A Laundry List of Random Clean Thoughts
While cranking through a few loads of laundry the other night, I got to thinking about how, when and why we wash clothes.
My clothing care practices have made a few tectonic shifts over the decades. In my 20's, with a limited wardrobe and limited access to laundry facilities, everything got washed weekly at the coin-op, whether it needed cleaning or not. Sometimes it really, really needed it. In my 30's and early 40's, working in a more corporate office environment (before Business Casual had taken complete hold) meant lots and lots of drycleaning. I remember reading one woman's advice from her father to always buy two pairs of pants for each suit, as they'd be cleaned more often and wear out more quickly than the jacket. Over the past few years, I've migrated my wardrobe toward washable items, to the point that now probably less than 10% of what I own *must* be dry cleaned (and I wear those pieces rarely now).
I've read that in the US, we wash/clean our clothing entirely too often. And washing, not wearing, is what causes clothing to "wear out." Though I went through a phase of believing that everything had to be washed after every wear (barring sweaters and outerwear), I've mostly abandoned that notion. I try to wash my clothes only when absolutely necessary, almost always in cold water, and NEVER a hot dryer (only our cleaning rags get that treatment). And I use only 1/4 to 1/2 the recommended amount of detergent.
I've also read about campaigns urging people not to wash their jeans, but freeze them instead. OK, that's taking things a bit too far. O_o
A lot of clothing marked "hand wash" can actually be washed in a lingerie bag in the washer on the gentle cycle, then hung or laid flat to dry.
Not long ago, a drip of salad dressing that landed on my "continental shelf" would require a wash of the entire garment. But this little miracle product soaks up greasy spots on many fabrics, and they can be brushed right off.
|Janie Stick. This is also great to carry when traveling.|
I'm still murky on how pounding clothes on a rock is supposed to get them clean.
I can't be bothered with liquid fabric softener, but am a fan of these:
|Bounce dryer sheets|
I HATE folding laundry, but LOVE the feeling of having everything clean, folded and put away. Confession: I don't iron my cotton sheets.
What about you...any favorite laundry anecdotes to share??