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I love.... God, hubby, my posse of kids, wool, jelly beans, quilting, my Canon 50d, watermelon, fabric, Philadelphia Soft Pretzels, TastyCakes, my Bunco girls, laughing, my chickens, antique quilts, buttons, sewing, photography, freshly bathed babies, camping, the sound of snow falling at night, Fiestaware, Elm Creek Quilt books, and a whole lot more! I am a Pastor's wife,a homeschooling mom, a proud Navy mom, and am just downright busy!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Going a Little Green!

 I've been hearing about homemade laundry detergent lately.   I have a few friends who have made it. Some have made liquid and others dry detergent.

I had the ingredients on hand to make the dry:
1 bar Ivory Soap (or Fels Naptha), grated
1 cup Borax
2 cups baking soda.
(the recipe calls for washing soda (use gloves) but I had baking soda here. I had the family size. See one of my original posts re 'burning down the house.))

I picked up a used cheese grater at the thrift store yesterday for grating the soap. I thought it would be harder than it was to remove the soap off the grater. It was easy w/ a brush.

Anyway, I grated the Ivory Soap Bar into an old candy bucket.  

  Looks like coconut, no?

Then I added the Borax and baking soda.

Then I mixed it up well!

Wouldn't you know it? All my laundry was caught up. How often does that happen?
Anyway, I scrounged up some socks, underwear, and a few t-shirts for my 'experiment'!
I added 2 scoops of detergent. Each scoop measures approximately 1 1/2 TBSP of detergent.

2 scoops! No candy!

The hard part about this is that the detergent doesn't produce suds, probably because there is no phosphate. I read that most detergents that advertise 'Phosphate Free' actually substitute something I can't pronounce instead. It's called nitrioltriacetic acid (NTA), which is actually carcinogenic in small amounts. Can you imagine big amounts? 

I feel like I defeated my purpose of saving money. I usually do not wash such a small load, and on hot. Yikes. But... I had to have a picture of it washing!  It's all in the name of science! You can see the dirty water. Hey - I have 4 boys, what do you expect?  

I will let you know how it performs and how long it lasts. I know it's cheaper than Era or Gain!

** UPDATE 4/4/11**
I love the soap! It seems to get everything clean and it and the clothes smell fresh! I even scored a bottle of the liquid last week and I like that a lot too!  I am making another batch of dry, as I ran out this morning. This time I am using the Fels Naptha soap and Arm & Hammer Washing Soda (both available at Smiths in the laundry/softener aisle).  The Fels Naptha is harder to grate, took about 10 minutes longer to do so, but it smells good.

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