I’ve always enjoyed doing laundry. Something about the clean smell and seeing freshly folded piles is satisfying. However, the joy in the process quickly fades when after doing laundry every day I still wind up with set stains, overflowing hampers, lack of clean clothes, and dirtly clothes piles everywhere! Whether you enjoy laundry like I do, or not, you are likely here to find a routine that will help limit your laundry woes. That’s why I’m glad to share our simplified large family laundry routine with you today! I have tried different systems and the current one has made laundry so much easier to maintain. My hampers aren’t overflowing, my laundry room stays mostly in order, and the only thing overflowing on a given day is the clean laundry baskets!
Having a routine can be the make-it-or-break-it to make something go from disaster to order. My routine described below, can work for any size family. I have also included a print you can easily reference.
(The comedy is not lost on me that today, as I write this, I am cleaning up half a jug of laundry soap that fell off the washer and spilled all over the laundry floor downstairs! HAHAHAH)
- The basics to our simplified large family laundry routine
- Some systems I have tried before
- The benefits to my current simplified routine
- My simplified large family laundry routine:
- Tips and tricks
The basics to our simplified large family laundry routine
- Collect all the dirty clothes in the evenings
- Rotate loads every day after mealtimes as needed (except Sundays)
- Fold, only the essentials, all at once
- Put away the following morning
There are 11 of us needing laundry done, but our 4 youngest have the most laundry and most dirty laundry by far! So, if you just have littles and feel overwhelmed, rightly so! It is alot! hehe.
We have 4 boys that share 2 rooms downstairs where we also have a second washer and dryer set. They alternate doing their own laundry by room, and each boy has their own hamper. Our oldest daughter does her own laundry around the laundry I am doing over the weekend . This means I am responsible for 6 persons laundry- mine and my husband’s, our baby girl’s, and the 3 little boys’. I add in the towels and sheets on particular days.
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Some systems I have tried before
I have tried all kinds of methods. Maybe you have tried different methods, too, but they weren’t working for you either. Perhaps that’s why you’re here today. Everyone has their preferences, but finding what works for YOU is the most important part of establishing a good routine. I’ve even folded Kon Mari style, but soon realized that work was all undone in1 day with little kids rummaging for a favorite shirt.
- Doing it all over 2 days
- Assigning a day of the week per person or room
- Collecting it all and doing it daily
The later is the method I am using now. I’ve been doing laundry everyday since our family size grew to about 6 of us, but it was a different method. Each day I would wash by room or category. The trouble I was that we still had a week to go between those washes. I was doing laundry everyday, but we still would run out of clean clothes. The other problem was the stains on the clothes would set after sitting there a week.
The benefits to my current simplified routine
There is rarely an overflowing hamper in a bedroom now and the dirty clothes are mostly contained to the laundry room, and washed sooner.
Stains don’t set as easily, anymore. I noticed the wash comes clean without much needed pretreating because they’re washed more frequently.
We can keep a more minimal wardrobe as the clothes are washed more often.
Our littles guys can find something clean to put on from the fresh laundry basket easily if needed, as well.
My simplified large family laundry routine:
- Keep a hamper in each room
- Collect dirty clothes each evening
- Sort clothes into 3 large hampers
- Rotate wash after mealtimes
- Sort into baskets by room or child
- Fold only the essentials once a day
- Have kids put away their own during a routine time
1. Keep a hamper in each room
This makes it easy to keep the dirty clothes off the floor and ready to be collected. Our older boys that share have their own dirty clothes hampers to make it easier to keep track of their own clothes they wash themselves, as well. I prefer to use these large hampers because they are durable, lightweight, and large.
2. Collect dirty clothes each evening
I prefer to collect in the evenings to see sure we get the clothes from that da, and because I’m usually home to do it and not rushing out somewhere. If you want to develop a maintainable routine, find a time that works for you that you can be consistent in. A tip- pin it to something you already do, like a mealtime or when you get home etc.
3. Sort clothes into 3 large hampers
These large hampers are the ones I use in my laundry room. I sort by lights, darks, and heavy or soiled items. I don’t get picky about weights and colors and have not had a problem. If I think some whites need a refresh, I’ll pull them out of the lights basket and soak separately in oxi clean. When the hamper is full to the top, I know I have a full load ready to go in!
4. Rotate wash after mealtimes as needed
Mornings are busy enough, so just needing to remember to throw a ready load in after breakfast and switch what’s in the wash is simple enough. I have a habit of it now, so laundry doesn’t sit more than a day. If you tie it to something that is already a habit it will become a habit in itself, too.
5. Sort into baskets by room or child
Our 3 little guys have their own small laundry baskets, so when I sit down to fold, I just sort their laundry into their own baskets. I don’t fold any of their clothes. I help them fold on a morning we have more time, or I just let them put them in the proper drawer during our morning routine when their baskets get full. This makes it easy for them to find clean clothes in between without rummaging through folded clothes. Our little girl’s dresser is in our room so I include her clothes with my husband’s and mine.
6. Fold only the essentials once a day
I collect the clean laundry out of the drawer into a large basket or two, and batch fold only once a day. My preference is to do it in the evenings either while my hubby reads to us, or we watch a show. I don’t fold undies or jammies, unless I get carried away watching a great show- like our current favorite, The Chosen!
7. Have kids put away their own during a routine time
Last, but certainly not lease, we have even our younger kids help as much as they can fold and put away their own clothes. As I mentioned before, I don’t have them fold unless I have time to sit with them and give them a folding lesson, so that they can learn. They have minimal wardrobes so their drawer aren’t stuffed. As long as we can find what we need, I don’t care. 🙂
Tips and tricks
- I love these wool dryer balls to fluff and soften our clothes and cut dry time. Sprinkling on a few essential oil drops keeps them smelling lovely, too.
- Tide Free and Gentle and Shout keep the stain setting to a minimum. I use cornstarch on a grease stain, then dawn detergent, and I save shout for for those really stubborn grease stains because it is a heavy chemical, but works!
- Pour boiling water over fruit stains and watch them vanish- really!
- Soaking in baking soda or borax in a tub before washing for heavily soiled items works wonders.
- I wash all my hand washables or things I don’t want to dry in the dryer in delicates bags. I just wash on cold with my normal load and pull out to hang dry. I even put sweaters I want to hang up in a large delicates bag so I don’t accidentally put it in the dryer.
- I buy the same socks for our boys so I don’t have to match individual sock pairs. If one gets a hole it can be matched to another that did. 🙂 We rotate white and black ankles for spring and summer and taller boot socks for fall and winter. The ones I like here, have a different color per size which is all I have to look for. Easy peasy.
- Use my no iron hack- explained in this video!
Thanks so much for joining me again here in my little corner, friend! I hope some of these ideas can help you gain solutions that create more time to spend enjoying your family!
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