Monday, January 2, 2012


I'm going to start our saving money plan by cutting back on laundry. No, not cutting back on actually DOING laundry, by starting to dry all of our clothes on a wooden rack and fluffing them in the dryer. I'm also hoping to convince hubby to put up a clothes line in the spring! Nothing better than clothes dried outside in fresh spring/summer air! This will probably mean clothes will need to be ironed more, and since I've never done that, another learning lesson! I got an awesome iron for my bridal shower oh about 4 years ago and I've never used it. Oops. Good excuse to start right? I am getting an inexpensive ironing board also ($11 table top board from Amazon).

We are also washing everything in cold water to save money on heating hot water and therefore propane.

I am going make my own laundry detergent, but not use it immediately because we have an almost brand new bottle of detergent. The "recipe" I found online for laundry detergent calls for:
  • 1 bar of laundry soap (Fels Naptha, Zote or Ivory)
  • 1 box Borax
  • 1 box of washing soda
  • Essential oil of your choice, I'm gonna try peppermint and lavender (not together).

Once you have all of these items, you  mix together:
  • 1 cup of soap
  • 1/2 cup washing soda
  • 1/2 cup of borax
  • Few drops of essential oil
Use 1 tablespoon for light loads and 2 for heavy loads.

Cost breakdown looks like this:

Soap $1.09 a bar (3 cups shaved),
Borax $4.19 for a 4 lbs box,
Washing soda 55 oz $3.59

I don't have any essential oil (though I have ordered some), but I am thinking that I will not use it, this stuff smells yummy just the way it is. We found all of these items in our local grocery store, I was planning on buying them from Amazon but it was MUCH more expensive on there than at the local store, shame shame Amazon!

The finished product?

I'm sure that I was supposed to put it in the food processor and blend it up, but I got out the food processor and it didn't work, so this will have to do. I tried it out on one load of laundry last night and it seems to work great! Clothes are clean and smell good too. 

I am doing these things in hopes of saving money, saving wear and tear on clothes (hence saving even more money!). I found this neat website that has formulas for costs of electricity. If you run your dryer approximately 4 hours per day (this is probably a bit overkill in our case but nonetheless) it saves you $192 a year. That doesn't sound like a lot but I am 26, lets say I do laundry until I'm 80 (we can only hope) that's 54 years. $192 for 54 years is a total savings of $10368, that is CRAZY, do you know what you can do with $10000 over the course of your lifetime? Many many things, starting with a college fund for Kenzie!


Mrs. Monologues said...

We use a dry wooden rack for a bunch of our clothes and I love it! I actually need to buy another one because laundry day can get a little packed on one rack!

Mrs. Monologues

Jessica said...

I actually am looking at a second one on Amazon now, clothes get put everywhere on laundry day! Thanks for the comment!

Lara said...

Hi! Great post. I've been using the same recipe for about 2 years now, and we love it. Don't hesitate to use just about any soap you want. We can't use ivory due to allergies, and when I couldn't get felsnaptha one day, I tried Irish Spring. My hubby loved it. It's his favorite soap, and I knew that nobody was allergic to it. So, depending on my mood, I mix it up and use both felsnaptha and some Irish Spring.

I also make my own fabric softener with hair conditioner, vinegar, and water. There is a recipe online somewhere, but I just take a whole bottle of conditioner (v05 or whatever is cheap), 2 cups of white vinegar, and the rest water to fill up the bottle.

I have a couple of drying racks, especially since we have to cloth diaper and I need to let a lot of the air dry as well. Don't hesitate to stick those racks out in the sun too during the spring if you don't get your line up. :) Works awesome!