How do you fold laundry fast and efficiently?
October 3, 2022 11:34 AM   Subscribe

I have a lot of laundry. Getting it washed and dried is not the problem, that is easy, but then I have 3-5 loads of clean laundry that sit around for weeks. It takes me ages to fold it and put it away. There must be a better way! (Please do not recommend a service, that is not an option.)
posted by epanalepsis to Home & Garden (55 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Is folding everything necessary? I put my pajamas/underwear/some loungewear in drawers without folding them, and hang up my shirts/pants/etc. And I put all of my kids’ clothing in bins without folding.
posted by maleficent at 11:37 AM on October 3, 2022 [15 favorites]

fold or hang as it comes out of the dryer, sorting until piles accordingly what goes where. I put away when its all done, but my husband likes to put his stuff away as it comes out of the dryer.

i am right there changing clothes over from washer to dryer anyway, might as well fold as i go. and also, less wrinkles
posted by domino at 11:38 AM on October 3, 2022 [6 favorites]

Best answer: Yeah, I think my answer here is "sloppily". Mostly I wear stuff that doesn't wrinkle, and the wrinkle-prone stuff gets hung. What is specifically giving you trouble? Do you have enough space for all your clean clothes? Do you have particular needs that take particular steps to meet? I just folded two loads of laundry while chatting with my wife and it was maaaaaybe ten minutes. (Dump on couch/bed, fold into piles based on eventual location, move piles to drawers/closet. Pair, ball, and put away socks. Done!)
posted by restless_nomad at 11:40 AM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

I don't mind folding laundry, so I'll sometimes fold as I remove pieces from the dryer. If there's a lot and I'm feeling overwhelmed about it, I'll bring it upstairs, dump it on the couch and fold while I watch something. Neither of those may sound appealing or work for you, but I offer them as suggestions.
posted by emelenjr at 11:41 AM on October 3, 2022

I find it easier to work in small artisanal batches - do one load of bleachables, put them all away. Do one load of clothes, put them all away.
posted by bleep at 11:42 AM on October 3, 2022 [6 favorites]

Response by poster: No closets - everything must go in a drawer. There are clothes and linens of many different sizes and formats.
posted by epanalepsis at 11:44 AM on October 3, 2022

I was really resistant to this tip for a long time but it was revolutionary for me: I do one load of laundry at a time. I can't start a new load until the dryer is emptied and folded. Yes it is less efficient when it comes to washer time but it's way more efficient when it comes to getting clean clothes back in the drawers.

I also don't fold kids clothes, pajamas, underwear, etc.
posted by muddgirl at 11:44 AM on October 3, 2022 [4 favorites]

I have a small laundry basket and do fairly small loads so it's not a daunting task to put my clothes away as soon as they come out. If there's several loads it just won't get done for a while.

Agreed with others on putting things away somewhat sloppily. Underwear folded in half and stuffed in a drawer, t-shirts folded in quarters and stuffed in a drawer, collared shirts hung in a closet.
posted by mikesch at 11:45 AM on October 3, 2022

Best answer: Hi there, degenerate laundry procrastinator here. I regularly put myself into this position, like a fucking idiot, but it's also enabled me to find a quick exit strategy when I do finally do the job.

First, distraction noise. I like TV. For this job I'll usually grab an old ep of CSI or a gaming youtube channel, basically something that offers some only slightly interesting distraction. Music has never worked for me for chores, for some reason.

Get yourself a nice big open space--your bed is great. Lose the pillows spread out the blanket nice and flat so there's nothing to hinder your progress.

Dump your laundry out one load at a time and triage it into piles based on type. Underpants here, socks there, pants over there, towels over there. Anything that needs to go on a hanger, toss it into a pile to deal with later.

Once you've got your piles, then start folding: largest things first. Towels, pants, whatever this means for you. Now you have neatly folded piles that you can move to the far edge of the bed so you've got a lot more workspace. Then you can focus on the little stuff, your underpants and socks, pjs, camis, whatever.

Once you get the small stuff folded (to the extent that you fold those things), put those away. Then put the big folded things away.

Now your bed is clear to deal with your stuff for hangers. Grab a big stack of hangers and then go to town on your set-aside pile. You don't even have to think about it, because you already know everything goes on a hanger. Just lay it down on your bed, on the hanger.

Once everything is on a hanger, THEN you can sort those out, and then put them away in their closets.

I can routinely get through even an abysmally stupid enormous pile of laundry in 20 mins or less using my triage method.
posted by phunniemee at 11:47 AM on October 3, 2022 [16 favorites]

Also, for sets of linens in the case of bedding, matching sets of things just get stuffed in one of the pillowcases for a set, rather than trying to fold everything into neat little stacks.
posted by mikesch at 11:47 AM on October 3, 2022 [3 favorites]

If there's something that has a maintenance reason for folding it, you can fold that. I fold pants. And mayyybe shirts if I'm feeling tidy. (All socks are identical and don't require matching.) Nothing else.

I mean, you're already not folding it, right? The drawers themselves are the maximum level of organization you need.
posted by aniola at 11:50 AM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I fold laundry while I talk on the phone with a friend.
posted by mcduff at 11:50 AM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Straight outta the dryer or it'll never get folded. If I'm doing multiple loads I fold the dryer contents onto the lid of the washer (which is just finished or finishing probably) which means I HAVE to take them away to put the washer contents into the dryer.

I hang as much as I can, and then I use bins on shelves in the closet instead of a dresser, because my bins are labeled and I can carry them to the dryer and set them on the washer to catch as folded. I see on your update you don't have a closet, but consider drawer organizers you can pull out and take to the laundry to catch as you fold.

I also wash in loads that make more sense for put-away, when I can. Like, I separate my loads into all-hanging and all-folding. And then sheets are by themselves, and bath towels go with washcloths/cleaning rags, hand towels, kitchen towels, my special hair towels. We have two sets of sheets, so they get folded ("folded" in the case of fitted sheets) and put away because the fresh ones are already on the bed. We keep 4 bath sheets for there to be 2 in the bathroom and 2 in the closet to start and we go through all 4 before washing. I have about 40 washcloths, most of them generic dark-colored that get used for both faces and household cleaning. It's all about enough that I don't run out between towel loads (2-3 weeks usually).

Also throw some stuff out when you fold. If you absolutely must collect to donate, put a bag/box in the laundry area for it, but just inspect and reject every time you wash - and if you're using drawer organizers you can see clearly what's at the back/bottom never getting worn and washed, let some of that stuff go or put it elsewhere if it's seasonal.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:51 AM on October 3, 2022 [5 favorites]

A few ideas: you can only watch your favorite (tv show, you tube video, etc) while folding laundry. I also often fold while chatting on the phone with my mom or dad.

Only fold what you need to (not underwear, for example). Sort and fold things as they come out of the dryer. Do you have a table near your dryer? Fold there or at least sort.
posted by bluedaisy at 11:52 AM on October 3, 2022 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Have you tried one of those "folding boards"? I find them useful for t-shirts and dress shirts, which are most of my laundry. :D
posted by kschang at 11:56 AM on October 3, 2022 [4 favorites]

Shirt-folding board might make the shirt pile go faster at least...
posted by Charity Garfein at 11:57 AM on October 3, 2022

I only own one laundry basket. (So I really can’t do more than two before folding and putting away). And podcasts!
posted by chocotaco at 11:59 AM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: So I have had more success with removing the pressure of folding right away. Instead, I have a routine of washing all the clothes on Saturday, but not folding any of it. Then, Sunday is my laundry-folding day. Folding is much less daunting for me when it's not also mixed with all the trips down to the basement for washing.

I fold on the bed, and make sure I put away right away. I do Konmari style folding, because rolling things up neat and tidy makes it slightly more pleasurable for me.
posted by wyzewoman at 12:00 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Since you’re doing a lot of loads at once, how about sorting loads into type of garment (underwear, shirts, pants, etc) and folding as soon as you take it out of the dryer? I too hate folding laundry and realized what I hate about it is all the different crap mixed together that all needs to be folded in a slightly different way.
posted by rhymedirective at 12:02 PM on October 3, 2022

I saw 'hang as much as possible' is not an option - but music and 10 minutes is my strategy for folding stuff - and fold as little as possible -ie: handtowels, socks, underwear, and kids' shorts don't get folded.
posted by The_Vegetables at 12:04 PM on October 3, 2022

If nothing else, I lay all the shirts flat in a pile so they don't get wrinkles and to simplify the steps of folding them or hanging them later.
posted by lookoutbelow at 12:12 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Is not folding an option? Because that's basically how I've "solved" this problem. I have a laundry basket next to my dryer, and I just throw everything in there after the dryer. If something is particularly wrinkle-prone (e.g., khaki pants), I'll fold them before putting them in, but t-shirts and stuff just go straight in. Then, when I'm picking out what to wear, I throw it all in the dryer again for a couple minutes to fluff out the wrinkles. Yes, I WFH, why do you ask?

My idea has always been to move my dresser down to wear that laundry basket is, maybe with a card table. One day...

On the rare occasions when I do fold, I basically do the same thing as phunniemee:

Dump your laundry out one load at a time and triage it into piles based on type. Underpants here, socks there, pants over there, towels over there.

Helps me prioritize. Shirts and pants are big and take up lots of space, but they're also what other people see. Nobody cares if I don't fold my boxer shorts.
posted by kevinbelt at 12:17 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Where's the laundry? Is there any spare space alongside? If so, add a folding table and a rolling garment rack.

Either way, fold things immediately when they come out of the dryer — whether or not you put them away. I often do it on the couch, while listening to a podcast, late in the day when I'm done thinking. And time starting the dryer accordingly.

Get a couple storage totes or foldable fabric storage boxes if you have nowhere piles of folded clothes can live for a day or two. Or a couple bankers boxes, in a pinch.

Dump your laundry out one load at a time and triage it into piles based on type.

To be clear, this is when loading the washer.
posted by snuffleupagus at 12:19 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

My laundry set-up is thus: every Friday everyone brings bedsheets and hampers down from bedrooms. I wash the kids' sheets (together), then the adult sheets, and then I put clean sheets back on the beds so I can have the basket back. Next I dump each kid's hamper directly into the washing machine (one at a time), then into the dryer, then back into the hamper for each kid to fold and put away when they get home from school. I wash my husband's and my clothes usually in two batches, darker and then lighter+whites. When our clothes are done in the dryer, I bring the basket from the basement up to our bedroom and fold it on our bed, hanging things that need hanging and putting everything else in piles, which get put away as soon as the folding is done. This set-up prevents the thing where clean laundry sits for days, and I've gotten to a point where I can make all three beds in under ten minutes and can handle a large load of adult laundry in about twelve. Sorting by wearer has been the trick that made the whole thing much easier, even when my kids were younger and I was doing their folding too.
posted by SeedStitch at 12:19 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

A ridiculous suggestion, but my Apple Watch thinks that laundry folding is about on par with taking a brisk walk in terms of how many "move" points it gives me and, even as I recognize how dumb and inaccurate that is, I do like seeing the points tick up.
posted by mskyle at 12:24 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Dump your laundry out one load at a time and triage it into piles based on type.

>To be clear, this is when loading the washer.

No. To be clear, this is when I'm folding my completed laundry.

I live alone, I do only my own laundry. If I waited long enough for a full load of only like with like I'd run out of essentials pretty fast, and washing things separately in mini loads as needed is such an enormous waste of both resources and my own energy.
posted by phunniemee at 12:29 PM on October 3, 2022 [4 favorites]

Ah. I'm solo too, but have lots of clothes. And my delicates aren't that delicate. Different strokes.
posted by snuffleupagus at 12:36 PM on October 3, 2022

I do exactly what phunniemee does - only I listen to podcasts or audiobooks while doing it.

The key for me is doing all the dumping and layout on my bed. This way it has to get done before I go to sleep.

(or, as sometimes happens, I have to admit out loud that I'm a loser and put it all back in the laundry bag for the next day.)
posted by invincible summer at 12:36 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Develop standard folding patterns.

For example for bathtowels I fold the narrow side of the rectangle in thirds and the long side in quarters. Your pattern should be suited to your storage space.

If you're working on a pile of bathtowels and stick to your pattern after awhile you've memorized it and it becomes automatic.

Fold fold fold.
Fold. Fold.

Enjoy your pile of symmetrically folded towels.
posted by jello at 12:42 PM on October 3, 2022 [4 favorites]

Seconding the one laundry basket so things can’t pile up too much (bonus if you live with another laundry doer who will sigh dramatically as they carry their pile of laundry directly upstairs to fold, to guilt you into handling yours).

And nthing phunniemee’s sorting method- I feel much calmer about folding laundry if I don’t have to switch gears with each piece I touch to figure out how to fold it.
posted by MadamM at 12:48 PM on October 3, 2022

Best answer: Go to YouTube, search Folding T Shirts Standing or Folding Clothes Fast or How to Fold Like a Retailer and so on and so on...
posted by y2karl at 1:07 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

The t-shirt trick really shortened my laundry time. Took 3 or 4 tries to get it right so it made sense to my clumsy fingers, but now I can't fold any other way.
posted by Hardcore Poser at 1:10 PM on October 3, 2022 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Can you do laundry more often? It’s so much less daunting for me to only have to put away 4 shirts and 3 pairs of pants or whatever rather than 20. I have to wear a uniform once a week that must be washed afterwards, and have a limited number of those, so ensuring I have a clean uniform to wear means I usually do my laundry at least every other week and it’s much more manageable than once a month-ish like I used to do.

Can you just get a second hamper to keep clean clothes in and take them out of there one day at a time if you don’t get everything folded? Or fold only what needs it, and leave undies/socks/etc unfolded in the bin, to be sorted as you need stuff to wear.

Consider small mesh laundry bags you throw your dirty socks/washcloths/undies/etc into when they’re dirty. You just wash and dry the whole bag and then everything is already sorted. I started doing this with socks and it’s incredible how much time it saves me. Plus no lost socks!

I try to fold as I take each item out of the dryer, and separate into piles on top of the washer/dryer according to where they go in my closet (long sleeved shirts, short sleeved shirts, pants, stuff that gets hung up) so the effort to put away after that is lessened.

Good luck. Doing laundry sucks.
posted by music for skeletons at 1:10 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Dump your laundry out one load at a time and triage it into piles based on type. Underpants here, socks there, pants over there, towels over there.

This is exactly what I do, also. On the bed means it has to be done before bedtime, so there is a finite amount of time to get it done, and it doesn't take super long once you get started. (I'm not a very careful folder, which helps speed things up, too.)

I've never lived in a place that had a good counter or table area next to the washer/dryer, but if you do have that, it might be a more ergonomic option compared to the bed.
posted by Dip Flash at 1:15 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Washing socks in a lingerie bag might help reduce time because you do not have to stop and fish around for socks in the pile. Underpants in a separate lingerie bag might also help in the same way.
posted by bilabial at 1:23 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Part of what makes this so painful for me is just not having enough storage space. Everything about putting laundry away sucks when you're trying to mush tshirts in a drawer with sweaters, or pajamas with gym stuff, and there's just a little too much of everything. Is there something about the process that is extra annoying for you, that you might be able to improve?
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 1:28 PM on October 3, 2022 [6 favorites]

Yes! More efficient storage or fewer clothes if that’s impossible is the true answer. Folding is not that much trouble if everything can be put away PAINLESSLY after. Even better if there’s extra room.

I never procrastinate as much as when I haven’t culled my shirts, say, and I know that once I’ve folded everything I’ll have to fight to cram it in a drawer.
posted by lydhre at 1:48 PM on October 3, 2022 [2 favorites]

Only fold what is absolutely necessary. Underwear, socks, jammies, tshorts, leggings, sweats, flannel shirts, and dishcloths NEVER get folded in my home - shove in the drawer and walk away.
posted by tristeza at 1:53 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

My low-energy system isn't quite the same as yours because I hang a lot of stuff in the closet, but it's similar to what people mention here. Bed plus TV or podcast. I prioritize getting it out of the dryer and laid flat so there's no wrinkles first and foremost, so I'm laying all my shirts and pants out flat on the bed, lint-rolling all the long stray hairs off, and chucking the socks and underwear into my second small laundry basket to pair up later. (If I didn't have a long stray hair crisis, I wouldn't even fold the underwear, I'd chuck it straight into the drawer.)

If I get an early start I just hang and fold all the shirts off the big flat pile, where they've been cooling into a non-wrinkly state rather than a crumpled ball, but if I'm falling asleep the big flat pile of shirts goes back on top of the basket for me to fold and hang tomorrow, when it's less daunting because it's mostly done.
posted by fountainofdoubt at 2:59 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

We have not folded laundry in years. My husband and I each do our own laundry, so we never have to sort out what belongs to whom.

My setup is, I have a long narrow card table sitting in one side of my closet that holds three baskets on top. I throw shirts in one, and I have a box sitting in the back half of that basket for socks. Bras, underwear and nightgowns go in basket #2. Basket #3 holds pants.

The Mr's setup is: he has the same long narrow card table as mine, but his is set up on his side of the bedroom. Three baskets on top hold all his clean clothes, completely unsorted by category. He just digs for what he needs. Dirty laundry goes in baskets underneath the table.

The only things that get folded are towels, sheets and blankets. These are stored in dresser drawers as we don't have a linen closet to speak of.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 3:01 PM on October 3, 2022 [1 favorite]

I also do "laundry triage" and do not fold as much as possible (underwear, bras, jammies). I have had more success with storing shirts in a roll holder; I also pre-group workout outfits and shove them in one of those hanging sweater things.
posted by emkelley at 3:30 PM on October 3, 2022

Oh god yeah, I forgot about the wash bags. I have a dozen at least, so I don't overcrowd them, plus a couple of very large ones I use for clothes that will pill if I allow them to free-roam in the wash. Socks*, underwear, bras all get segregated into bags, and then the bags get dumped into the appropriate bins. Most of my bras are just home bras and I dry them, my couple of leaving-the-house bras are the only ones that get air-dried, but a least they're easy to find in the bags.

*Note: I tend to get my socks pretty gnarly - walking outside, getting pet hair stuck, etc - and I wash them in mesh bags with an open weave. Most everything else, all the stuff that my snag on another item's zipper or whatever, go in more of a solid mesh bag.
posted by Lyn Never at 4:07 PM on October 3, 2022

Best answer: Put on a podcast or call someone on the phone. Stand right beside the dresser. Put items straight into the correct place, do not put them back into a basket - don’t “touch things twice”. Keep chatting or listening til it’s all put away.

Don’t fold things that don’t wrinkle- I just lie my jeans and sweaters loosely in the drawer and I hang most of my nicer tops to avoid wrinkles. I only fold my “nice t shirts”.

Everything else I kind of “stuff in an organized way” - kinda clump them up and pack them side by side so I can see things if needed. This applies to undies, pajamas, workout stuff, kid clothing, towels, sheets, etc.
posted by nouvelle-personne at 4:55 PM on October 3, 2022

At this point in my years of delaying folding until the pile is all of my clothes method, I put a hanging rack next to my laundry. I put things on a hanger and put them in the rack. I do all all my hangy things once a week and my clothes don't leave my laundry room unless 1)I am wearing them or 2) they undergarments, socks, or other things I stuff places.
posted by AlexiaSky at 6:04 PM on October 3, 2022

All shirts, even T-shirts, go on hangars. Folding a shirt can take an indeterminate amount of time. It takes 2 seconds to hang a shirt and difficult to mess up. Plus if you hang your shirts you never have to dig through a pile to find the one you want.
posted by Ookseer at 7:48 PM on October 3, 2022

I prioritize getting it out of the dryer and laid flat so there's no wrinkles first and foremost, so I'm laying all my shirts and pants out flat

This is an excellent point, along with sorting things into kinds if not washed that way.

You can drape garments over chairbacks as a temporary substitute to hanging dry (for things that do better that way until folded). Wingchairs work best, but dining or desk chairs will do.
posted by snuffleupagus at 9:09 PM on October 3, 2022

our process is basement laundry -> dumped on couch-ish area with espacially wrinkly things spread out or on chairs -> through the day doing a combination triage sort/fold i.e. towels get lumped together, socks get lumped together, t-shirts and underwear get folded and stacked. Later repeat matching/folding for socks/towels...then I take them upstairs to put away. All while listending podcasts. I consider the steps and flight of stairs gained towards my exercise goals.
posted by mmascolino at 9:14 PM on October 3, 2022

Wrinkles are in!
posted by mareli at 4:36 AM on October 4, 2022

Best answer: You've had excellent strategies for getting from dryer to categorized piles and stuff to put away. You touched on the fact that there is no hanging storage but can you confirm that your drawer/shelf space is adequate for your needs? Making category piles and folding is great but you also need to have space to put these things away.

I went through a process of shuffling sorted piles from bed to floor for weeks until I finally wore it again and it ended up back in the laundry basket because I did not have enough storage. This was compounded by not doing a good sort out for much too long. And it was only resolved when I spent a weekend doing the full sort out and donated a lot of things on the one hand and acquired more appropriate storage for the stuff I kept on the other.
posted by koahiatamadl at 6:54 AM on October 4, 2022

I second / third / fourth the suggestions for audio entertainment. I don't even dislike laundry (it's my favourite chore!) but I'm a champion procrastinator. I am, however, incapable of listening to something without doing something with my hands at the same time, so whenever a new episode of one of my podcasts drops I seize the opportunity to do whatever chore I have been putting off (loading the washing machine, loading the dishwasher, cleaning up the kitchen, putting away laundry, etc.). Works pretty well. I only figured out recently that this is what podcasts are for; previously I thought they were a colossally time-wasteful way to absorb information (compared to reading). They're really good for tricking my brain into doing the manual thing it doesn't otherwise feel like doing.

Laundry-specific tips: 1) Pre-sort it into piles of things that go in the same place, to cut down on annoying context-switching. 2) If you fold t-shirts, learn the quick t-shirt folding technique if you don't already know it. 3) Are there items you can roll up (the way you'd roll clothes when packing a bag)? That's pretty quick; I use it for skirts and pants that are OK to crumple.

More generally, my enthusiasm for putting laundry away increased when I started storing my clothes in ways that more effectively displayed them and allowed for efficient access. I try to keep folded things (e.g. t-shirts) in a single compact layer, so that I can see them all at once and can see exactly what I have and where it is.
posted by confluency at 11:28 AM on October 4, 2022

My sweetie and I used to trade the IPod of Domesticity for just such tasks.

I know someone who hated sorting the clean laundry and got a large number of big mesh bags, basically one per drawer? Drawer section? So she sorts her clothes as she takes them off, they go through the wash and dry with their fellows, and a whole clean dry bagful gets dumped back into its drawer.

Come to think of it, when she runs out of X it’s easy to do a small quick load of just X. Nice. I don’t know how she’s arranged all the bags to be easy to tell them apart, though.
posted by clew at 11:53 AM on October 4, 2022

Best answer: Figure out something you'd really enjoying once a week, that you can do hands free, and which you haven't been doing because you don't have time for something as frivolous as re-watching old episodes of The Twilight Zone or singing along to DJ Khaled, or catching episodes of The Tudor Monastery Farm, or Kings and Generals. Pick something you will actively look forward to. "Oh man, yes, this is the Twilight Zone episode with the car that makes the guy admit to doing the hit and run, I love this one!" What's missing from your life that will leave your body feeling better and your mood reset when you do it?

Make a date with yourself that you will get to take the half hour or forty-five minutes to do this every week, and sort and fold laundry while you do it.

Don't fold anything you don't have to though. Bed sheet sets can be punched into their matching pillow case. Who cares if they are crushed when you put them into the bed?

Make folding laundry time quality time with a family member who would like to see more of you. Does your spouse want to do a periodic system dump about their dysfunctional job? Bring out the laundry and invite them to help you fold while they tell you about it. Does the pre-teen want to tell you all about the clique wars in her school? If she balls the sock pairs you match for her she can tell you all about Charlotte and Seraphina. Does your Dad feel lonely now that your Mom is gone? Speaker phone while you fold.

When it is time to buy more clothes try and aim for replacing the old ones with clothes that don't need folding as much, and which also won't need to be washed after one wearing. If you wear the same pair of chinos both days of two weekends running that could be three other pairs of pants you didn't have to wash and fold.
posted by Jane the Brown at 1:48 PM on October 4, 2022

Also, when I do inevitably forget about a load I left in the dryer my tactic is to soak a hand or bath towel (depending on the size of the load), throw it in there and run the end of the automatic cycle again, for a makeshift steam cycle.
posted by snuffleupagus at 8:01 AM on October 5, 2022

Sheets and towels are about the only things that get folded here. I cram underwear and nightshirts into a drawer because who cares if they're not folded and we have the room. Jeans, pants and workout gear get rolled, because it's faster than folding and I can shove the rolled jeans and pants onto shelves and throw the rolled workout gear into a box on the bottom of my wardrobe (I'd cram, but I don't have enough room to do that for the workout gear). My shirts hang dry, so I hang them on the same hangers I use in the closet, and move them from the drying rack to the closet some time after they're dry (mostly when we need to use the room the drying rack is set up in).

Socks got solved by buying all the same kind of sock, in black and white, so I can just shove them into a drawer and I just have to reach in and get two white socks or two black socks, none of that tedious pairing and folding/rolling that stretches out the top of one.
posted by telophase at 2:11 PM on October 5, 2022

Forgot to add: my partner just rolls all of their clothes that don't hang up.
posted by telophase at 2:14 PM on October 5, 2022

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