The relationship a parent has with laundry is far worse than it ever had been before parenthood. Little did we know it would take the same amount of any part-time job, just to pick the clothes up from the floor, place them in the washer, drying them separately (or, together because who wants to separate all of those itty-bitty baby socks due to their colours), and folding them into organize piles. Even with the addition of one child, the amount of laundry will more than double considering how often they soil and dirty their clothing.
Because of all the hassle that laundry in itself produces, we have compiled 10 tips and tricks that will help you overcome some of the hurdles that your new laundry regime may bring alone. Read ahead to become inspired for your next load! And by "load" we mean "loads" because it's rare you'll have only one.
10 SAFETY PIN SMALL SOCKS
Small socks are incredibly easy to loose. Not only do they magically disappear in the dryer when they're thrown in with other, clean clothing, but folding them can be a task in itself. Little socks won't be your worry for much time, though within those first few years it feels like a lifetime. So, here's a simple hack to ensure you will not loose any tiny socks during their laundry time: attach each dirty pair with a safety pink before they're washed and dried. Bam! You'll be sure never to loose their pair every again.
9 SEPARATE CHILDREN'S FROM PARENT'S
It can be difficult to separate dry, clean laundry once it's all cleaned together. Before you clean your family's laundry all in one bunch, separate the children's laundry from the parent's. It's easier to fold and put away when you know whose is whose. This step just simplifies the process for when it's all dry and ready to fold.
Separating the children's laundry will also help you prioritize who needs clothing the fastest. Perhaps you're down on underwear but the children are fine. Luckily, you've separated the adults so you know who's to fold first.
8 DEDICATE TO "NOTHING NEW"
Laundry sure does pile up when you have children. Gifts often happen to be clothing, as friends and family know it's an easy and useful offer; however, children often never wear what they're given. Or, the clothing items, with tags still attached, are either sold, donated or re-gifted to another child. So, it could be an attractive decision for your family to purchase no new clothing for a period of time. Not only is this environmentally friendly, but it will lower your laundry duties if you're wearing less clothing.
7 BUY THE SAME SOCKS FOR THE KIDS
Yet another sock hack- purchase the exact same pairs of socks; especially if you have a big family. Have two separate baskets- one for children and one for adults. Whether you buy in bulk online or at a big department store, purchasing the same socks not only gives your the opportunity to save money, but a lot of time.
This way, you won't be struggling to match their partner up each laundry night and you also don't have to stress over what's under your shoes if you're not matching.
6 HAVE THEIR OWN FOLDING BASKETS
If you have more than one child, it's important to have their own designated basket where you've placed folded laundry. This way, it's much easier to bring to their rooms for them to put away, age permitting.
When you have laundry organized by child, the entire process can go by much easier than when it's all in one pile. Laundry does not have to be a dreaded task that occurs once a week. It can be easier with practiced skills which will turn into natural habit.
5 INSIST THEY HELP ORGANIZE
It's an incredible thing to have your child help with tasks- even laundry. At as early at 2 years old, they can begin to sort their clothing. Whether this means sorting their t-shirts from underwear, from pyjamas to denim items, having your child sort their clothing will make it easier on you, the parent, while they also learn some hands-on skills which will encourage an independent, growing mind. If you begin these hands-on helping moments at an early age, they won't feel much like a chore when they grow older; but more of a contribution towards day-to-day activities to help the home.
4 DON'T BOTHER WITH DIRTY HAMPERS
Dirty hampers can be a waste of time if you have multiple around your home. Often, children won't even make it to their hamper, and leave their dirty laundry on their washroom floors, bedroom chairs and even the kitchen counter. Honestly, children will leave their laundry anywhere they can. So, if you teach them young to leave dirty laundry inside of the laundry machine, this may just be easier for everyone in the end. Unless you are meticulous with sorting darks from lights and materials from one another, this tip will help you immensely in the long run.
3 BUILD YOUR OWN SHOOT
A laundry shoot may be a great trick if you're not inclined to teach your children to throw any dirty laundry in the laundry machine; especially if you have yet to move the clean laundry into the dryer.
That wouldn't be good...regardless, a laundry shoot assists in making the actual, physical task of bringing your dirty laundry to the room easier on you and your children. Whether you install a complex shoot to organize the laundry for when it arrives to the room, or you have to separate when it's down there, a laundry shoot is a great option to speed up the time it takes to get the laundry into the machine.
2 DON'T WASH DENIM (UNLESS NECESSARY)
Denim washing may be a thing in the past. Have you ever heard of raw denim? Well, if you haven't, it's a process where denim is not pre-washed or pre-dyed and is at its most organic form. This allows the denim to fit and form to your body. It's a very dedicated and personal experience with denim. Whether you choose to go with a raw selvaged pair or good old distressed, cheap pair from a fast-fashion department store, denim may not need to be washed as frequently as you think unless drastically dirtied. Do you research, but you may be able to leave your denim out of the wash quite often.
1 LIMIT THEIR CHOICES
The more clothing you own, the more laundry you'll like to do. Children have an abundance of clothing. They may, also, soil themselves from time to time depending on their age. They may also change their minds about outfits and choose a new dress to wear because they simply feel like it. We are not trying to fizzle out their creative energies, but we are trying to show the importance of how less can be more; especially with "things". So, lessen your children's choice of clothing and you'll have less time spent doing laundry and more time focusing on the things you truly enjoy.