Saturday, October 27, 2012

Update on Block of the Month Quilt & More on Farm Laundry

This is my block of the month project that I am working on.
I have six more redwork blocks to do.  
The blocks are thread painted by machine instead of hand stitched. 
If you click on the picture, you will see that I printed out a plan on EQ7 that is hanging in a blank spot on the design wall.  It gave me an idea of how I wanted to place my blocks.  My design board is too small for a queen size quilt, but it still helps on block placement.
The book called "Redwork Winter Twittterings" by Pearl Louise Kruch below is the patterns that I am using in my quilt.  Her patterns are really cute!  If you are interested, this book can be found on Amazon's website.

 Last week I talked about farm laundry and I've been asked about what laundry soap that I use.  The last several months I have been experimenting with making my own soap.  I have bought laundry soap from a  local salesman for the last 25 years and he is retiring.  Laundry soap is expensive and I thought that I would take this opportunity to try out making my own.  I have seen different recipes on internet and decided to do my own recipe.

First I measure out 2 quarts of cold soften water and pour it into a sturdy plastic 1 gallon container.
Next I heat up 4 cups of water in a 2 quart glass measuring cup to almost boiling in the microwave.
I add:  3/4 cup Borax
3/4 cup Washing Soda
1/2 cup Dawn (original) Dish Soap
1/2 cup Sun Oxygen Cleaner
I stir until everything dissolves and let it cool to room temperature.
The mixture is then added to the water and it will bubble up.  I hate seeing soap go down the drain so I will let the bubbles settle down and add water till it equals a gallon.  Each time I use the soap, I shake up the jug to make sure it is well mixed.  I use 1/8 to 1/4 cup of soap per load of laundry.  It works well in my old fashioned washer.  I have no idea of how it works in other washers.
I also have been using white vinegar as a fabric softener and to my surprise it really does work.  Since winter is coming, I don't know how it will work with the static cling that comes when it is so dry in the house.  I use only a 1/2 cup and I am blessed with a washing machine that has a special place to put softener. My laundry comes out smelling fresh with no vinegar smell.

I also use laundry soap nuts.  You can find them at: 
They work really well, but on Dean's farm laundry we need the heavy duty stuff.
If you try out soap nuts, please make sure you buy the soap nuts without the nut inside.  I have read that they will stain and ruin clothes.  We are only talking about the shells.  When I use them, I heat up a mug of water in the microwave.  Then I put the cloth bag of soap nuts in the mug of hot water.  This will release the natural soap in the nuts.  This way you can still wash in warm and cold water.

I am new at this and I am not a chemist.
We will see how this works out over time.  There are other recipes on internet, but I don't see myself grading up soap bars. I'd rather be working on a sewing project ;)

We are still in the middle of harvest.  I even helped fix the combine.  Sometimes Dean literally needs an extra hand to hold things while he's working.
Our thoughts and prayers are with those that will be affected by the hurricane that is predicted to hit the east coast of the United States this weekend.  If you live on the east coast, please be safe!

Happy Quilting!

Kay Lynne


Anonymous said...

very interesting about the laundry liquard i am going to have a go at making some,thankyou for sharing.xx

Needled Mom said...

Your blocks are just beautiful.

My grandmother always grated her own soap for all of the farm laundry. She also used the old wringer machines even after the modern ones came out as she felt they did a much better job.