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The answer to lost socks! Finally, I am no longer hunting for, sorting through, and matching up socks for my family of five! I just bought inexpensive, mesh lingerie bags that can be found at places like Target or Walmart. I placed one on a hook in the closet for each of my 3 daughters. My kids tend to tear off their shoes and socks when they walk in the door, so I put theirs in a closet there, but you could also hang them in the bedroom or laundry room.
They simply throw their socks in the mesh bags when they come home. On laundry day, I ask everyone to get their sock bags and throw them into the washing machine, making sure they are all zipped up. I then wash them and throw them into the dryer as is. When they're dry, the kids take their own bag and sort their socks themselves. Little ones especially enjoy doing this, but sometimes I admit, if we're pressed for time we don't sort them at all. We know they're all there.
They then put the sorted (or unsorted) socks back into their bags and take upstairs to dump out into their sock drawer. No missing socks! No sorting! One less things for me to do! The bags are then hung up in their usual places, waiting for the next day's socks. So easy!
By Anita from San Diego, CA
I bought the net type washing bags for lingerie and delicate things. Each person in the family has a sock bag. The dirty socks are put in each person's bag, then I wash them and dry them in the bag.
When my husband buys new socks, he marks each one "L" for left foot and "R" for right foot with a permanant marker. Then he takes a safety pin and pins the socks together when he takes them off. I throw them in the washer and dryer. No more hunting for the left and right sock to match up and no more lost socks. Just goes to show that men can be clever!
By brenda from IL
I do a lot of laundry. When I discover the unmatched socks, they go into a small basket nearby. The next time I run the white load through (or the color load for colored socks), I add the mismatched socks to it. Usually the mate will be found this way, and it isn't another chore of going through a large amount of unmatched socks.
By Jennifer Brooks from Fresno, CA
I think it's safe to bet that we've all lost a sock or two before in our lifetime. We come home from a hard day, rip off those socks, and toss them in the hamper, where they get mixed with all the other dirty clothes. And somewhere between the wash cycle and the dryer, socks magically disappear!
Cut a piece of 3/4 inch PVC pipe to make a ring approximately 1/8 inch thick. Sand the rough edges and you're good to go.
Give each family member their own mesh bag for them to keep in their rooms to place their dirty socks in. They go in the washer and dryer in the mesh bag. After laundering, each bag goes into their stack of clean clothes.
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Tips to help keep socks together.
Another way not to have lost socks. Teach everyone in the house that when they take off their socks, flip one of the edges over the other sock to keep them together
I have found the best way to keep socks together is to find a brand you like and buy 10 or 15 pairs that are all the same color, etc. You never worry about 'matching' just stick two together.
To reduce lost socks I managed to convince my husband to do what I have done for years - safety pin the socks together at the toes before putting in the hamper. I started doing it when I was young to keep from getting my sisters socks, now it prevents lost socks!
Prevent losing odd socks in the laundry and help in sorting them: With five kids, it was easy to lose socks, I finally bought small safety pins. I would pin the pairs of socks at the toes before washing, that way no sorting afterwards. Can roll up socks with pin still in. When worn, pin can be put inside near the top so it is not seen. Hopefully, the kids (and husbands) will learn to pin them together when they take them off, to save you the trouble of doing this.
What I do is very simple. I take put my socks on a big safety pin. I can pin 5 pairs together. Then they stay together in the washer and dryer. For mens socks you can get a bigger safety. I have kept my socks together for years by doing this.
I have white socks for the most part and I buy them in packs of 12. I use 4 colored markers to put dots or Roman numerals on the bottom of each pair. 3 with red, 3 with blue, etc. Then I separate them after the wash. You can use whatever color shows up best on any socks.
Everyone in our house has their own hamper - the freestanding "pop-up" type. I clothespinned a mesh lingere washing bag to everyone's hamper and trained them to put socks and tights in there. No more single socks!
If for some reason we do find single socks lying around they go directly into the hamper. When I pull one out of the dryer I then know to put it in the "single sock" basket to await it's mate. Every few months I throw out any unmated socks.
When hanging socks I hang them together, however, there are times when a single sock surfaces for these times I have an odd sock drawer in the loungeroom near where I fold the clothes. Anytime I come across a sock on its lonesome I just put it into the drawer. Every now and then I pull out the drawer and pair them up.
My son and husband have no problem putting their clothes in the hamper, except for their socks. So I have a plastic bag with handle that you get from the store hanging on the inside bedroom doorknob and they put their socks in it and I gather them up on wash day. I tried the saftey pin idea and they wouldnt do it and also clothespin but alas, no.
After losing too many socks to the 'sock monster' in our home, I now buy one colour of socks in the same size for all four of my children. They are 9 (boy), 7 (girl), 6 (girl) and 4 (girl); since being so close in age their feet are not drastically different in size (the boy's socks are shorter on the leg and the younger girls' socks are higher on the leg but they all prefer it that way).
In the winter (we live in Ontario, Canada) the kids wear black socks. It's not necessarily fashionable but it is practical. Dirt does not stain the socks, no more 'unmated' socks and since they are all the same size, matching is simple. In the summer the girls' like to wear pink socks and so the same goes as for the black socks.
Each Spring and Fall I go sock shopping since by the end of the season the socks are becoming worn through or stretched out. Whenever a sock is worn, I can throw it out without having 'single' socks. The 'good' sock pairs I keep as extras for those weeks when laundry is not being done as quickly as it should.
Now I need to convince my husband to not keep worn out, holey and stretched socks for 'just in case'. I am learning to inspect each sock as it comes through the wash or we end up with many socks that are unwearable.
Post your ideas below.
Here is an idea for keeping your socks together and a fast way to match them. When you take your socks off each night safety pin the pair together at the toe. Then when you go to wash and dry them they will still be together, you will never loose another sock again! It's great and you never have a basket of socks that needs to be matched, it saves so much time.
To keep my socks together I use the safety pin method. I buy the large safety pins and immediately when I take my socks off I pin them together and put them in the hamper. That way I always have a pair of socks...not just one. Of course, I can't get my husband or daughter to do that and because they won't, they have to sort their own socks. (06/16/2006)
An easyway to keep socks together is to use a product called sock-locks.They are plastic rings about one and a half inches in diameter that you slip both socks through and it holds them together during washing and drying.They are hard to find but they really do the trick. (09/08/2007)
I have another great idea for socks that I read about years ago in a womans magazine.
It's so simple! Just buy the same sock style and color in the amount you need. For example, now I buy my husband around two weeks worth of black socks in the same style!
Magic - no more hunting for matching socks! Also, when I buy a replacement batch, I just throw out all of the other socks since they all wear out at the same time.
Genius is so simple, isn't it?! (09/08/2007)
I have another good idea for keeping track of socks.
I use a mesh laundry bag, like the kind used for lingerie, and put all of my dirty socks in the bag. No missing socks at the end of the wash cycle!
Just get a large enough bag. I buy my bags at Walmart or Target types of stores, but I've even found them at large drug stores, like Walgreens.
Pretty cool! :)