mix towels and clothes. I’ve been doing that for years and my towels have never gone crunchy. I will usually separate my good whites though and do an extra wash of those when there is enough of them. I also use Dirt, an environmentally friendly, clothes friendly and cost effective washing liquid. I’ve signed up to a subscription so I get sent three refills every couple of months. It’s super cheap, working out to be about 33c per load. Lastly, I chuck in a scoop of my scent booster (Epsom salts with 10x drops of whatever essential oil I’m loving, stored in a jar) which is a non-toxic, natural alternative to fabric softener. It’s kind on your washer and your clothes too!
Now, the clothes from yesterday’s wash are hanging on the airer (I don’t have a washing line, so my airer is in the laundry. But whatever you have is fine). So once the current wash has started, I’m going to take them off the airer and toss into the washing basket, ready to be folded. This means the airer is empty and ready for the wash that’s happening.
TIP: If any items of clothing usually hang up in your wardrobe, take them out of the washer and hang on a coat hanger right away and hook onto the airer or washing line. That way when it’s dry, you just transfer straight to the wardrobe! (PS. Avoid wooden hangers on white clothes. I learnt the hard way with my favorite white knit that the wood stain can soak into the fabric when wet)
I take the washing basket of clean, dry clothes into the living room and empty it onto the rug. I sometimes use my bed too. Then, I go through them all and fold them using the konmari method. I line them up per human in the house (eg. A row of my clothes, a row for each child, a row for the hubs).
Because I’m doing a load every day, it takes about 5-10 mins to fold it all. Not long hey! Then, I separate the rows into two washing baskets. One for our bedroom and one for the kids. As I load the basket, this is where I group the pants, shirts, pjs etc so they’re altogether. I take the basket into the room and simply transfer into the drawers. DONE!
Just like that, my hampers are completely empty and (until everyone has a bath or shower that night) there isn’t any dirty clothes in the house!