Monday, June 4, 2012

Laundry Day

Another beautiful spring day in New England; blue skies, and green sprouting everywhere.

Homemade laundry detergent.
How the finished product should look...
Ingredients...I've included Mum's favorite pre-wash stain remover.

Along with the warm weather comes the ability to finally hang our laundry outside. Mum hasn't never really used our dryer! In the summer, everything is hung outside on a large clothing line, and in the winter, an Amish clothes-rack is used in front of our wood stove. Some people consider hanging up clothes to be  a bit of a nuisance; much easier to just 'push a button.' But our family has found that it doesn't take much time at all, that the clothes feel softer, smell better, and saves a lot of money on the electric bill.

But Mum's laundry tricks don't stop there....she also makes her own laundry detergent. Originally she found the recipe in a magazine, and has consistently made all of our laundry detergent for two years. The ingredients for it are easy to find (you can find them in most grocery stores), and can be purchased for under $10.00. It can also make 108 large loads! Mum figured it out, and each load (about 1-2 cups of detergent) only costs $0.08!!!!! Compare that to many smaller loads of store-bought detergent, costing about $0.26 per load.

Laundry Detergent Recipe
1/2 Bar of Fels Naptha, grated.
1 Cup of Arm and Hammer Washing Soda.
1 Cup of Borax. 


1. Grate the Fels Naptha, 

2. Fill a medium size sauce pan about half way with water, and then heat grated Fels Naptha in it, until dissolved.

3. Add the washing soda and Borax, stir until dissolved.

4. Remove from heat. Place the mixture in a 4 gallon bucket, and fill with warm water. 

5. For best results, allow the detergent to set and cool overnight. The mixture will become thick, like jello. You can break it up with your hands, making it look like gelatinous curdled milk. 

Small loads of laundry will use about a cup of detergent, large loads should take 2 cups. It cleans the clothes very well, however, will not work on stains. Clothes with stains should be pre-treated and then washed for best results. Mum's favorite stain remover, which she has found to work very well, is Resolve.

So there you have it! Happy Washing, everybody!

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