My Super Simple Laundry System

My super simple laundry system

You can avoid a lot of household tasks! Also, you can eat all your meals out;  groceries delivered to your home;  even someone else can cut the grass for you. But unless you have a housekeeper with a lot of time on her hands, you will probably have to deal with the laundry sooner or later.

laundry system

 

In our family of 6, we produce a lot of laundry.

Our washing machine has faithfully chugged for many thousands of hours. After trying out many options and tweaking the process, I finally have a laundry system that gets the job done with a minimum of fuss.

Check out my new Laundry Lessons digital course here!

My super-simple laundry system

Laundry Setup

  1. The two children’s bedrooms each have their own laundry basket. My husband and I each have our own as well. The kids are responsible for putting their dirty clothes in their baskets.
  2. There is another laundry sorter in the laundry room. If an article of clothing gets dirty, we can quickly throw it in this sorter and it will be washed with the next load. This sorter also holds overflow laundry if there is more than can be done in our 1-2 loads/day.
  3. A large cloth shopping bag is used to collect soiled cloth napkins and cleaning rags (we keep our kitchen mostly paper-free). This keeps these items separate from the rest of the wash.
  4. An expandable wall-mounted drying rack and a disappearing bar for hangers are conveniently mounted next to the washing machine.

Laundry room accessory - wall-mounted bar to hold hanging items. This is a clever DIY addition to a great laundry room.

 

Laundry Schedule

Days are assigned to family members:

Monday – 2 older boys. The two older boys handle all their own laundry themselves. I just have to remind them to put it in the dryer and put it away.

Tuesday – my laundry, my husband’s laundry (although he frequently does his own – what a guy!)

Wednesday – 2 younger boys

Thursday – whites, any linens

Friday – catch-up

Saturday – catch-up

 Also, read what to know before buying a new washer! A great way to buy exactly what you need.

Laundry system

Every morning (except Monday when the boys do their own laundry), I throw in the day’s assigned load in the morning.

White items are pulled out of the baskets and left in the laundry room sorter to wait for the next white load.

Before quiet time, I switch it to the dryer. I will take it out and put it away during our chore time in the afternoon. If necessary, I start another load at quiet time which will get folded in the evening (gulp – or sit in the basket for a day or two until I get sick of stepping around it we get to it).

Cloth diapers for my toddler are washed about every other evening and dried late that night or the next morning.

If something has gotten wet and needs to be washed sooner rather than later, we’ll put it in the laundry sorter and it will get washed with the next load.

Bath towels are washed once a week and sheets every other week or as needed.

creating a laundry system

The advantages of this laundry system are:

  1. Very little sorting needed. Honestly, this was my biggest problem with laundry before. If you wash everyone’s laundry together, once it’s clean, you have to fold 20 different piles and put it away in 4 or 5 different places. With this simple laundry system, we can just fold all the laundry for 1 or 2 people and bring it to their closet to put away. It seems quicker that way.
  2. Laundry doesn’t pile up (too much). As long as we do at least 1 or 2 loads a day, we never have a mountain of dirty laundry to wash or a pile of clean laundry to put away. Our laundry room is quite small so there’s not room for Mt. Washmore to grow too large.
  3. Doing 1 or 2 loads a day doesn’t seem as daunting as 5 or more if you let them pile up – I am more likely to get to it if I know it’s a small-ish job.
  4. Since the big kids do their own laundry from start to finish, I only have to worry about half of the laundry for the house – big difference from doing laundry for 6 people!

We average about 10 loads a week plus 4 for the diapers. (no more cloth diapers now). If you are looking for more laundry tips, make sure you read my 7 tips to tame the laundry pile up.

We have also taken some steps to keep our laundry load in check.

  • The kids have plenty of clothing but they are definitely running low on favorite items if it’s been a week since their last load.
  • With 2 kids sharing each closet, we don’t have a ton of room for clothing either. It makes sense to limit the amount of clothing each boy has.
  • The boys will wear jeans more than once as long as they pass the “sniff” test 🙂 The same goes for sweaters and hoodies. Pajamas can be worn a couple of times as well.

Want more laundry help?  I’ve got you!

 

Check out my Laundry Lessons digital course here!

Laundry is an unfortunate fact of life, but it doesn’t have to be a terrible burden.

What is your favorite laundry tip?

Photos by Public Domain Photosmaizers

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25 thoughts on “My super simple laundry system”

  1. We have a sorting system in the laundry room, too. Five stand-up hampers along the wall, one for each: whites, colors, darks, jeans and towels. Everyone knows to sort their dirty clothes each day and we usually do 1-2 loads a day. Sometimes more, some days we skip it completely – but I never spend an entire day with a daunting load of laundry! I’ve also started using white vinegar in the wash and we don’t end up with that “funky” smell if the clothes do happen to sit a little too long in the washing machine. And no need for fabric softener!

    Reply
  2. The key is to find the system that works for your family for the current season of life. Our system is similar (maybe it’s the 4 kids thing?): baskets in the bedrooms, oldest boy washes/drys the boys’ laundry, all children put away their own clothes – including the 4 yr old. Ideally we are done with laundry by Monday night but lately it’s extended into Tuesday. We do about 6-7 loads a week, not counting sheets.

    Our washer/dryer are in the basement which means I won’t be able to do the laundry after the baby comes in May (no stairs for c-sections or carrying heavy loads). So all non-kid laundry will probably switch the weekends when my hubby is home to handle it. 🙂

    Reply
  3. I am a mom of 4 (now adult) children, and we always had a similar laundry system. My kids began learning how to do laundry at age 4-5, and by age 8 they were doing there own with limited supervision. When my kids were aged 8-16, we had a dear friend and her two children (aged 12 and 14) come and live with us. Our friend was going thru a divorce and suffering from a severely debilitating and devastating illness. I homeschooled all six kiddos. Our laundry and chore routines, as well as the routine of our schedule, was a true godsend–can’t recommend it enough!!

    Reply
    • Actually, that’s not my laundry room. It’s just a picture I used for this post. I’m sorry I can’t direct you to where to get it.

      Reply
  4. I’m a single mom of four girls. My girls are now 15, 14, 11, and 7…but we started assigning days of the week to the kids when the oldest was 7 or 8. Everyone but the youngest can start their loads (and switch them to the dryer) on their own now.

    Each person has a dirty hamper (a plastic kitchen trash can that is narrow – like the kind placed between a fridge & cabinet – with a foot pedel), we have 1 (ONE!) clean clothes basket, and again…we have assigned days.

    The clean clothes basket is for catching the clothes coming out of the dryer – and you don’t want wrinkles (that have to be ironed), so you out your clothes away quickly…and you don’t want to hold up the next day’s laundry because it’ll affect you on your day too.

    My day, as Mom, is Monday – M for Mom, right?
    Each day after is by age, oldest to youngest.
    Pet items are run on Saturday, and the laundry is quiet on Sunday (no more of those “I NEED this for tomorrow!” situations 🙂 )

    Each child has a monogramed towel (we also have “Guest” monogramed towels as well) and bedding. We don’t seperate darks from whites, and they’ve learned to check pockets for anything from crayons, to pens, to change (which we put in a jar 😉 ) after a few mishaps – that now only affect the culprit! 😉

    If you miss your day, you can go the next day – but only after that assigned person has moved their clothes to the dryer…and when you have only 8 options, you don’t want to miss your day.

    The girls share 1 room, with 1 closet…

    And we toss kitchen items directly into the washer, as the washer & dryer are in a closet in the kitchen. 🙂

    Reply
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    Reply
  6. I found my way over here via Kitchen Stewardship. I love my laundry system too, which I worked out a few years ago.

    I have 3 year old twins. There is a hamper in their bathroom, and all of their clothes go in there. My husband wears a dress shirt and suit every day with a white undershirt. He also insists that his whites (undershirts and athletic socks) be bleached in every wash. Because of this, I do sort. But I do the same things on the same days each week. I end up doing one load per day, with occasional extras for icky dog towels that I don’t want to mix in with other laundry, or a super full kids’ basket that can’t fit into one load.

    Mondays are adult “regular” clothes.
    Tuesdays are adult whites.
    Wednesday is for kids’ clothes
    Thursday is towels
    Friday is sheets
    Sometime over the weekend is permanent press.

    I like this because I don’t sort the kids’ clothes and don’t have to separate them from the adult clothes. I don’t sort and do adult laundry all at once. Each day I pull out that day’s laundry items for the wash. It takes me 30 seconds or less to do this. Bath and kitchen towels have their own hamper in the laundry room. The bath towels are changed after showers every Monday and Thursday, so I only take them down there 2x per week. The kitchen towels go in the hamper each night after kitchen cleanup. Sheets are changed every Friday and go directly into the wash. I only have one laundry basket. No piling up load after load of clean laundry! Folding/putting away one load per day is doable.

    Reading this back it sounds complicated but it’s really not! It’s a system. I know what I need to do every day, so it’s pretty automatic.

    Reply
  7. My mom totally used the method of assigning who’s clothes get washed on which day. It works so well! My family is not at that point yet of laundry overload, but I know that method works and will definitely use it when we need to. Thanks for explaining it so clearly! 🙂

    Reply

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Welcome. I’m Sarah!

 
Sarah

I’m the creator of Decluttering School (formerly known as Early Bird Mom), lover of organized spaces, encourager to women and mom to four boys. Click here to read more!

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