Use This Simple System to Tackle a Huge Amount of Laundry Without Missing a Beat

published Oct 23, 2020
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If your laundry is in a constant state of disarray, you’re not alone, and solving the problem probably isn’t as complicated as you think. You don’t need tons of space to prevent your clothes from piling up in your laundry room or bedroom—you just need a reliable system.

A mom of two with lots of laundry to do, Alabama-based home and lifestyle blogger Leslie Lambert has a super-smart method for keeping her family’s dirty and clean clothes in order. The backbone of her fool-proof system? A dedicated sorting station where she organizes her laundry in baskets on five labeled shelves. 

Her custom laundry room is ideal for sorting, because it has built-in, vertical shelves, but if you don’t have the same type of space, you could invest in a rolling hamper organizer like this one. The goal is to have however many separate, predetermined laundry “homes” you need to streamline your own process.

The top basket, for clean clothes, is the one she uses to get laundry out of the dryer and transport it to each family member’s rooms. If she can’t make it to her kids’ rooms (like if they’re sleeping) or doesn’t have time to put things away when they’re dry, she simply keeps them in the designated cubby. Ideally, though, the bin should stay empty, so you can keep your laundry assembly line moving. (Lambert says she does laundry once a week, but how often you do yours depends on your schedule and how many clothes you have to wash.)

The second basket holds hangers, so there’s always one available for hanging any items to dry, and the next three down hold the family’s dirty clothes, which are separated into darks, lights, and red garments. This system works well, because you can easily customize it to your needs—just swap out the label. For example, if you only separate lights and darks, you’ll need just two baskets instead of three. And as Lambert points out, you could also organize these baskets by name instead of category, particularly if everyone in your home is capable of doing their own laundry.

Alternatively, you could opt to put your dirty clothes immediately into the baskets for a make-shift hamper situation, but Lambert prefers to collect her family’s clothes from their individual hampers (which are hidden in their bedroom closets) and then sort them on laundry day. On that day, she also takes sheets off the beds, grabs towels from the bathrooms and linens from the kitchen.

Once everything is sorted, Lambert starts treating the stains and washing, working her way through the baskets (she says her goal is to keep the washer and dryer running at all times to keep things efficient). 

Once it’s all done, there’s one, go-to spot for folding. Lambert uses her bed, but you could use your laundry room, the table, or the couch. Separate your household’s items as you fold them, so everything is easy to put away, then, carry them to their designated rooms in baskets. Things might get a little messier in the process, but you’ll be well on your way to a tidy home (and laundry room).