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Frugal Pinterest Project March 16, 2012

Posted by thecouponjunkie in Uncategorized.
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The Frugal Pinterest Project Make Using Fabric Softener More Affordable

 I just love Pinterest and the more I look the more interesting ideas that I discover.  Today we are going to look at DIY Fabric Softener.  What I found was find of a WOW moment.  It is made with hair conditioner.  Yup, you read that correctly, hair conditioner.  Several of the places that I read said the cheaper the better.  I used what I had on hand from my coupon stock pile.  As a part of today’s post we will do a two for one special. We will also discuss DIY Dryer Sheets.  Since the two go together.  You can first make your own fabric softner and then use the fabric softener to make your own dryer sheets.  So here we go.

First we will tackle the DIY Fabric Softener. 

You need:  Cheap Conditioner (One site recommended Suave), Vinegar, Boiling Water, Whisk, bowl and a container to keep it in.  

What to do:  

Step one: Boil 6 cups of water.  I actually boiled more so that the finish product had 6 cups.   

Step two:  Combine the 6 cups of water with 2 cups of conditioner.  Stir this until it is dissolved in the water.  I noticed that it was easier to use a whisk then to just use a spoon.  It took about 2 or 3 minutes to get it all mixed in.  I started with a spoon but switched half way when it was lumpy and wasn’t mixing as well.

Step three: Add in 3 cups of vinegar.  I used apple cider vinegar.  I would highly recommend just using the regular distilled version.  The smell is much stronger with the kind I used (just because I had it on hand).  Just stir it in and then you set to put it in a container to store it in.  I would recommend a container that has a small pour spout.  You can use an old softener/detergent bottle if you have one, I would just recommend washing it out really well before you put anything in it.  ( Note to self– will not be using Apple cider vinegar again that on the next batch.)

To use your homemade Fabric Softener you can simply put 2-3 tablespoon in the small compartment in your washer or you can use a Downy Ball if you have one.  Wash your clothes like you normally would. 

What I noticed when I used it was that the smell was vinegar was strong upon putting it in the machine but not as I was pulling it out of the washer.  I did notice that my clothes were soft as I pulled them out of the dryer.  Mission accomplished.

Cost:

Conditioner:  You can buy V05 or Suave at the Dollar Tree for about $1.00 or you can go to a large chain store and get it for about $1.15.  If you have a coupon you can get it cheaper.  I used some that I had already had on hand which I paid $0.50  for after sale and coupon.  

Vinegar: A small bottle of vinegar at the large chain stores is about $1.00.  During the summer months there are coupon for vinegar and I was able to use some from my stock pile that I paid $0.35 for the bottle.  I only used about half of it.  

Water:  Used it out of the tap

Storage bottle:  I used an empty detergent bottle that I rinsed out really well.  But you can get one at the Dollar Tree for $1.00 if you needed. You can even use a old milk container.

Total Cost:

Without coupons or sale:  $3.00 if you need to buy a bottle other wise $2.00. 

Cost for me with coupon and sales:  $0.85

This makes a lot, about a gallon.  I was surprised at just how little it took to make the clothes soft.  I can’t wait to see just how long this will last.  

I can also report that if you wanted to use a Downy Ball it is about $2.00 at the chain stores. This should be a one time only cost since you can reuse until your heart is content.  🙂 I had received one in a gift basket or sample of some sort, so I had one on hand. I like using it instead of putting it in the slot in the washing machine.  It just seemed to get it all out where the machine left some in there.

Some other benefits of making your own is the green factor or less chemicals.  Since we normally can’t use fabric softener because of allergies and the chemicals in it, I am super excited. I know that for years on loads that are really stinky I have just used about a 1/4 cup of straight vinegar so I am looking forward to having the softness back.  

So overall I am in love with the DIY version.  

Pinterest Link:  http://pinterest.com/pin/16818198578343026/

Original Link from pinterest: http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/02/homemade-fabric-softener-finally.html

 Part 2: DIY Dryer Sheets  

I have also read many other blogs and post about people using their DIY softener and turning it into dryer sheets.  This is kind of amazing to me because one we can’t use store bought dryer sheets of any kind due to allergies and skin sensitivities and two the cost just seems so large.  I know that you can get coupons for the dryer sheets but $0.50 off a box that runs $4.50 seems a bit much. So this project seemed do-able since I now have made my own fabric softener and I wanted to give it a try.  

You Need: Fabric softner (store bought or DIY from above), fabric of some sort (this can be scraps or old wash clothes, or microfiber towel peices, the options are endless) a tub of some sort with a lid, hot water, and scissors

What to do:

There are two ways that you can do these. You can do a wet version and a dry version.

Here are the steps for the wet version.

Step one: Cut your fabric scraps into 3×5 rectangles.  I just eyeballed it. If you come into my laundry room to measure with a ruler, we might share a good laugh when we find I was slightly off. If you have pinking shears, I would recommend using them because it will keep them fabric from fraying. If you are using old rags there is not need to cut, the size they come in will work just fine.  I ended up using both scraps and scraps of micro- fiber towel that I had left from another project. Now place them in your tub.

Step two: Mix four parts fabric softener with 10 parts hot water.  I ended up using 1 cup fabric softner and 2 1/2 cups water.  Once it was mixed I just poured the mixture over over the rags in the old baby wipe container.  

To Use Wet Version:

Simply pull one out of the container, wring out as much of the liquid and throw it in with your clothes.  When you are done with the load just put the piece of cloth back in the tub to soak up the softness goodness and you will be ready for the next load.

Here are the steps to make the dry version:

Step one: Cut your fabric scraps into 3×5 rectangles.  I just eyeballed it. If you come into my laundry room to measure with a ruler, we might share a good laugh when we find I was slightly off. If you have pinking shears, I would recommend using them because it will keep them fabric from fraying. If you are using old rags there is not need to cut, the size they come in will work just find.  I ended up using both scraps and scraps of micro- fiber towel that I had left from another project. Now place them in your tub.

 Step two: Mix four parts fabric softener with 10 parts hot water.  I ended up using 1 cup fabric softener and 2 1/2 cups water.  Once it was mixed I just poured the mixture over over the rags that I placed in a wash tub I had on hand.  

 Step three:  Pull out several sheets and wring them out.  Hang them to dry.  I would recommend doing at least a weeks worth of sheets at a time.You can do more if you would like, it just depends on how many scraps you have on hand. I hung them over a hanger or four from my drying rack that hangs in the laundry room.  When they are dry I put them in an old baby wipe container to store them until it was time to use.  But you must make sure they are very dry.

TO USE the DIY Dryer sheets Dry version:

Simply just pull one out of your dry container and throw in with your clothes.  You can use this 2-3 times before having to redo the process of loading it with more softener.  

The cost is the same no matter what version you do. The difference would be in the time that it take for the dry version to dry before being able to use them.  

 Cost: 

Fabric softener : I used the DIY Fabric softer cost was $0.85 for a gallon of it. Otherwise it will depend on what you spend on store bought fabric softener.

Tube with lid:  I had on one hand but if you need one you can find some at Dollar Tree $1.00  There are several different kinds to choose from in the food container aisle that would work nicely. You can even use a old baby wipe container.

Fabric: I used scraps I had on hand so the cost was FREE.  One of my favorite words. I would have just thrown it away other wise.

Scissors: I already has several on hand.

Water: From the tap

Total Cost: $1.85 if you need to use the DIY kind.

Cost for me:  $0.85

Pros and Cons:

The pros of the dryer sheets, no matter which version you use is the first cost and second the go green and no chemical if you are using the DIY Softener.  Even if you are using store bought you can make them cheaper then buying them.

The wet version does take less time but can be very messy between loads especially if you do it in a hurry and it drips as you are wringing it out.  

The dry version does take longer to get ready to use but you can use it for multiple washes before you need to reload them so to speak.  I liked having several of them done up ahead of time, even though I could reuse them, just in case I took the laundry out and set it on the couch to fold later.  (I know I am not the only one with this lovely habit.)  I still had one that was ready to go. 

 What I did notice that made this easier for me what that I had one baby wipe container with the mixture in it and one baby wipe container that had the dry ones in it.  As I would use the dryer sheets and thought that they would need to be redone, I put them in the wet container to soak up some soft goodness and just hung them up to dry when I had several that were soaking.  This made this task not so tiresome task.  I also put the recipe taped to the container for the measurements so that they were easy to find.  One thing I thought of at the end is you could just put the scraps in the container and fill it with the mixture as you need it instead of letting the mixture just sit in the container.  

There were several sights that said that they would take one of the scraps and instead of soaking or soaking and drying that they put the mixture in a spray bottle.  Shake the spray bottle before use, spray about 10 sprays on a scrap and throw it in with their clothes.  I have not tried that method but wanted you to know that it was an option.

Pinterest link: http://pinterest.com/pin/16818198578342859/

Original Blog link: http://www.thriftyfun.com/tf274635.tip.html

There was also   http://www.homemademamas.net/2011/01/reusable-dryer-sheets.html

I hope you are enjoying this new series and the lovely things on Pinterest.  Hope you find this information helpful and money saving.  Until our Frugal Pinterest Project.  Happy Pinning and Savings 🙂

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