Quick Tips to Make Laundry Fun + Simple!

posted by Aby Garvey 11 Comments

Laundry. Does just seeing the word conjure up less than joyful feelings? If so, you’re not alone! Laundry is just one of those less-than-favorite tasks for a whole bunch of folks. And there are so many reasons why. For one, it’s a never-ending task. As soon as you finish, the day ends, and presto, off come the clothes everyone is wearing, and you’re right back on your way to overflowing hampers! And even if you don’t mind some parts of the laundry process — sorting, pre-treating, loading the washer, or even changing over the clothes between loads —there’s bound to be at least one step in the process that you simply don’t like. Maybe it’s the hanging and folding stage, ironing, sorting the socks, or maybe it’s just taking that final step of putting the clothes away.

The bottom line is this: laundry isn’t necessarily complicated, it’s just involved — lots of steps and lots of opportunity to be faced with a task that quite simply isn’t your cup of tea. But alas, help and hope for brighter laundry days is on the way. First though, think about which part of the laundry process is your least favorite. Then, read on for ideas to make that piece of the process as simple and fun as possible. Then move on to your next least favorite step and do the same. In no time you’ll be having fun and getting *loads* done!

Overcome inertia

Sometimes, in light of all the steps involved in laundry (and your deep rooted knowledge that ultimately you’ll get to the stage you don’t like) simply getting started, or overcoming the inertia of not doing laundry, is tough. You’ll know this is you if you wait until every hamper in the house is overflowing and you’re contemplating buying new underwear instead of washing the dozens of pairs in your hampers. Sound familiar? If so, first and foremost …

Get caught up!

Yep, that’s right. Step one is a laundry fest. Get every single article of clothing and all your linens washed, folded and put way — even the hand-washables! Block out a day, a few evenings, however long it takes, and get caught up. Laundry is your mission, but you can have some fun along the way too. Fold while you watch your favorite T.V. show. Bring a portable CD player into the laundry room. Have some snacks. Read a great book between loads. Do whatever you need to do, but get caught up! Then …

Do a little bit a lot more often!

Here’s one of my golden rules of organizing: the more you dislike doing something, the more often you should do it. Sounds crazy, but really its rational advice. Here’s why: if you dislike doing something, it gets worse when it gets bigger — doesn’t it? A small hamper filled with clothes is a lot less daunting than five overflowing hampers, right? So do a small load a day and keep reasonably caught up. It will take a lot less effort to get started and keep going.

Make it simple as pie!

Keep supplies in arms reach. Install a shelf above your washing machine and dryer to store all your supplies — spot removers, detergent, bleach, dryer sheets, empty hangers and the like. Keep extras of all your basic laundry supplies on hand to avoid last minute trips to the store. When you pull a bottle of detergent out of your storage area, jot it on your errands list and you’ll always have everything you need for laundry right at hand.

Separate as you go!

Invest in a three-compartment laundry sorter to make easy work out of keeping clothes separated. Separate by color as you put clothes into the hamper and save the mega-sort step of going through hampers and hampers full of laundry one item at a time. By sorting-as-you-go, when you see a full compartment in your hamper, its simple to throw in a load.

fun organized laundry sorter

Tips to keep up the momentum!

Now that we’ve made it a little bit easier to get started on the laundry, here are some ways to make it simpler to keep at it.

Get into a routine!

Maybe you’ll throw in a load every morning right when you wake up and transfer it to the dryer after you’ve dressed and eaten breakfast. Or you could throw in a load at dinner and fold it during T.V. time. Whatever you decide, building laundry into your routine (much like brushing your teeth) takes a lot less energy than dreading it.

Make your laundry room more fun!

Bring color into your laundry room with a cheerful rug, curtains or framed kid’s artwork. Use glass jars for an artful display of detergent or antique clothes pins. Play some upbeat and energizing music while you sort or fold. Invest in laundry baskets that make you happy!

organized laundry room

Make it easy to sort socks!

If you have a big family (and oodles of laundry!) consider keeping each family member’s clothes segregated. Put a hamper in each person’s room and do a couple of loads per family member per week (a load of lights and a load of darks, for example.) You’ll avoid the big sort at fold time — so much simpler than trying to figure out whose socks are whose after the fact!

Avoid wrinkles!

If you don’t already have one, consider installing a hanging bar in your laundry room and hang clothes as soon as they come out of the dryer. This makes it quick and easy to get your clothes out of the dryer while avoiding or minimizing wrinkles. (You may even be able to forego ironing!)

Make it easy to put things away!

Have you ever had the laundry washed, dried, folded and there it sat? For days and weeks it sat waiting for the put-away-laundry-fairy to magically appear and get everything back where it belongs. Instead, your whole family used the laundry room as a closet, sprinting through the house for clothes every morning. Uh … yep … I’ve been there, too.

  • Here’s a simple solution that may sound familiar: sort as you go. Use a three-compartment handled laundry bag to segregate clothes by person as you fold. Or assign each person a laundry basket of their own, along with the responsibility of putting their things away.
  • And last, but not least, remember our good friend the label. Apply labels to the inside of drawers and on hanging rods to make it easy for anyone to put clothes away. Who knows, maybe that put-away-laundry-fairy *will* magically appear!

Alright, I’m feeling motivated to do some laundry! Care to join me?

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  • August 20, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Also, sometimes clothing sits and sits folded, washed, and ready to go simply because your drawers are too full and you know you’ll be cramming to fit more in and its just not somethng you enjoy doing.

    So adding to the keep your supplies close, keep your environment ready, keep those dressers at a good half-full stage when everything is clean, because you wont have to stress over shoving clothes I mean, putting clothes away.

    January 16, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Good point – factor in some breathing room so it’s easy to put clothes away. Thanks for sharing!!

    April 18, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    Purge the extra clothes, donate to needy. Simplify your life ;)

    • January 8, 2014 at 4:03 am

      this really helped me thank you so much

      January 16, 2014 at 11:37 am

      Thanks, Haley! Glad to hear it!

      • February 21, 2014 at 12:29 am

        I’m 68 and do all the laundry for the 2 of us. All the clothes go in one basket. I sort by using a Nifty Grabber ($16 on eBay) and drop the sorted clothes on a Corral (a 5 corner cargo net thing from the children’s section at IKEA for $2) opened and placed on the floor for each load. Grab the 5 corners with the clothes and dump all in the machine and pull out the Corral. Socks are placed in a washing bag as for dedicates. Stains are treated with Felds-naphtha bar soap. Old oil stains are treated with GOOP Hand Cleaner in auto department. Follow labeled instructions on can. Load with my home made detergent (Google it and save 50 cents a load on detergent). Shirts, jeans come out wet and I hang them on a plastic hanger on a laundry bar (broom stick suspended by electrical ties). Let them drip dry so I don’t have to iron. (I refuse to iron). Underwear, etc. in the dryer. Dryer has a hard piped exhaust (4 inch pipe as found on your gas water heater) so drying is more efficient and no lint gets caught. 2nd most common source of home fires is the dryer. In the dryer are 6 tennis balls that cut drying time 40%. One 3 inch ball of aluminum foil for static. (Thanks to TV’s “The Chew.”) I don’t have a problem with softness. When dry, everything that can get food splattered, including cloth napkins, on it gets a light spray of commercial starch. I don’t iron, so nothing gets stiff. Yes, even synthetics. Colors NEVER get white spots. Starch is a stain repellent. All dry clothes on hangers placed on laundry bar are placed on Nifty Grabber and go over my shoulder and up the stairs to the closet. Don’t be afraid to wash down comforters or down coats. Dry in the sun and shake them out when dry. Check the returned fluffy by looking at the sun pass through them. Whites yellowed by bleach? Try “Get the Yellow Out.” Pricey, but you only need to run it once a year or so. Pit stains? Paint pits with hydrogen peroxide and let dry. You may need to repeat. Rush job? Single item? Delicate? Runny color? Camping? Use a bucket and a NEW plunger. Have to line dry? Limited room? Can’t hang a laundry bar? Tie loops in a clothes line every 4 inches. Hang clothes on plastic hanger and run hook through loop. Make the loop a force fit for the hanger and it will not blow off. I guess that is all I can think of right now. No, I don’t have a blog. But cutting down on laundry time gives me time to type.

        April 18, 2014 at 4:16 pm

        Great info!

        • April 8, 2014 at 12:23 pm

          im way to lazy to do laundry please help!!!

          • May 22, 2014 at 5:01 am

            Mr. Joe, I do believe that you’re my hero and a fine ‘laundry master’ with a plan to aspire to & a man to look up to! You have your routine down to a military style regiment, fabulous! I love it! There’s only 2 adults. 1 child….. Oh, 6 ‘furry children’, 3-dogs, 3-guinea pigs……and I feel like I’m constantly drowning in laundry. Despite the fact that I’m very much a clothes horse & passing the trait on to my mini-me….I feel as if she NEVER has clean clothes! It drives me insane. I’m going to strive towards creating and adopting out own laundry plan, just as Mr. Joe has done (much better than I could hope to, lol) , so I’m not constantly dreading the laundry room. Or even the laundry room hallway. :/ Thanks for the fine inspiration, Sir!

            June 2, 2014 at 9:45 am

            Love this! Would love to hear how it works for you. :)

            • September 22, 2014 at 3:59 pm

              What about if you have to go to the laundromat? I have to do it once a week to save money. Its a lot of laundry.