Organizing Your Socks – How Do You Keep Them Under Control?

This sock organizing post is brought to you by Sock Dots, sock identification in a snap.  

 

 

19 Ways to Organize Your Socks - 52 Week Organized Home Challenge

 

Are you ready to get started? I know I am.  It’s crazy really.  My socks are overflowing to the max.  I think my MIL gets my kids all sorts of different socks for Christmas each year.  I buy them socks when they need them, too.  AND apparently we never get rid of them, unless they have holes in them.  So….. getting through the sock basket is a really exciting thing for me!  I’ve had this overflowing basket in my room for months. Literally.  Months!  (I told you I was a disorganized mess!)  It vomits all over my floor on a regular basis.  I start wondering why I’m wading through socks and realize that someone must have been looking all the way to the bottom of the sock basket to find the perfect match. So, currently, my system goes like this.

 

1.  Do a load of laundry

 

2.  Fold all clothes from said load, including matching any socks that go together.

 

3.  If the socks don’t have a match, they go into a laundry basket that is especially for unmatched socks.

 

4.  Some day, I will match socks from basket if I ever get desperate enough.

 

5.  Be afraid of throwing them away.  You may have the other sock in the laundry.  (ha…that doesn’t help me one bit, does it?)

 

SO, as you can see.  My sock system isn’t working very well for me.  I have several hundred unmatched socks.  Seriously.  We have 9 people of differing sized feet in our house.  We have a lot of socks.  We have more unmatched socks than matched socks because apparently, I never wash the right socks together in a load.  Here’s a picture:

My Sock Basket - Time to Get Organized!

 

I’ve threatened to start over, but I can’t bear the thought of spending $100 or more in socks for the family when we already have so many pairs.  I’m out to find a system that works better for me.  Ultimately, I need to get rid of all the ones that have no matches.  I need every sock in the family to have a match and if it doesn’t, it’s going to have to go away.

Last week, when I announced that we are going to work on socks, I was amazed at all the awesome ideas that you sent me.  You all are brilliant!!  There are so many great ideas to try.  I was really excited about one product in particular, that you could use to really simplify your sock sorting if you happen to have a large assortment of socks that aren’t exactly the same (like me), but you don’t want to go purchase all new socks (also like me). A big thank you to Clary who told me about the company, Sock Dots.

Sock Dots

Sock Dots for sorting Mismatched Socks

Sock Dots are a way to color code your socks, so that you know who they belong to.  Each person is assigned a color and you snap the sock dot onto the sock, so that they can be easily and quickly matched with it’s owner and it’s mate.  It stays on permanently, even through the washer and dryer!   I know what you’re thinking…..what if that one person has a bunch of different kinds of socks, then what?  Well…get a Match Maker Tin.  Here’s the explanation of that from their website:

Match Maker Tins are designed to match up a specific pairs of socks. Socks with the same color Sockdot combinations (ie Red top/ Yellow center) belong together. This insures the wearer the same wear and tear on that mated pair.

As you can see, I think that Sock Dots would be an excellent way to organize our mounds of socks.  I think maybe a mom came up with that idea.  :)  What do you think?

 

Ask the Readers:  How Do You Organize Your Socks?

(Pin this picture!)

19 Ways to Organize Socks - SidetrackedSarah.com

Here’s more of the ideas that you all sent me.  If you sent me an idea and it’s not featured don’t feel bad.  Either it’s a repeat or very similar to another idea that is already on this list, or I just simply didn’t have any more room.

Crystal says:  “On the socks I don’t bother to match them….too time consuming. However each person in my house has a mini basket on their dresser that I just drop their socks into. When I buy new socks I toss out ALL the ones that were in the basket before I put the new ones in.”

Linda of Apron Strings & Other Things shares about how they have a sock basket similar to mine….but her system works quite a bit better than mine has.  I have a feeling she has a better place for her basket.  :)

Julie says:  “I buy all the same color and type of socks for each of my children – that way if one goes missing its mate has a whole drawer of new mates!”

Judi says:  “We have eight children. When doing the laundry the children have a bowl with elastics in their room. They are to put their socks in pairs and put an elastic around either the top or the toes. No more socks being eaten by the washing machine and putting socks away is a breeze, they are already together.”

Sarah D. says:  My tip for keeping track of those socks that are missing a mate: 
I hang up a shoe bag (in the laundry room or a closet) and organize the socks into pockets. You can do it by person and then by color/style, depending on how abundant your spare sock population is. We have one organized into little guy socks, little girl socks, big boy whites, big boy darks, big boy colors, Mom’s, Dad’s whites and Dad’s darks. Periodically I’ll go through them and throw away any that seem to be hopelessly parted.

Dawn says:  I keep my socks organized by buying each kid different socks. My oldest likes to mismatch, so hers are all different colors and designs. The youngest only has pink Old Navy gripper socks. The two boys in the middle, one has gray w/ colored heels and the other has white with colored heels, all from Target. No matching necessary! Just sort into the right basket and away you go!

JoLynn says: I have a basket that i throw all the socks into when I’m folding clothes. Then I have the kids sort and fold them.  About once a month, when i know all the clothes (or most of them have been washed ) i throw the extras away. I figure if the match shows up we have tons of socks anyway. 

J. Woody says:  I bought all of my children and myself a lingerie bag to put our dirty socks in. 

Lori says:  I buy at least two packages of the same identical types of socks, which are different from other household members’ socks (my current ones are Hanes with grey bottoms, which also don’t look as dirty when they get older), and just stack them in a pile. When one disappears or gets holes, I throw it out and barely notice. If you start to notice there are fewer, start with three packs or buy another pack. (Only open one pack at first though, to make sure you like them first.) 

Tricia says:  My sock trick is just for my husband and I (our 4 boys have left the nest).   First, I go through my sock drawer and match everything up. All single socks go in a clear zip lock bag – bag goes in the sock drawer.  Then periodically, the singles will appear while I am folding clean laundry so I get the zip lock bag out and match the socks together.  Use plastic clothes pins to match them when they are dirty. There is a certain brand that can go through the dryer. I’m still trying to train my husband and my kids (I am willing to pay my kids for each clip, but at least my socks are so easy to fold. I guess if you bought enough you wouldn’t have to un-clip them, just toss in drawers.  Eventually when it is clear that a missing sock is gone forever then that one becomes a dusting or polishing cloth.

Sarah P. says: I use plastic clothes pins to match them when they are dirty. There is a certain brand that can go through the dryer. I’m still trying to train my husband and my kids (I am willing to pay my kids for each clip, but at least my socks are so easy to fold. I guess if you bought enough you wouldn’t have to un-clip them, just toss in drawers.) 

Amy says:  I clip lost socks on a line strung across the ceiling of the laundry room, they usually get collected now not so much when the kids were little though!

Holly says:  I make these cute little signs to hang in laundry rooms for those pesky missing socks (you wouldn’t believe how many matches I ended up pairing up because of this)

Sock Holder

 

Jennifer says:   I have the BEST way I have ever heard of to keep socks organized.  I buy ONLY one kind of sock for starters.  It’s from Belk and it’s called Gold Toe.  I only buy crew (middle ground for those who like tall and those who like short.  Gold Toe labeled their socks with a stripes, more stripes for bigger sizes.  We purchased a “sock tower” , as we call it, from Target.  It is a large plastic look alike piece of furniture.  It comes in different colors plastic but ours is just the standard white with clear drawers.  All drawers are labeled with masking tape ; a 1, 2, or 3.  Those are the three drawers at the top.  The two larger drawers at the bottom go for big kids (12 and up) socks AND church socks for all sizes.  Again, or the older kids socks I have only crew and they are sized 10-13 (that is only one size by the way).  That is as big as I have so farJ  The two larger drawers at the bottom are also labeled BOYS CHURCH SOCKS or GIRLS CHURCH SOCKS.  Again I only get gold toe church socks as they are “pre-labeled” from the factory.  One, two, or three stripes.  NO MATCHING EVER REQUIED!!  Church socks do have to be more matched than regular, but at least they get in the right size drawer because they (meaning kiddos) count the stripes, even if they don’t make the match.  When we are given socks we re-gift them, or give them back to the person who gave them to us – politely explaining why.

Marianne says:  I have a clothes line with lonely socks. I have them all hanging so they can easily be paired if the other turns up in the next wash. Every 6 months I put all the single socks away. I pair them with the ones that were put away 6 months ago if I can and the remainding of the batch of single socks I put away 6 months ago are thrown out.  Here’s a picture:

Mismatched socks on a clothes line

 

Elizabeth says: I can relate to the sock problem and I have a solution.  The rings that are left on bottles and milk jugs.. To remove these use a butter knife and pry up.  Put the ring around the pair of socks before washing. Use the milk jug ones for thicker adult socks. This works great. No sorting or lost socks after drying.  

Laurie says:   Mismatched socks: I keep a bag in the laundry room that all mismatched socks go into.  Once in awhile we go through the bag and look for matches.  (Turns out my 4 yr old has great talent and patience for this)  We matched up almost 20 pairs of socks last time we went through the bag.

My other big annoyance is trying to get out the door, and one child (or more) can’t find a pair of socks.  In cold months I now keep several pairs of socks in the closet near the door.  This is my “emergency stash” that I draw from when when time is of the essence and socks are needed.  (You just have to remember to replenish the stash on laundry day.)
Have you noticed that sock companies are starting to make it easier for us moms?  Sometimes we have problems matching socks because we have two different sizes that are the same color and brand.  Last time I bought socks, the smallest size had one line of color near the toes, middle size had two lines and large size had 3 lines.  It makes matching so much easier.  Sometimes it’s hard to buy a different brand for each child, though that too can work if there are enough options available.
Jennie says: I have a gallon ziplock bag in my laundry room and any odd socks are put in there. When it gets full I match up any that are pairs. After a while I trash the ones that are still odd.   Another way (which I need to do) is buy the same brand & color socks each time for each person that way I should always have matching ones!

Unfortunately I did not quite finish my sock basket (yet).  I went away on vacation before I could get it completely done, but you should see how many we have folded so far!  My plan is to finish matching them up and to start by throwing out all of the ones with no mates.  Then, I will throw away any bad condition, stained and/or thread bare socks.  Finally, I will give each person in the house 10 pairs of socks and start using the Sock Dots system.  I will keep some of the extra pairs, just in case we lose some, but I’m not going to allow the sock clutter to take over my bedroom again!

 

What about you?  How did you do with YOUR socks?  If you have more ideas, please leave a comment, we want to hear them!!

Now It’s Your Turn!

Next week we are going to be working on our vehicles!  Do you have a great system down to keeping your vehicle cleaned out?  Do me a favor and email me, leave me a comment or post about it on Facebook.  I’d love to hear about it so that I can share it with the rest of my readers.  Pictures would be great to see, too!

If you want to know what we’re working on next, please go to the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge page.

Will you join me in this 52 Week Organized Home Challenge?


10 Unusual Dish Soap Uses – #Palmolive25Ways #cbias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.  

#Palmolive25Ways and #CollectiveBias

 

10 Unusual Dish Soap Uses

I’m someone who prefers to do things the easy way.  Generally, I don’t like to have different cleaners on hand for each individual thing I need to clean in my house.  Not only does that promote clutter, it costs more money, too.  Because I like to use what I have laying around the house, I thought I’d tell you about a few different dish soap uses that you can use your Palmolive Dish Soap for!  Some of them are a bit unusual, but that’s what makes them more fun!

 

1.  Carpet Cleaner – The other morning, I woke up to a big puke stain on the carpet that my dog had left me.  I pulled out my Palmolive dish soap and squirted it on the stain. Then, I used a scrub brush to dig it deep into the carpet fibers.  I rinsed with a little water and a towel and suddenly, my stain had disappeared.  Saved by the Palmolive!

Clean your carpet stains with Palmolive dish soap

 

2.  Ant Repellant – Yes, Ant Repellant.  We have had a horrible problem with ants this year in our kitchen.  Actually, it’s every year, but this year, they seem to be a bit worse than most.  I mixed up a bottle of Palmolive dish soap and water and I spray it on those ants.  Since we’ve been doing this, the ants are getting fewer and fewer and we’ve noticed an unexpected benefit.  The kitchen smells fresh and clean!  That was a pleasant benefit!

Using Palmolive to Kill Ants

 

3.  Laundry Stain Remover – Yesterday, after church, we decided to take the kids to the newly built fast food Mexican restaurant for lunch.  That way we wouldn’t dirty any dishes AND all the hunger pangs could go away quicker.  The smaller girls were dressed up in their fancy dresses.  Of course, 2 bites in, they had dropped burritos onto their pretty dresses.  They were distraught, worrying that we wouldn’t be able to get the stain out.  The first thing I did when we got home was pull out the Palmolive and treated those stains.  It came out so fast!  We were all relieved!

Stain on Dress to be Treated with Palmolive Dish Soap

Palmolive Dish Soap for Treating Stains

More Uses for Dish Soap

4.  Flea Killer - Did you know you can wash your pets with Palmolive dish soap?  It is much less expensive than your leading flea shampoos and doesn’t harm your pets at all!

5. Fix a Hole in Inflatables - If you pour soapy water around where a leak should be, you can find that hard to spot leak in your tire or other inflatable device.  The leak will cause the water to bubble up (thanks to the Palmolive dish soap) and suddenly you know right where your hole is.

6.  Bug Deterrent – I keep mentioning bugs.  Really, Palmolive works well against all kinds of bugs, not just fleas and ants.  If you have a problem with bugs inside or out, spray around the foundation of the house and/or the inside at the baseboards with a Palmolive and water mixture.  It will work on roaches, bees, wasps, moths, spiders and more.  It’s so much safer than the smelly chemicals used in over the counter pest control products.

7.  Laundry Freshener - It’s time to freshen up your linens or even your mattress, spray your mixture of Palmolive and water onto anything you want to leave with a good smell.

8.  Clean Grease from hands - My husband is notorious for coming into the house with greasy hands after working on the tractor, mower or car and needing something to cut the grease right away.  We stopped buying the hand grease removers because they just didn’t seem worth it.  Instead, we use our dish soap.  It works great and smells better than the other stuff!

9.  Remove Excess Hair Color - This one I have not yet tried, because I never color my hair, but…..I’ve heard that if you color your hair too dark, you can lighten it up almost immediately if you quickly wash it in Palmolive dish soap.  It wouldn’t hurt to give it a shot!

10.  Make Bubbles - Kids love playing with bubbles!  Making them can be so much fun!  It’s easy, too!  Just mix together:

Palmolive dish soap – 1 part
Distilled Water – 15 parts
Glycerine or White Karo Syrup – 1/4 part

If you let them sit overnight, they become a bit more sticky, but other than that, you’re good to go!

 

We bought our Palmolive in the cleaning supplies aisle at Walmart!

10 Unusual Dish Soap Uses

Get Entered into the Palmolive Sweepstakes!

Starting today, Palmolive is hosting a Sweepstakes where you can enter to win a $2,000 Walmart gift card and weekly prizes.  I know I’d love an extra $2000 to spend!  Get entered into the Sweepstakes here!

 


Weekly Challenge: Pick 3 Problem Areas & Tackle Them

You know I’m a procrastinator, right?  Throw a baby into my mix and suddenly I’m an ultra extreme procrastinator!  I have to have my teens help me keep up.  Either they’re watching the kids for me or they’re helping me clean.  It’s OK though, it doesn’t hurt them to work (and I let them get out plenty, believe me!).   But, I do get sick of seeing my messes, even though I’m not all that observant.  The laundry gets out of control super quick!

 

Pick 3 Problem Areas

Now that baby is almost 4 months old, she’s starting to get a little bit easier, so I should be able to get more things done.  Thus, the reason I’m back to this tactic of using my website to motivate myself.

My house explodes on a regular basis.  Seriously!  It’ll look like a tornado went through it, but then we spend 30 minutes picking up and all of a sudden things are a whole lot more tolerable.  But still, my messes are still around.  Just in piles.  In corners of the rooms.  At the end of the table.  On the fireplace benches.

I’ve decided to start tackling my piles.  You know the ones.  The ones I don’t really notice.  They’re normally there, so they feel normal to me.  ;)  I’m actually going to show you a few of mine…….because next week, I’m going to show you that they’re gone.

I’m using this tactic to:

1) motivate myself

and

2) to motivate you!

Laundry

laundry pile

#1 on my list is the laundry in my living room.  We use one of our couches to stack the clean laundry.  When we’re about to fold, it gets knocked onto the floor.  This is a constant problem area for us, because we always have laundry coming in and out.  I often don’t really notice the laundry explosion because it’s something we’re always working on.  This week, my goal is to have that pile there as little as possible.

The Pile at the End of my Table

The Mess on My Table

We have 2 tables we can eat at in our house.  This one serves as a school table, lunch table, printer holder and whatever else I decide.  One day, I was tired of going through things and I just piled it all at the end of the table.  Can you believe someone would do this?  :D  It’s been sitting there ever since, getting messier and messier.  I’ve been ignoring it.

The Piles on my Fireplace Bench

Weekly Challenge

I was given a cute diaper cake for a baby gift and it exploded and has been sitting there like this.  Plus, I’ve got a box of books I need to go through to see if I can sell any of them on Amazon.  Sitting they are.  Why oh why do I procrastinate so?

Your messes may not be the same as mine, but I have a feeling that there’s some part of your life that you’d like to have a little more order in.  Use these weekly posts to motivate yourself!  Show me or tell me what you’re getting done by leaving a comment or sharing on Facebook.

You may notice that I’ve chosen some pretty easy things to get done (or at least they may seem easy to you, lol), but…I’m trying to keep it doable, in this busy baby world that I live in.  We’ll see if I can manage these 3 tasks.

What’s on your list?  What 3 things will you tackle this week?