Washing By Hand

12" x 24" Glass Washboard

Nothing to me is more reminiscent of a bygone era of early pioneers making their own way in the world than the thought of washing laundry by hand. I do have a conventional washer and dryer but I want to reduce the amount of resources I use and become more self sufficient while honing my homesteading skills.

I found a washboard at Home Hardware and ordered it. I had it sent to my local store so that I could avoid paying shipping and handling. Today I walked up to the hardware store and now I am the proud owner of an Economy Glass washboard #52 manufactured by The Canadian Woodenware Co. This washboard is 12″ x 24″.

On the back of the washboard they have printed the following brief history:

Canadian Woodenware Co. was founded at St. Thomas Ontario in 1916. A Canadian company that makes wood washboards. The Economy, Pearl, The Canuck, Empire Globe, Jubilee, All Wood Rub, are just a few of the washboards from the past. We continue the traditions of the original washboards created by hand in Havelock, Ontario, Canada.

I won’t be washing all my clothes by hand yet but I will be doing some! I plan to hang every hand washed load to drip dry making the process as energy efficient and self sufficient as I can.

It really is the little things that make me happy and today I am smiling about socks that will no longer look dingy!

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10 thoughts on “Washing By Hand

      • I think it went really well! I washed one rack of laundry which is equal to a third of a sink sopping wet. \i soaked as you suggested but I used the same amount of soap I use in a full washer machine (one rounded teaspoon of homemade laundry detergent). I scrubbed each piece and dropped it back in the soapy water until I was done scrubbing everything. I emptied the water out of the sink and refilled it a 1/3 again with clean water and scrubbed the pieces again. I drained and repeated a third time only this time I used the washboard to scrub the water out of the pieces. I hand wrung each piece and carefully hung it on the rack. The only concern I have is getting the clothes dry in this old house without them smelling dank.
        I cannot wait to do this again!
        Any suggestions????

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh man, drying has been a big issue for us. I have only had one day where laundry actually dried on the line in the same day. What we’ve been doing is hanging the laundry while the sun is out, then running the generator to finish up in the dryer for a few minutes at night. It’s just been so humid here!
        If you are going to handwash on a regular basis, think about gettings tubs. It’s a lot easier than working in the sink.

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      • I did have to use my dryer at the end of the evening even though I kept the laundry hung in the warmest area of the house (65 degrees F is not that warm for laundry it seems). We still have frost in the mornings but Spring is coming! I will be able to hang my laundry outside once the rainy season slows.
        Do you hand wring your laundry before hanging?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, definitely, yes. It would take years to dry otherwise. I’m thinking about buying one of those things that look like giant pasta rollers. Do you know what I’m talking about?

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      • You want a mangle! I believe they are also called a wringer depending on where you are from. I found two on lehmans.com but they are very expensive. I think your best bet if you are handy is to fashion one yourself. We had a wringer washer when I was growing up and I loved it!

        Liked by 1 person

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