b. Colored clothing.
2. Mend rents, except in stockings.
3. Remove stains (pages 282 to 306).
4. Put as many white clothes to soak as is practicable. Some colored clothes having fast colors may be soaked if very much soiled.
The purpose of soaking soiled clothes before washing them is to soften and separate the fibers of cloth in order to loosen dirt. Water alone accomplishes this purpose to a great extent; but the use of a soap solution, or a soap solution to which has been added borax, ammonia, or other alkali, and turpentine, kerosene, or benzine, makes the washing process both easier and quicker.
It is well before beginning the washing to make a soap solution, as it gives a quick suds and is more easily handled, and its use will, therefore, save time.
All the clothing should not be put to soak in the same tub. If three tubs are available, table linen and clean towels should be soaked in one, bed linen and body linen in a second, soiled towels and cloths in a third. If only two tubs are available, table linen and clean towels may be washed without preliminary soaking. Soiled towels and cloths should always be soaked before washing.
If colds have prevailed in a family, the handkerchiefs should be put to soak in a solution of boric acid in a basin by themselves, and should be separately washed and boiled for twenty minutes.
The garment to be soaked should be wet, the more soiled part rubbed with soap solution, and that part folded in. Each garment should be folded and rolled separately and packed into the tub with the other garments. Folding and rolling prevents the dirt in the soiled parts from spreading. The clothes are then covered with warm soapy water, to which may have been added an alkali such as borax or ammonia, and an oily substance, perhaps turpentine, kerosene, or benzine. Directions for making soap solutions are given on page 256. The tub should be covered, and if possible the clothing allowed to soak in it during several hours or overnight. If colored clothes are to be soaked, they should be covered with warm water or with water very slightly soapy. No alkali should be used with the colored clothing.
No arbitrary order can be recommended for washing clothes, but flannels, white goods, and colored goods should be washed separately as the washing process differs somewhat for each case.
A few simple explanations may aid the houskeeper in solving some of her problems. Heat tends to expand the threads of the cloth, and the expansion aids in removing dirt caught between the threads. If the cloth is cooled during the washing process, the thread contracts and the dirt is again entangled; consequently, after the cloth has once been warmed, one of the objects of the launderer should be to maintain an even or a rising temperature. In the commercial laundry, an even temperature is kept by turning the correct amount of steam into the washing-machine. In the home laundry boiling water added from time to time will aid in keeping an even temperature. A. good suds is necessary in the washing process. As the suds falls, that is, as it is used up by uniting with dirt, more suds should be supplied by adding more soap or soap solution. If insufficient soap is used, insoluble black specks are often left on the clothing.
All utensils, receptacles, and apparatus should be immaculately clean.
Order of washing white linen and cotton clothes :
1. Put water on to heat.
2. Make soap solution.
3. Rinse clothes from water in which they have soaked.
4. Wash clothes in warm suds in following order: a. Table linen and clean towels b. Bed linen c. Body linen d. Handkerchiefs e. Soiled towels and cloths f. Stockings
5. Wash again in clean suds. Wring.
6. Boil in clean, slightly soapy water.
7. Rinse in clean, clear water. Wring.
8. Rinse in bluing water. Wring.
10. Hang to dry.
11. Remove from line, dampen, and fold.