5 Tips To Speed Laundry
My washer broke. Well, not technically, because it still works. But something is very wrong. My clothes are being wrecked. It is putting black streaks of oil on random garments. This is true. And very upsetting. And random! Sometimes I can wash loads for weeks and everything is fine. And then, BAM! I wrecked another shirt. And a towel. And then, ALL MY WHITES! NOOOO!!! It's time for me to get a new washer. I thought I would update this post.
It sometimes takes me all day to get the laundry washed, dried, folded, + put away. Sometimes it is leftover for the next day. This is all on the sofa, mind you, so it will be sat on, jumped on, + all over the living room before I can get it put away.
While I can't structure every day to my standards, I can get more efficient in my laundry. I've come up with 5 tips to speed laundry. These are real tips, and when applied, my laundry is finished so quickly + effortlessly. It gives me a light, happy feeling.
1. Gather all the laundry from every room in the house.
This is important because when the laundry is actually finished, to better get that feeling of accomplishment, it's nice to see an empty laundry basket for a whole day (or at least a few hours!). I don't like doing laundry all day and having the basket still be full when I should be done. Some days it seems to keep regenerating more dirty clothes! This is because I didn't gather all the dirty clothes in the first place. It's all going to get washed eventually, so gather them all up.
2. As you sort, turn everything right side out before washing.
This helps save time when it comes to folding. Let folding be folding and not flipping shirts + leggings right-side-out. If I come across an inside-out shirt in the basket when I'm folding, I find myself moving around it and grabbing something else to fold because I don't feel like stopping my folding process to swap a shirt around. It's dumb, I know, but it's what I do. Turning everything around before it's washed speeds up my folding process.
3. Swap the loads as soon as they are done.
This tip is a major time saver. If your washer + dryer are in the basement, consider setting a timer. Or, just use a timer anyway. My wash takes about 40 minutes. Sometimes I use the washer as a timer itself (mine is right off my kitchen). I will challenge myself to see how many other tasks I can accomplish before the wash is done. Besides, the sooner those clothes are out of the wash, the sooner they can dry, + folded, + put away.
4. Fold WARM clothes.
I bet everyone enjoys folding warm clothes more than they like folding not-warm clothes. A basket of laundry fresh out of the dryer is light. It is warm. Everything is soft + wrinkle free. I love folding warm clothes. And yet, this is the hardest one for me to actually do. If someone timed me on folding warm clothes vs. folding not-warm clothes, I'm sure there would be less time spent folding the warm clothes. I don't have to shake them out like I do if they sit in the basket.
When I fold I make a pile of socks and match them all when my basket is empty. And I also stack all the shirts, spread out face down, and fold them last too. Folding shirt after shirt goes pretty fast. When we perform the same task repeatedly, we naturally do it faster. Plus, once all the pants are folded the basket is almost empty. It's easier to quickly fold what's left.
NOTE: If you can fold warm clothes, you are truly a SUPER MOM and you deserve a badge or at least a fresh cup of coffee. It's so nice to wake up with yesterday's laundry finished!
5. Put laundry away after each load.
Even if the laundry pile is small, put it away. Even if you have 3 more loads to go, put away what is folded. There is no point in folding it twice, and that is what will happen when it's left on the sofa. Maybe you have a nice big laundry room, or an extra table where you can fold your laundry, and this isn't an issue for you. I still suggest putting away clean laundry as soon as you're done folding. When you finish a task completely you create good habits. The more good habits you do, the better you feel. Accomplishing tasks is another way to release that dopamine. Make yourself feel great!
So, gather all the laundry, get it right side out + sort it. Swap the loads as soon as they are done + fold them warm! Then put them away as soon as the basket is empty. I hope these tips help you speed through your laundry. If I actually stick to them, they really do work for me.
Note: I put all the laundry away myself. I know some of you have your kids put it away, and I am just not there yet. I don't like to have to fold it more than once, and I don't like yelling at my kids to put it away. It takes way less effort to just do it myself. I'm hoping they will pick up my cleanliness habits through osmosis.
There is another tip that comes to mind regarding laundry: Empty the closets. If closets are too crammed, then stuff doesn't get put away. We don't need that many clothes anyway. Think of how many outfits people had in their closets 100 or even 50 years ago. If you really want to speed up laundry, start eliminating some of it by getting rid of unnecessary things. If the drawers open easily + there is space for the clean clothes, it will be easier to put them away.