1 hour ago
Wednesday, February 10
Remember blueing? I used it, mainly for my whites, and for my hair. I'd make a "rinse" of it for my hair, and apply it at the end of every wash, turning my hair ashen.
One of my most-valued beauty secrets is to apply a blueing rinse after shampooing and conditioning, and then rinse it out (your final rinse) with the coldest water you can stand. Don't get the water down onto your scalp - keep it on the hair, as much as you can.
(If your hair has desirable red or gold tones, skip the blueing, but not the cold-water rinse. My hair had a bad tendency to be brassy because I was prematurely gray.)
Your hair will shine like glass.
The more mundane use of blueing (or bluing, as it's also spelled) was to optically remove yellow tones from cloth. In the olden days, laundry seemed a greater task. And it was a greater task, and a lengthy one. Wringers, washboards, washtubs, grating bars of detergent, line drying, and ironing were all part of it. So were drying racks inside, and large square outdoor drying trees. I walked around with clothespins in my mouth, and I can recall the woody taste.
Once dried or nearly dry, there was the ironing. I remember the little water sprinkler shaped like a Dutch doll (wish I had it still) and then the introduction of the spray bottle.
I started ironing at age five. At age two, I had pulled up a chair and drank a cup of bleach that my mother always kept at the end of the ironing board, and nearly died, but it didn't dissuade me from ironing later, again standing on a chair.
I began with towels (ironing the binding, mainly, so that it would not curl), plain handkerchiefs, and plain pillowcases. Later I could handle starch, and larger and embroidered linens, and by age ten, I could iron anything, including my father's shirts and my sisters' fancy outfits, including skirts with knife-edge pleats. It was an art and a science. Care had to be taken not to put a shine onto a fabric, iron in a hard wrinkle, or worst of all, scorch something. Things like that mattered.
And there was lots of folding, too. Seems there was more to fold, back then. My mother had a special way to fold towels, in thirds, with the last fold tucked into another fold. When I returned home after my mother died, I was shocked to find towels folded in an easier way. There they were, just sitting on the shelf! I just stared. I don't even know when she switched over to that "new" way. I myself roll towels and washcloths, and I can't remember when I started that, either.
I don't know anyone who irons or folds much now. Interestingly, the recent immigrants into our area do a lot of ironing, just as I did decades ago. They even iron their jeans, and even the jeans of their kindergartners.
I think the printable below would be cute to print and string up over your laundry area. The letters spell out "Wash & Dry."