Thursday, February 25, 2010

When laundry goes wrong

I know, I've been a very bad blogger, since our holiday I've been super lazy, and also struggled to get back into my normal routine. The lack of sunshine in the UK in comparison to the sunshine we had in South Africa has also really affected our energy levels... all these things did not help when I put on a load of 'holiday' laundry. Unfortunately, a dark blue scarf made it's way into the 'light laundry' pile. Mr L was kind enough to offer to put the laundry on for me (our washing machine is in the non-heated garage), and since Mr L trusts my laundry sorting skills, he also didn't notice the dark blue scarf...

... you can probably guess what happened next. Out came the laundry, and as I start shaking my new light coloured tops I noticed they looked a little different, hey looked like an amateur attempt at tie-dying. aaaargh! So, what do you do when colours run in your washing? Okay, well it goes without saying that sorting the laundry properly before loading the washing machine can avoid these things all together, but these things happen right? Here's how to fix that annoying problem if it happens to you.

Laundry colour-run rescue

  1. Remove the dark/non-colour fast item from the laundry load and put the rest of the laundry load back into the washing machine. Do not let any of the items dry, and acting as fast as possible is imperative to getting the colouring out again.
  2. Products may vary between countries, in the UK you can buy colour run remover from Dylon, or simply Google 'colour run remover' to see what products are available, a product like this is designer for the job and if you can get hold of some, using this as soon as possible is the best way to save your discoloured laundry.
  3. If you cannot get hold of a colour-run remover immediately, then take action by soaking items in a all-colour laundry bleach such as Vanish/Oxybleach before putting the laundry back on a regular wash cycle.
  4. White clothing can be bleached using laundry bleach to soak overnight.
  5. If you have a colour catcher (a handy cloth you can put in with your washing to stop colours running), putting that in with your ruined load can also help remove the colour that has run.

Hopefully after these treatments, your should be able to save most of the laundry load, remember that cottons and linens will be more absorbent than polyester fabrics, so they might need soaking for longer or stronger solutions. The last thing you can attempt if all else fails is to actually dye your ruined clothes properly in a darker shade, but even that is a bit of a risk... so you can always just save your ruined shirts for the next time you paint a wall... that is to wear, so that you don't ruin your good clothes - take note Mr L!

Have you ever had your laundry turn pink or blue? Please share, that way I don't have to feel alone. :)


Ivy said...

Hi! Good to "see" you. :)
Very good to know! I did not know these things and I feel the highest joy inside my heart knowing that I can prevent and fix color-running problems. I hate washing my white clothes for example that have decorative dark-colored stipes or patterns on the edges b/c they always run.

However, I have trouble with bleach because sometimes it tends to turn my white-whites...yellow(bleghk). I am always careful not to use too much bleach. What Am I doing wrong?

A note on perfection

Many of the posts featured on this blog are about doing household chores the correct, or so to say perfect way. My intention is not to make readers feel that the way they are running their households are wrong. So if making the bed, or ironing shirts in a certain way doesn't fit your lifestyle, do not feel guilty about it. But by learning the correct way of doing things it might just come in handy for those times when special guests are staying, or when you need to iron that shirt perfectly for a job interview. So enjoy the learning, but skip the guilt and LOVE your homes. x

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