Ever heard of making your own laundry soap? No? Well, let me wax poetic about why doing so is a good idea.
1) It doesn’t contain harsh chemicals that a lot of other detergents have, meaning it won’t break down the fibers in/is gentler on your clothes, textiles, etc.
2) It is way cheaper than buying premade detergent. We are talking about $.70 a load here folks. That is easily a 1/3 of the price you would pay for even no name detergent.
3) It’s fun to make!
Hopefully, I’ve at least got your mind’s cogs turning and (possibly) interested in giving homemade laundry soap a go. I found this recipe after doing a little internet digging and was able to source all of the ingredients at my local Harris Teeter. I payed roughly $9 for everything since they didn’t have any smaller sized boxes of washing soap or Borax. On the flip side, I have enough material to handle about 5oo loads of laundry!
- 1/2 cup Washing Soda
- 1/2 cup Borax
- 1/3 bar Fels Naptha soap (shredded- I used an old cheese grater)
- 1 gallon plus 6 cups water
- 2 gallon container/bucket with lid
Mix first four ingredients in your bucket.
Let sit for 24 hours until it “gels” (It will be the consistency of egg drop soup). Use 1/2 cup per load.
Please Note: this mix is not designed to be “sudsy”. It is not the soap bubbles that clean your clothes it’s the actual ingredients in your mix.
I have a weakness for eye-catching fabric. Not to the point of obsession, but my eyes do widen with glee when I see a print I like. That being said, there are, apparently, folks who are obsessed. Like the lady who frequents one of my favorite fabric haunts. The owner there told me she comes in quite frequently and buys about a yard of different fabrics each time. When he asked her what she does with all the fabric she buys she informed him she puts it on display in her fabric room. She doesn’t use it for anything but eye candy. In a room dedicated solely to her fabric collection. Seriously. That being said, my fondness for textiles is not nearly that maniacal. Tangent aside, I visited my aforementioned haunt yesterday and picked up a yard each of these beauties.
I am going to make some 20 x 20 pillow covers tonight (zippered thank you very much) to put in my Etsy Shop (click here to visit). Among my other sewing projects in waiting are the organic french terry diapers I need to make for Charley. Girl is growing fast! I made six a few weeks ago and I absolutely love them. I love the fabric, fit, feel, absorbency, and look. The only problem is they are time-consuming to make. Here’s one from the batch I made a ~month ago.
Good looking, huh? Last but not least, my other sewing project in the works is to make new reusable shopping bags using Hutson’s dog food bag. Sounds crazy I know, but I came across images of similar ones yesterday and thought they were rather nifty. For one thing, they are putting what would otherwise be trash to good use and for another they are essentially free to make.
(courtesy of Etsy Shop Farmtown Totes)
Needless to say I have plenty to keep me busy these next few days outside of work, family, and other daily requirements. Here’s hoping I don’t flake out and decide to be lazy tonight instead, choosing to read the latest Food & Wine instead of sewing!
I am already making my own lotions, solid perfumes, and exfoliants…why not my own soap? That, at least, was my thought process the other day when I decided to try my hand at homemade soaps. My explanation for this home bath and beauty adventure (warning: scroll down to the next paragraph to skip my soap box rant) is that I want to know what I put on my body and in my belly. I find it disturbing when I read ingredient lists I cannot pronounce much less understand. Why do I need preservatives that act like formaldahyde when absorbed by own body? Why do I need fragrances and perfumes that are synthetic and disrupt my endocrine system? I embrace the notion that knowledge is power- that knowing what you are consuming, absorbing, buying keeps you healthier and saves you from unnecessary risk. So when I realized my last soap bar was just about kapoot, it was the perfect time for me to make my own using organic and simple ingredients.
I chose a glycerin-based soap to experiment with first. I added Vitamin E, shea butter, beeswax, and essential oils to liven it up and, wah-lah!, I ended up with three batches (9 bars total) that all smell amazing and leave my skin soft and smooth. So far the Cedarwood variation is my favorite and rustic enough (re: manly) for Aaron to like it, too.
My Lavender Soap
The moral of this tale is that making things yourself results in a superior product both in terms of quality and safety. While it is true that homemade requires more time and effort than running to the store, I firmly believe that whatever exertion you to have to put forth is a small cost for the rewards you reap. I am now stepping down from my proverbial soap box. Happy Friday and enjoy the weekend!