Archive for August, 2011
Young adults across the country are packing up their rooms and heading to colleges across the country. What they need more than great study skills is to load up on dorm room friendly items to help making living in a small space easier.
At sort-a-sack we have always believed that our product is the perfect way to manage laundry. It helps students pre-sort their dirty clothes so they are less likely to ruin their favorite sweater the first time they do laundry on their own. It also has the washing instructions printed directly on the bag, so there’s no need to call mom at 2am when they finally get down to the laundry room. And, it is not only a laundry bag, but a laundry backpack, meaning students can strap it to their backs rather than drag a heavy bag behind them. Finally, it has a sturdy hook so it can hang on the back of a door and leave that precious floor space totally free from laundry.
To recap, sort-a-sack is the perfect dorm room accessory because it:
- Pre-sorts laundry
- Has washing instructions printed directly on the bag
- Has backpack straps for easy carrying
- Can hang on the back of a door, freeing up floor space
It turns out, we’re not the only ones who thing sort-a-sack is the real deal.
Here is a video from The Mal Pearson show featuring sort-a-sack.
Head to minute 4:50:
Sort-a-sack on Mal Pearson Show
What do your college bound kids use for their laundry? Or do they wait and bring it home?
When I think about activities that may be bad for the environment, laundry is not the first thought that pops up. But the truth is that laundry can use a lot of energy and put a number of pollutants into the world. There is good news though — just a few changes can make a big difference.
- For those of us with older washing machines, consider using an environmentally friendly detergent. One of the most well-known ones is Ecover, which only uses plant based ingredients and is completely biodegradable. It can be found at Whole Foods. Click here for coupons.
- If you are in the market for a new washing machine, consider choosing one with the Energy Star label. It uses less energy and will save more than 7,000 gallons of water a year.
- Using warm water expends a lot more energy than running a cold wash, so try to choose cold water whenever possible. 90 percent of energy used to wash clothing is in heating the water. Plus, washing in cold water will prevent clothing from fading.
- Consider hanging clothes to dry, or not drying your entire load. This will lead to a shorter drying cycle, saving energy.
If you can’t get enough information on green laundry tips, TLC has 10 Green Laundry Tips on their website.
Have you taken any steps to “greenify” your laundry process? I’d love to hear.
When you look at beautiful catalogs from Container Store, Pottery Barn, or West Elm there’s a whole lot to be excited about. Schools is almost here, which means that it’s time to get your house, kids, and family organized. But have you lost your organizing mojo? That seems to be the case for many families who are struggling to get organized and get learning once again.
After reading a few articles about how to get and stay organized, I realized there was a tool that was cheap, pretty to look at, and truly effective. It was something I could find at almost every store. The big organizing secret? Baskets and storage containers.
I rounded up a few of my absolute favorite containers. Take a look…
1. Plastic Storage Bin from Target — $6.99
These bins are great for organizing a lot of things. At the end of a school year, I usually purchase one of two of these to house old projects and notebooks that I think my kids might want to go through one day. I also use these to store sweaters during the summer, and boots during the winter.
2. Magazine Files from Ikea — $1.99 for 5
If you’re like me and love looking at beautiful pictures of perfectly organized spaces then you get a lot of magazines. I keep mine organized using these extremely affordable magazine files from Ikea.
3. Pretty Storage Baskets from Amazon — $38.03 for 3
These are a bit on the smaller size, but they’re great for fitting in bookshelves as a way to wrangle the smaller things. I have one for cards, another for change, and so on. This way what used to sit around looking ugly now has a place to live unnoticed.
4. Galvanized Bins from Amazon — $99 for 6
If you’re into a more industrial look, and don’t mind a splurge, these galvanized bins from Amazon are great. They hold a ton, but they also look super cool so you won’t mind having them sitting around your home.
5. Leather Storage Bench from Overstock.co — $111.99
If you’ve got more to hide than just piles here and there, a piece of furniture that doubles as storage is always a good answer. Use it to keep office supplies or board games. Not only will it provide extra seating, but it will help keep your home clutter free.
What types of containers do you like to use for storage? Did I hit on any of your favorites?
Yesterday I posted a laundry fact Facebook: The average American family does 8-10 loads of laundry each week. Here are some more interesting facts:
- A single load of laundry takes around one hour and twenty seven minutes to finish, including washing and drying.
- According to the Stevenson Company, only 17 percent of homes had separate laundry rooms in 1992, while 57 percent have a separate laundry room in 2006. 15 percent of homes have laundry in the basement.
- LuxuryRealEstate.com reported that 61 percent of new homes have laundry on the upper floors.
- GE states that only 3.5 percent of families have their laundry in the kitchen.
Based on these statistics it seems that laundry is becoming a bigger and bigger force in the lives of American families. Why is that?
My theory is that as families have become so much busier with activities, school, and socializing that organization has become even more key to living an easier life. Laundry is a chore that can be time consuming, but also straight forward and soothing if you do it consistently, and have an organization plan in place. By pre-sorting laundry, and having a designated spot for dirty clothes other than the floor of your child’s bedroom, half the work is already done when it comes time to do laundry.
Additionally, as more importance is put on appearance, clothing becomes more of a part of everyday life. It’s no surprise that consumers are looking for stylish and convenient laundry rooms.
One more interesting fact: The average size of a laundry room for families who make over $100k is 82 square feet; however, without taking income into account, the average family’s laundry room is 47 square feet.
Does organization in the laundry arena matter to you? Do you covet a separate, large laundry room on your 2nd floor? I’d love to hear some thoughts.