Christmas is a busy time. There’s Christmas shopping, decorating the house, entertaining, and hosting out-of-town guests. Are you already worrying about the piles of washing that will be gathering in clothing hampers? Here are some smart tips for dealing with laundry over Christmas.
You know things are going to be hectic. Avoid laundry room crises. Check on detergent, fabric softener, dryer sheets, stain remover. Make sure you are fully stocked. You won’t have time to run out for supplies. Make sure it’s all organized for easy access.
Have an established pattern. Make sure everyone knows the pattern and his/her part. Get three or four laundry baskets. Use them to sort laundry each day: whites, light colors, dark colors, and delicates. When a basket gets full, do that load of laundry. Teach family members how to put their clothes in the right baskets. The older ones and your mate can learn how to throw in a load and start the machine.
Don’t put off laundry. You could run out of clean clothes. That sparkly tee that is just right to the office party may be buried in a load of coloreds. Fit this chore into cleaning, baking, shopping, and decorating.
Load the washer in the morning before you go to work and set it to wash an hour before you get home. That load will be ready to for the dryer. If you have a washer dryer combo, it is even simpler. Set for two hours before you get home and they will be dry and ready to fold. The folding part is also a good kids’ chore.
Take a page from the Boy Scout handbook. Whether you are hosting, at another’s party, or out on the town red wine stains, spilled cocktail sauce, or lobster bisque can make quite a mess. Don’t give stains a chance to set. Carry a stain removal pen or a small bottle of stain remover.
Keep your festive clothing wrinkle free by using a steamer or hanging them in a steamy bathroom while someone is having a shower.
Folding clothes and putting them away is time-consuming. But it will go much faster with a portable shirt folder board. Even the kids will want to get in on the fun. They’ve probably seen Sheldon use one on “The Big Bang Theory”.
As for putting them away? Place the folded clothes of each family member in its personalized basket and deliver it to the room for putting away.
While you are doing the laundry, complete other tasks like paying bills, menu planning, creating a grocery list, or answering emails.
Wash socks in drawstring bags to avoid missing socks. This makes pairing them a breeze too. Have each child place his socks in his personal drawstring back to eliminate sorting time.
Tie a small mesh bag inside the clothes hamper. This is handy for all delicates. Washed inside these bags, delicates don’t get snagged or ruined by catching on other garments.
Complete with stain remover, attach an annoying stains guide. Here is a good one: https://www.cleaninginstitute.org/cleaning-tips/clothes/stain-removal-guide#:~:text=Sponge%20the%20stained%20area%20with,Launder%20using%20liquid%20laundry%20detergent.
In your laundry room or in each child’s room, store laundry baskets.
Tack up single socks so your family can see them. Place this cork board in a conspicuous place. Rejoice when the pair is reunited. Take a photo for the cork board.
We tend to over wash denim and some other items. Some don’t ever wash those jeans! They put them in a plastic bag in the freezer. This kills bacteria. Wear them a few more times before washing. Not every outfit needs to go into the hamper at the end of the day.
If you fold items right away can save wrinkles.
Nowhere is it written that laundry is a one person job. Learn to delegate. Get a jobs board. Train your crew and then supervise.
You’ve just hosted a great party. All you want to do is go to bed and face the mess tomorrow. But there’s a problem: Those wine and gravy-stained napkins and will have stains set in overnight. This means at the least, more time will be spent scrubbing stains tomorrow. At worst, it means ruined linens.
And by the way? There is nothing wrong with asking your house guests to rinse and stack the dishwasher while you pop in a load of party linens laundry.
The holidays can be a very busy time but these laundry tips will help in dealing with laundry over Christmas.