In my last post about laundry, I talked about how to tame the mountainous laundry pile and catch up when you are overwhelmed, if you haven’t already, you can read it here! Since then, I decided to tweak the routine slightly and found that the whole process is now amazingly streamlined. In this post, I’ll take you through the simple family laundry hack, which has helped me keep on top of the laundry pile!
I kept the same structure in place which I explained in detail in my first laundry post:
- Wash every single day without fail
- Then dry fold put away without fail
- Iron it if you can!
The central principle of my brand new laundry hack is to focus on washing by each person. is a very simple little tweak but I find it truly does make things so much simpler when it comes to family wash day and putting everything away.
I decided to start by putting a Small Wicker Laundry Basket in my kid’s rooms and asking them to drop their stuff in there.
Now kids are fickle as we know, my 6yr old loved using his basket. However, my 10yr old still preferred to drop her laundry on her floor, but with perseverance and nagging, she got into the habit of popping it into the basket, and realised that if it was not in the basket, it didn’t get washed!
To learn how I taught my kids how to help with the chores read here.
It did take me quite a while to remember to check in the kid’s rooms for laundry rather than in one central laundry basket but after several extra trips up the stairs, I soon got used to it!
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The Family Laundry Hack
- Get your kids to use their own washing basket , put it in their room
If you haven’t got space, hang one fro a hook on the door.
it will keep their room much tidier and you will find that you are not picking up dirty washing from the floor all the time!
- Take one person’s basket downstairs and wash their load only.
Don’t be tempted to put anyone else’s washing in with their load, this will be difficult at first but you’ll soon get used to it!
- If there isn’t a full load , add a towel , but there will probably be plenty to wash!
Don’t wash until there is a full load add a towel, dressing gown or that persons bedding if you need to.
- Dry ,fold and put it away immediately.
The beauty of this process is that you’ve only got one room to put the laundry away and absolutely no sorting through the family wash matching socks etc
- Iron it immediately if possible
Five minutes ironing for one person each day saves a few hours ironing a pile of stuff for the family on a Sunday night!
Are you bamboozled by all those crazy laundry symbols? I’ve made some super simple laundry guides to explain each one of those confusing little instructions, and you can grab them free by heading over to this post!
The benefit of doing the laundry hack every day is:
- There is no sorting to do.
- The basket you have washed and dried gets put away into one person’s room unless it needs ironing.
- Iron upstairs and put it away straight away, this helps stop laundry hanging around downstairs waiting to be folded and put away.
- Ironing the family laundry straight away prevents the massive ironing mountain and ensures that the kids have school uniforms and sports kits always on hand.
- There is no emergency ironing.
- I wash my spouses and my clothes together as they are going to be put away in the same room.
How to use the family laundry hack when you work or are away from home during the day.
- On the days you work, or if you’re going to be out all day, put the laundry in the machine at night and set it on a delayed wash, so it finishes when you wake up, then it will not sit in the washing machine getting wrinkled and fusty all night.
- Some energy providers have cheap electricity at night so that you may save money washing before dawn!
Most washing machines have a delay start option, if not you could use a timer.
- Hang it to dry outside or tumble it before going out to work,
- When you come home, fold it and put it away
- If anything is for ironing, iron it! It should take less than 15 mins!
- Put it away immediately! It is easier if you can iron upstairs.
Laundry stays organised if you deal with it daily.
Extra loads, towels or bedding, should be done at the weekend between ferrying the kids around!
Weekend laundry should follow the routine of wash, dry, put away, iron.
This routine is typical for our family of four, and you may need to adjust this simple routine to suit your family size.
Assign each member of the family their own colour socks, there are then no lost socks or lost hours trying to match into pairs!
Family laundry FAQ
Every house is different, some people do a big family wash day at the weekends, but if your children are older having it washed separately is one of the better family laundry ideas for large families.
I started to teach my daughter to was laundry from the age of about 11 years old . I started by asking her to bring her laundry down. then a few weeks later taught her to separate the darks from the whites . Then once she’d mastered that I then taught her how to use the machine . She can help out with her washing when I’m super busy. she also folds and puts away her own clothes when they are dry.
A child of either sex should be taught laundry and other life skills from a young age. How to manage family laundry is a skill both boys and girls should be taught. They will soon learn that’s there’s a lot goes into the same day laundry service they expect when they’ve forgotten to give you their smelly PE kit!
break them in gently with their only laundry before you expect them to wash family laundry.
Some laundry services sometimes do pick up and delivery on large items like duvets and horse blankets it might be worth checking with your local laundromat business to see if they can offer this laundry service.
Otherwise, soak the duvet in the bath with some soap flakes, then rinse and allow to drip over the clothes maiden in the bath. one most of the water has ran out you can hand it on the maiden outside to dry.
As kids get older their clothes don’t get as dirty especially if they are only wearing them around the house . Encourage them to get more than one wear out of each item of clothing.
I like the Ikea cubes to hold ironing and laundry. It keeps everything neat and gives you an extra work surface to store washing baskets etc on.
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