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Ok but how did the Edwardians WASH these dresses?

  • Dipublikasikan tanggal 12 Agu 2022
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    [1] A Competent Committee of Home-makers and Physicians, ed. Home and Health; a Household Manual Containing Two Thousand Recipes and Helpful Suggestions on the Building and Care of the Home in Harmony with Sanitory Laws. Internet Archive. Mountain View, CA, Portland, OR.: Pacific Press Publishing Co., 1907. archive.org/details/homehealt... .
    [2] (This image seems to have first appeared online in a Blogspot post, so take it with a pinch of salt.) British Closed Range. Online Image. Victorian Interiors and More. Accessed August 12, 2022. victoriandecorating.blogspot.c... . (NOTE: There is a second image mistakenly labelled [2] beginning at 04:28 which is cited below [4].)
    [3] Click Americana. How People Used Vintage Washboards, Wringers & Other Old-Fashioned Laundry Equipment Years Ago. November 11, 2020. Online image. Click Americana. clickamericana.com/topics/hom... .
    [4] Home Washing Machine & Wringer. 1869. Lithograph Print. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. Library of Congress. www.loc.gov/resource/pga.03845/ .
    [2 (second appearance)] Bailey Wringing Machine Co. c. 1870-1900. Miami University Libraries - Digital Collections. www.flickr.com/photos/muohio_... .
    [5] Bushnell, Joseph P. What to Do and How to Do It; a Home Manual, Treating of the Home and Its Interests, the Culinary Art, Health and Its Requirements, the Farm and Its Activities, Things Worth Remembering, Miscellaneous Information, Etc., Etc., Etc. Internet Archive. Chicago, Ill.: Home manual publishing co., 1909. archive.org/details/whattodoh... .
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Komentar • 5 899

  • Spiral Python
    Spiral Python Bulan Yang lalu +7395

    I found myself actually talking back to you, Bernadette, in my Grandmother’s voice… My Grandmother was a part of Australia’s Stolen Generations; an Aboriginal child whose skin was lighter coloured. She was placed as a housemaid in a European household as a young child (6 years old). She grew up with very strong opinions about “washing day”; including which dress to wear on washing day (the oldest one made of the most worn out fabric). She died in 1979, but not before I could be taught the ‘proper way’ to launder. And I still make my own laundry detergents from her recipes; grate a stick of pure soap into boiling water, remove from the heat and gently combine 2 cups of washing soda and a little essential oil of a desired fragrance (according to her, lavender for haberdashery, eucalyptus or ti-tree for ‘mens shirts’, sage for ‘ladies cloths’ and rosewater or orange water for summer dresses) I still use a few drops of the oils, but only as a final rinse. Stain removal and washing was not done properly just by soaking the garment in water/ chemicals. It needed to be agitated, by hand if item was especially delicate, but stained hems and underarms would be (gently) rubbed against a washing board with liberal applications of the chosen stain remover, and well rinsed before the next step.
    And yes! Never Ever boil one’s delicates! My Grandmother always believed the mangle was in fact better than a washing machine. It’s actually pretty easy to hand wash most clothes and linens, but getting them dry could be much more problematic. Items would be flattened out, and put through the mangle to remove excess water. Delicates or items being starched were always placed flat between white towels or linens, mangled, and then pressed, initially with only a warm iron to remove creases. If the item seemed to be drying too quickly one should gently sprinkle clear water on the area, and keep ironing.
    Delicate items not requiring starching would be dried by laying item flat over a raised rack. All other items would be dried by hanging over a shaded rack and then placed in the late afternoon sun for a final airing…
    Blueing the load only required a very small amount of blueing medium, well dissolved in the rinse water. (Although at boarding school in the 80s, we used to regularly pour heaps of liquid blue in with our white school shirts, dresses and socks to make them go pale blue… because… boarding school?) (And home made laundry soap only needs a small amount, can be used in washing machine or handwashing, and is excellent for people who have sensitive skin… and leaves no residue.)
    Happy washing day!

    • Karen Gerber
      Karen Gerber 2 hari yang lalu

      WOW! Thank you for sharing Grandmother's lessons.

    • Susanna Bonke
      Susanna Bonke 3 hari yang lalu

      @Barbara T I also escaped to the ironing place for some time on my own. A special peace comes from a well organized household.

    • Susanna Bonke
      Susanna Bonke 3 hari yang lalu

      @Leilehua Yuen the helping women did hard work. Respect and Love.

    • Kathy Bramley
      Kathy Bramley 3 hari yang lalu +1

      My little brother's (mass produced) teddy was never quite the same after a trip through the power wringer, but it was loved for it still. Early 80s twin tubs with a washer and a power wringer.

    • Kathy Bramley
      Kathy Bramley 3 hari yang lalu

      Many of my relatives worked in service, some in the mine, some bus drivers, and textile workers second cousin once removed was born out of wedlock in the 50s but went on to become a civil engineer and polar explorer. Anyway that is to draw a line of connection - whilst of course the racial abuse & colonialism factor is very different aspect compared to poverty and inequality inside of our own systems, and it didn't need to happen. But I wish politically there could be more antiracist solidarity around the world because it was always cruel, kids being forced into service. The poverty and inequality and patronising monstrosity too. That said, I sometimes wonder if going into a job in domestic services or hospitality for a brief period at least might help with my executive function skills and housekeeping but I'd want my husband and maybe my young adult children (boy and a girl) to do it too. It's certainly underestimated and undervalued skilled labour due to sexism. It gets to the point of dysphoria with me, I'm not sure where the autism ends and then sexism (with ableism) starts and then the trans nonbinary begins. I hate gender inequality. And all bigotry. But they conflict many ways cos everyone has traditions. Unless you were torn from your culture. Or it was crushed in the making of Christendom whiteness and exploitation. Some new ones can form, old ones rediscovered in time but it's still not the same.

  • Phantom Hornet
    Phantom Hornet 23 hari yang lalu +753

    So, I’m a guy in my twenties, mainly interested in games and memes, as far as my IDclips catalogue goes, and somehow, for whatever unclear reason, the algorithm recommends me a video about washing vintage dresses. And you know what, I actually watched it all the way through, enjoyed it, and went ahead to check out other videos on the channel. Sometimes the threads of fate seem to weave in all the strangest ways and patterns, but I’m certainly glad this thread lead me here, and now I’m discovering a new interest for myself. So yeah, thank you for the work you do!

    • Tineke Williams
      Tineke Williams 9 jam yang lalu

      Good thing you could not see the ladies hands, raw in winter!

    • yesifish
      yesifish 4 hari yang lalu +3

      Some of the men replying to this are so weird-

    • D.U.N.E
      D.U.N.E 4 hari yang lalu +2

      "the lack of sexualized looks" Pretty sure that's the opposite as seeing something as a sexual object.
      Last I checked women get to like sexualized depictions of men (Fabio in his prime springs to mind), which is no issue. The same applies in the opposite direction.
      There is a difference between liking a sexual depictions in media, to feeling as if all people of a group should be sexual objects.

    • pike666db
      pike666db 4 hari yang lalu +1

      @Nick it is a preference. that's why sleeping around exists and both male and female practice it. welcome to the world. also, I believe you might be misinterpreting both D.U.N.E. and Joao. the way I understood what Joao said is that there is a tendency amongst female content creators to "show skin" both in their thumbnails and videos that seems bait-y to attract clicks and views when the quality of the content is subpar. don't even get me started on what twitch has become.

    • Nick
      Nick 4 hari yang lalu +2

      @D.U.N.E seeing women as sexual objects is an preference???? Hell no it's disgusting!

  • seriously? really?
    seriously? really? 13 hari yang lalu +49

    Bernadette, generally, you have to thoroughly mix all of your additives to any water BEFORE you add your garment to let it soak. (Just like you did with the bluing.) If you sprinkle it on top of your wash water with the garment already in it, you can damage the garment...This is so you can thoroughly mix the solution and not risk having concentrated spots of the additive land on the fabric when you have a limited amount of water in the cauldron.

  • Chelsy Ellsworth
    Chelsy Ellsworth Bulan Yang lalu +88

    My great aunt was trying to get a stain out of something and used gasoline to do it. There was a short in her water heater, I believe, and it all caught fire. She was burned across 80% of her body and passed away a few weeks later after spending time in the burn unit at the hospital. She was only 20 and was engaged to be married. It was her fiancé’s clothes that she was washing. It’s incredibly dangerous and I can only imagine how many people died horrible deaths doing this. Thank you for being safe!

    • Oakleaf700
      Oakleaf700 5 hari yang lalu +2

      @Chelsy Ellsworth What a Remarkable Great Aunt.
      You are indeed honoured to have her Spirit around you, and DNA in you, too.
      My mum knew a Nursing sister at the specialist Burns Unit at Roehampton in west London.
      Even in the 1980's/1990's burns take a lot of nursing care, and the risk of infection is very high.
      Fluid loss as well.
      Despite the best care, people with severe burns can and do die.
      It's said a burn or scald bigger than a 50p {UK} needs attention from a doctor.{Infection risk}
      Bless Your Great Aunt Libby and your Family.

    • Oakleaf700
      Oakleaf700 5 hari yang lalu +2

      That's horrendous.
      I remember a family friend in France getting badly burned from using some form of spirit stove..Her legs were burned.
      Thankfully she survived the burns.
      So sorry for the loss of your Great Aunt.

    • createone100
      createone100 7 hari yang lalu +4

      How horrible and sad! 🙁

    • Chelsy Ellsworth
      Chelsy Ellsworth 7 hari yang lalu +15

      @Cynthia Crawford I wish I could have known her. According to my grandmother, they were out running errands and she pointed to a cemetery and said “I’d like to be buried there.” My grandma told her that was Macabre and not to talk like that. My aunt said “Death is just the next adventure. I’m not afraid of death.” I think she knew she was not going to live to be an old age and she made peace with that fact. She told my family not to worry and that she would see them again and passed away so peacefully for a person who was as severely burned as she was. She was beauty and Grace incarnate. I’m lucky that some of the same blood flows through my veins. She is a treasure. 💕 her fiancé got permission to marry her posthumously from their church, (In their faith, marriage continues beyond death) which absolutely crushed me when I learned of it. He still can’t talk of her without his eyes welling with tears. He’s stayed in touch with the family and was very close with my grandfather. (My great aunt’s brother.) thank you for letting me tell her story. Her name was Libby and I have such a special place in my heart for her.

    • Cynthia Crawford
      Cynthia Crawford 7 hari yang lalu +15

      20 is such a sad young age to die over washing your true loves clothes :(

  • Alexandra Smith
    Alexandra Smith 24 hari yang lalu +46

    I am in my mid-50's and was raised by my Grandmother who had been a high end tailoress (and a 1920's flapper). Wash Day would mean warning my Grandfather who would pull out the big iron roller and wash off the laundry rack just before he went to bed. The day before, we would make not only that day's dinner but also a big meat pie and a large jug of gravy for dinner on Laundry Day. My Grandmother did laundry the way she had been taught by her Grandmother was the Senior Housekeeper at a large house .... Think Mrs Hughes and Downton Abbey. Very confused by some of your laundry instructions. Anyway, our laundry day meant collecting the whites together from lingerie through to men's collars. Our tools were two scrubbing brushes of varying softness, a rubbing rack (washing board), a big iron roller for squeezing out excess water, three iron buckets and two big washing tubs. You also had bleach, large block of caustic soap, small block of soft soap, soda crystals, a blue cube, and starch. We started at 0630am and usually finished around 0830pm - we got two cuppa breaks of the minutes but didn't eat until dinner.

    • Alexandra Smith
      Alexandra Smith 24 hari yang lalu +8

      And you are right about outer layers. A big woollen cardigan would get washed three times at most in a season. And this is also why men's shirts had removable collars which could be changed every day and hard scrubbed (remember it was normal to bathe once a week!).

  • Vtor Hunter
    Vtor Hunter Bulan Yang lalu +8943

    I often like to stop and think about how thankful I am to have a washing machine, a refidgerator, and clean water delivered directly into my house via tap. Those things make life so much easier.

    • Renee KH
      Renee KH 3 hari yang lalu

      YESSSSS !!!!!

    • Glier Nemeloc
      Glier Nemeloc 7 hari yang lalu

      @Alena16 20 dental care is underrated nowadays, but even in movies you could see how characters were aware of the teeth of others, even of those recently killed

    • Stomp the Dragon
      Stomp the Dragon 9 hari yang lalu

      In the past there were many times I had to do laundry for 5 in the bathtub, then lug them out to line- hang. It was absolutely no fun, especially in the winter.

    • BinaThere
      BinaThere 10 hari yang lalu +1

      @La Joyous yes much fresher looking. I often look at the sad pile of freshly dryer dried clothes of my daughter's and notice how sad and limp they look. You can't beat freshly sun dried laundry.

    • Atheina Sophia Jade
      Atheina Sophia Jade 12 hari yang lalu

      I always tell my appliances thank you after their chore, or when interacting with them.

  • Lynn•°○
    Lynn•°○ Bulan Yang lalu +281

    The funny thing is, my family actually did live without electricity or running water for around eight years of my childhood. Therefore, we regularly used an old fashioned ringer and washer.
    It was exhausting, I'll tell you that. I don't know how anyone thought the women who did this weekly were weak.

    • Albin Lindh
      Albin Lindh 21 jam yang lalu +2

      To get political, I have a therory that woman "left" the household because the house work got easier and easier due to modern machinery to a point were it no longer was respected. So they just ran out of things to do.

    • Bree Badger
      Bree Badger 11 hari yang lalu +9

      We had an electric ringer washing machine when I was a toddler. Then my arm got caught in it one day and Grandpa ordered Dad to buy Mom an proper washer and dryer. My arm's fine BTW, but I do have a rather impressive scar on my left elbow and somewhat limited range of motion. I could get that part fixed with plastic surgery, but... it's never seemed worth the effort and certainly not worth the money - and talking insurance into paying for it would be a _ton_ of effort and not guaranteed to work.

    • Anna Kotyk
      Anna Kotyk 18 hari yang lalu +5

      lol handwashed all my clothes until bachelors ) we had like 2 machines per dorm, handwashing was faster

    • Google made me do it
      Google made me do it 19 hari yang lalu +31

      It's why men used to fear their wives. They had muscle, and if they left, they were left with an awful lot of work.

  • Eleana Stclare
    Eleana Stclare Bulan Yang lalu +374

    For the record, back in the day, for stains that don’t come out, the bar soap was taken and directly rubbed onto the stained part. Scrubbed together until the stain came out, and rinsed. Works well. When my kids were growing up, we didn’t have much. I did laundry in my bathtub three times a week for four people. Jeans and heavy towels and bedding included. I did this for almost three years.
    I don’t rec. it! I ruined my knees, my back, and my hands. But my husband and children and self, had clean clothes!
    Scrubbing must be a regular part of doing laundry by hand. It is the only way stains or dirt come out properly.
    Ironing gets faster the more you do it.
    I can do that dress in fifteen minutes. You can as well after you have done it over and over.
    Point being. We do what we have to do!
    Whether it be scrubbing on your knees over a tub, or ironing on the floor on a towel because of no board.
    Also, when you wrap the wet clothing in a towel,or cloth, step on the towel! It dries the clothing so much faster! Gets all the water out, and readies them for a line dry in the fresh air.
    Good luck!

    • Susanna Bonke
      Susanna Bonke 3 hari yang lalu

      @just me! true. The fabric is a joke these days. In the 70s, it was different.

    • Susanna Bonke
      Susanna Bonke 3 hari yang lalu

      That's what we still do as pre-machine treatment. Works well

    • Leah Pope
      Leah Pope 10 hari yang lalu +1

      Yep, they would scrub the devil out of it by hand. 🖐

    • iJ Sabelle
      iJ Sabelle 11 hari yang lalu +2

      I am from the Philippines and yes I did handwashing and scrubbing was always part of the process and we beat the jeans and heavy clothing with a small thing that looks like a hazing paddle. My wrist were raw, my back hurt, but that was part of life. I am grateful for the conveniences nowadays, but I still do it when I go home to the Philippines.

    • just me!
      just me! 11 hari yang lalu +1

      @YT4Me57 You make a very good point. - I'll have to struggle on though! I'm allergic to harsh cleaning products. Thanks for pointing out the obvious 😉

  • diamondflaw
    diamondflaw 18 hari yang lalu +7

    It’s probably negligible, but just so you know if your pot is aluminum, the washing soda can react with it. If it does, you’ll see small bubbles that are hydrogen gas.

  • kidzoom221
    kidzoom221 17 hari yang lalu +89

    My high school history teacher always pressed into us that the single most important invention for the advancement of feminism and women's liberation was the washing machine. If you had to care for a large household's laundry and cooking alone, then multiple days out of your week had to be planned around washing, and at least one had to be entirely devoted to it. With the advent of the laundry machine, women suddenly had far more free time in a week, and were less exhausted overall. Not only did this enable them to enter the workforce, it also enabled them to meet, organize, and protest for their rights. Watching this video really makes that argument feel more tangible, more easily understood. Thank you for your work! Especially with scoliosis, your back must have been KILLING you!

    • nicole pettit
      nicole pettit Hari Yang lalu +1

      Makes sense. I would guess that somewhere along the way, running water/plumbing helped as well. Getting water takes up a LOT of time for women and girls in some parts of the world.

    • Flying Nutrition
      Flying Nutrition 5 hari yang lalu +1

      @gail101242 they done other jobs ... laundry woman could do any other job ...as that was already one of the hardest jobs possible... and the transition was very slow ... and by the way the job paid just so they do not starve and die young due to the hard work and chemicals... washing machine saved them ... as now they could do other jobs ... you see the rich once they did not have a use for them as washing machine find them other uses ... that is how society works ... rich keep people down to have them for their own benefit ... like today ... no difference .... just for some woman life now is better ...

    • gail101242
      gail101242 8 hari yang lalu +1

      absolutely, of course, but, like all machines before and continuing, some people lost the only work that they were able to do. No benefits, so presumably starvation? No I am not a luddite - simply feel that we have had enough experience to realise that mechanisation has a cost that should be planned for and met.

    • Waldemar
      Waldemar 8 hari yang lalu +1

      I wonder who invented the washing machine?

  • ghorensma
    ghorensma Bulan Yang lalu +3948

    Can we just take a moment to aknowledge Bernadette's courage to go and EXPERIMENT WITH A GARMENT THAT TOOK MONTHS TO CREATE!
    Girl, if we ever have to send someone into Mordor, it will be you!

    • Daniel Montgomery
      Daniel Montgomery 14 hari yang lalu +1

      Until this day, I never understood the human cost of frolicking!

    • Side by Side
      Side by Side 22 hari yang lalu

      True! I was terrified for her!

    • calliegal235
      calliegal235 26 hari yang lalu +1

      I have cleaned several wedding dresses, usually polyester, in a bathtub. They weigh a ton. I put a fabric laundry cart into the tub and draped the dress over it to let most of the water run out if it. Then I set open umbrellas on my large bed, under a ceiling fan and draped the large skirts over the umbrellas. I took photos of the gown which were not back lit, (like some which I took a chance on and bought) and sold some of these dresses on ebay at a little profit. It was interesting, but heavily time consuming.

    • calliegal235
      calliegal235 26 hari yang lalu +2

      I freaked out over the warm water on a mud stain.

    • calliegal235
      calliegal235 26 hari yang lalu

      I will not go with her. There is no way I would do a cleaning experiment on a dress that beautiful! I would take a scrap of the same fabric and drag it through the mud and use that scrap for a cleaning experiment. Absolutely I won't use ammonia; too harsh on the lungs.

  • Stonedust and Stardust
    Stonedust and Stardust Bulan Yang lalu +462

    Since the mud stains were only on the bottom of the dress. I would have hung the dress over the side of the tub to the water , and scrubbed the dirt off. This would prevent the mud and dirt from coming into contact with the rest of the dress. After the mud was removed it would be safe to put the entire dress in.

    • Abi Gail
      Abi Gail 8 hari yang lalu +1

      @Rara Avis I visited a German castle recently, and it was remarked that the queen would wear silk dresses for one season, which not be washed. After the season, the dresses would be gifted to her ladies-in-waiting, and were considered prized gifts. (This was in the 18th century, so before the Edwardian period).

    • BlackSeranna
      BlackSeranna 8 hari yang lalu +1

      @D H so clever!

    • D H
      D H 8 hari yang lalu +3

      Not a bad idea, but as some others have pointed out: stains wicking up into the hem can be a problem. Easily prevented though, by wetting the cleanest part of the garment first and pulling the rest of the dress through the water to the hem. Then when you hang the dress (though obviously not over the side of the tub unless you want your feet in a puddle), the excess water dripping out of the hem actually helps move the stain down and out as you spot treat.

    • BlackSeranna
      BlackSeranna 8 hari yang lalu

      @Ashkan / アシュカン I have tried that - the trouble is that water will travel into fibers even if there is a tourniquet. You can see the exact line between the fabric you are trying to spot wash and where the water line stops. You could try it sometime on some silk or cotton and see what I am talking about - especially if the spot you are trying to wash has a bad spot of soil or stain on it.

    • Tracy Thomas
      Tracy Thomas 8 hari yang lalu +2

      You let the mud dry and brush the worst of it off. I do it on my dogs coats before washing

  • Anna Romero García
    Anna Romero García 20 hari yang lalu +39

    About the blueing, many modern detergents have either blue particles in them (if they are powder detergents) or have some kind of blue dye (the liquid ones). It's supposed to have the same whitening effect on white garments and also it helps to visually restore dark colors: blue makes black garments that are turning brownish or greyish look more black. So it's not an outdated concept, most people don't realize that this step is a part of their everyday modern laundry routine.

    • Cole B.
      Cole B. 2 hari yang lalu +1

      @Tracy Thomas As they say “I’m blue, daba dee, daba die.”

    • Tracy Thomas
      Tracy Thomas 8 hari yang lalu +5

      I live near the factory that produced Reckitts "Blue", which was manufactured from 1850. I know people who remember the women leaving the factory literally blue from handling the stuff, so goodness knows what it did to their lungs.

  • XantiaD
    XantiaD 25 hari yang lalu +68

    When you soak a garment, you should mix whatever detergent/additive/chemical you're using into the water before you add fabric. Some chemicals are very aggressive and can eat your fabric away (think what might have happened if you'd poured bleach onto the wet dress instead of the acid you used.
    Just a word to the wise. :)

    • Langy D
      Langy D 5 hari yang lalu

      In gone with the wind they dry brushed a muddy hem

    • loopbraider
      loopbraider 8 hari yang lalu +5

      Yup, that was shocking - both the acid and the ammonia, also the bluing - I couldn't believe it when she poured those all straight onto the fabric in the water! Keep the dress out when you add any of those into the water, stir it in to distribute it evenly throughout the water and only then plop the dress into the water! And grate or shave the bar soap before trying to dissolve and boil it. Also, gentle agitation is important for removing soil/ mud. Just sitting in water isn't going to get soil out, no matter what chemicals are in the water. The soil has to physically come out, it won't 'dissolve' away. That is going to require agitation or rubbing along with water and soap. Agitation better than rubbing for delicate fabrics. If she does enough lifting the dress in and out of the water, that MIGHT give enough agitation to remove the mud, but I have handwashed a lot of muddy pants and they required a lot of soap and agitation/ rubbing.

    • sister kerry
      sister kerry 20 hari yang lalu +12

      I know! I was shrieking, "Bernadette, don't pour acidic substances directly on the dress, dissolve it in the water first and then place in the portion to be soaked".

  • Jessie Reed
    Jessie Reed Bulan Yang lalu +247

    Blueing still exists in modern laundry! Most people just don't have to think about it. This principle is why most liquid laundry soaps (like Tide) are blue. Comes from the same philosophy. As several other people have mentioned, a little blue goes a long way.

    • John DoDo Doe
      John DoDo Doe 8 hari yang lalu

      Soaps without blueing are sold as "color" soaps, because adding blue or UV dye to red, yellow or patterned clothes would ruin the appearance.

    • Miglė K
      Miglė K 10 hari yang lalu

      @Happy Trails if you turn out to be sensitive to chemical blue dyes try getting some natural indigo - it works by oxidizing on top of a fabric and it takes a lot of layers to build up that intense blue so it might work the same way

    • Allan Gibson
      Allan Gibson 12 hari yang lalu

      @Happy Trails Most perfumes as aromatics (which doesn’t actually mean they smell - it means they have a benzene ring in their chemical structure).

    • Happy Trails
      Happy Trails 12 hari yang lalu

      @Allan Gibson I was aware of that. I figure though that if I add it separately on a sacrificial test item, and if it doesn't work out, well then I haven't wasted an entire bottle of detergent. Not sure if bluing will be an issue for me, it's mostly fragrances that are the problem. I buy the free and clear detergents to be safe because I react to so many things!

    • Allan Gibson
      Allan Gibson 12 hari yang lalu

      @Happy Trails Guess what - bluing is a chemical dye.

  • Jeanette Ireland
    Jeanette Ireland Bulan Yang lalu +1994

    These instructions are not restricted to Edwardian times; we learned all of this in school. As for washing machines, my mother was the first person in our village to have an electric washing machine because my father had to do the family laundry one weekend following my mother’s back injury due to a fall. He claims he had never worked so hard in his adultlife. My father was a coal and stone miner.

    • lillull
      lillull 3 jam yang lalu

      @Dulcie Midwinter Thank you!

    • Dulcie Midwinter
      Dulcie Midwinter 4 jam yang lalu +1

      @lillull Oh bless! If I remember rightly you first, of course, remove all the hair using a comb then you swish it about in a warm solution of soapy water. In those days we used to use something called Lux soap flakes that you had to dissolve in water as the usual washing powders were too harsh on the bristles, or so our rather tyrannical teacher thought! Then you rinsed it in warm water and removed any remaining hair with the comb. We used to dry them with a clean towel. This has taken me back so many years! I can still smell that Lux fragrance and can still see the bowl with it in. It turned the water milky. Not sure if they even make it anymore but predominantly it was used to wash woollens and delicate fabrics. Unfortunately, I have also remembered that domestic science teacher! 😕

    • lillull
      lillull 18 jam yang lalu

      @Dulcie Midwinter If you don't mind my asking - and if you still remember - what /is/ the proper way of washing a hairbrush? I'm never able to get mine as clean as I'd like...

    • Dulcie Midwinter
      Dulcie Midwinter 8 hari yang lalu +1

      We also had lessons like this in school. Domestic Science was what it was called in my time in the UK. How to wash clothes by hand, how to wash hairbrushes etc in fact how to wash practically everything alongside cookery lessons presided over by a rather nasty female teacher whose main aim in life seemed to have been to terrify the life out of small girls. Although by this time in my life washboard and coppers were on the wane and most families had at least rudimentary washing machines she insisted on us washing everything by hand so I fully sympathise with my female forebears. We were not allowed to bring our own clothes to school to wash, instead we were given them by the teacher. We didn't mind doing this really but when she started bringing in her male lodgers clothes which included long coms we told our parents who complained en masse to the headmistress.

    • ceset
      ceset 10 hari yang lalu +1

      @Miglė K All of the working were practically slaves throughout history. The point is, unlike today, if it weren't for women filling the roles they did in history, nothing else would be able to fill those roles, because the working men didn't have much choice in the labor they had to do all day either. So who else? What you said is still happening in many parts of the world today, why don't you spend your energy on that instead?

  • B Stone
    B Stone Bulan Yang lalu +10

    My poor great-grandmother! For a short time after she was widowed (husband had died in an accident at work, where he was employed delivering bottled gas. Enough said.), she tried to support herself and her daughter by doing other people's laundry, but she couldn't make enough money that way. She was saved when her mother came to live with them, bringing along her widow of Civil War veteran's pension. They lived on that while my great-grandmother went to nursing school (there was such a school in the town where they lived) and earned enough money for books by nursing on the side. She was eventually able to make a good living. It is interesting to note that her father-in-law still expected her to pay rent on the house they'd been living in (no electricity, no running water) and that three years after his son's death he suggested that my grandmother, who was 7, should quit school and go to work in the local shoe factory. My great-grandmother not only did not take her out of school, she sent her to college. I hate to think of her struggling to wash other people's clothes in 1904!

    • Courtney de Sade
      Courtney de Sade 28 hari yang lalu +1

      oh wow, that is such an amazing story and it's wonderful that it's been passed down to you. i hope you have that written down somewhere! your great-grandmother sounds like she was incredibly strong and it's so wonderful that she was able to keep your grandmother in school. thank you for sharing!

  • Sheila Coleman-Castells
    Sheila Coleman-Castells 24 hari yang lalu +65

    This was fascinating. I have SO much more respect for the average "washwoman", and I can see why a very SKILLED washwoman was a profession that was SORELY needed by everyone, regardless of class. Of course, in the "lower" and "middle" classes, a Mother would have done this, but many people used outside laundresses and laundries because they were time-saving and they were worth the money spent.

    • adajanetta1
      adajanetta1 19 hari yang lalu +2

      I once read (part of ) Harriet Beecher Stowe's novel We and Our Neighbours in which a servant's daughter who had become a fallen woman, was returned to respectable employment because she knew how to iron.
      This would have been sad irons, heated on a stove, of course, and bloody heavy.
      Part of the trouble Bernadette is having here is that she is not equipped to do the work, except for that huge kettle. A mangle alone would have been a godsend.

  • Sally Philpin
    Sally Philpin Bulan Yang lalu +5

    This might sound strange but I loved it when I saw you pick something up from the floor using your toes, both my daughter and I do that all the time as it's a lot easier than bending down (I used to be able to pick up a squash ball just with my toes). We were both diagnosed with Ehlers Danlos syndrome in our early teens so I've taught her to cope.

    • Courtney de Sade
      Courtney de Sade 28 hari yang lalu +1

      I do this too! it's way easier to to maneuver an object by foot than it is to bend over and possibly dislocate a knee, or shoulder, or vertebrae of your choosing 😂

  • Chacha
    Chacha 27 hari yang lalu +78

    It makes me so happy that so many people are sharing their family/childhood stories about laundry. 🥰

  • Beth Liebman
    Beth Liebman Bulan Yang lalu +1229

    You just neatly demonstrated why if an Edwardian household could afford it, they hired a washer woman to do the laundry.

    • DJ
      DJ 13 hari yang lalu

      My grandmother took in laundry in the twenties and thirties to help her family

    • Kate
      Kate 27 hari yang lalu +1

      @MossyMozart I live with my boyfriend and our household has a washing machine but a few of us go to the laundromat becayse they work all week and all want to do their washing on the same day. And we don't have a dryer so the line gets full so they put all their work clothes, towels etc in the dryer at the laundromat.

    • BoundlessEyes
      BoundlessEyes Bulan Yang lalu +4

      Referring to having 'arms like a washerwoman' or 'washerwoman's arms' is a fairly common similie/metaphor in Edwardian literature to connote muscular physique.

    • Vivibee
      Vivibee Bulan Yang lalu +2

      This. And especially if you had children I'd guess. I mean, imagine all of the nappy laundry alone... You would certainly have to do it very often, too, to then have enough for the following days.

    • Choddle
      Choddle Bulan Yang lalu +1

      @Nellie Bly That depends a lot on when your apartment block was built, I think. We lived in an old one where you couldn’t wash early in the morning or at night because the sound and vibrations would travel though the floor.

  • Maria A. Pellicciari
    Maria A. Pellicciari 23 hari yang lalu +49

    I was raised in the Italian countryside (Tuscan-Emilian Appennine region) with my great aunts natd Grandpa (born between 1896 and 1904) I'm 52 (born in 1969) and occasionally the electricity would go out due to storms or winter snow-ins. So we had a large scrubbing washboard where we would wash everything with soap of Marseille (I still use if for all my undergarments and delicates),and washing or baking soda for whites and stains, and a fire stove where we would place an iron cast iron on an iron plate. Once heated, we picked it up with an oven mitt and ironed away until it needed re-heating. We always used a spray bottle with orange blossom water in it, and one with diluted starch, for the different garments and to keep them moist while ironing. I miss those quiet days of labor that usually turned out to be meditative (because of the time it took for ironing) and relationship building (you had time to chat about everything throughout the day).

  • sister kerry
    sister kerry 20 hari yang lalu +5

    I have started making my own ecological washing powder. I am so pleased with it. It washes clothes better, makes them softer, smell nicer and is better for the washing machine. The cost of each wash load is probably under 5p (English pennies). I made one mistake on my first batch. I put the powder in an ordinary tin and the salts in the recipe drew in the ambient water and made it lumpy. I then transferred it into a large bread bin that has a seal around the lid. Problem solved. I must say, this was a brilliant video and the most fascinating comments section I have ever read.
    Ps. Old lady advice. I wouldn't pour acid or any product directly on to the clothes. Add the substance to the water first, sloosh and only then add the clothes. Bonus Ps. Stain removal works best when addressing the stain only. The dress itself can be washed afterwards.

    • Koko Hale
      Koko Hale 3 hari yang lalu +1

      Could you share your washing powder recipe?

  • Arúviel Evenstar
    Arúviel Evenstar Bulan Yang lalu +107

    My grandma did this kind of washing. She used the shed for washing. There was a stove and a large washing pan, and a wooden spoon, A large one. And she litterly cooked the white wash for hours with sunlight soap and probably soda. And after rinsing for another 10 times by hand, she had a linguee. I am 52 and this is the ‘70 s in the Netherlands and my grandma was a very old fashioned lady. Washing machines were for the rich and wealthy people and very modern. A lot of people washed still by hand in those days in the Netherlands. The white linen were also dried on the grass in the sun, they called it the ‘ bleek’ and it is translated as the bleech. But also on the washing line. Monday was the washing day and Tuesday iron day.
    My grandmother was busy with the was the whole day.
    She also used ox gall for stains and blue indeed. My own mother used that sort of things too during the ‘70 en ‘80s but she used the washing machine as well. My great grandmother wore regional costumes for the region where I come from, which was even more difficult to wash, because she had to starch her white lace cap. That was a very specific manner and nowadays nobody weirs that anymore and only a few people know how to press and make it.

    • Arúviel Evenstar
      Arúviel Evenstar 3 hari yang lalu +1

      @BlackSeranna well If I am not to busy I can make photos

    • BlackSeranna
      BlackSeranna 3 hari yang lalu +1

      @Arúviel Evenstar Oh, that sounds so cool! I love seeing photos of old fashioned cosplay! That bonnet is the only thing I have left of my grandma, except an unfinished,elegant lace crochet project in a cookie tin that looks like it was started in the late 1920’s!

    • Arúviel Evenstar
      Arúviel Evenstar 3 hari yang lalu +3

      @BlackSeranna O that is so nice😀a bonnet. In the Netherlands women didn’t weir a bonnet like little house on the prairie, only very rich lady’s who lived in castles or landhouses or other wealthy buildings. In the country side every village had their own folklore clothing’s, regional clothings, so one could see which village you came from. Boys and men too.
      I always wanted to wear the clothes of my great grandmother ( even as a child I wanted to weir long skirts and oldfashioned clothes) now I love cosplay😄with Victorian dresses or medieval dresses.
      We live in a small medieval castle and at Xmas time we have a Dickens fair in our garden, and I dress up as a 1850 lady then.😀

    • BlackSeranna
      BlackSeranna 25 hari yang lalu +12

      Thank you for sharing, what an amazing memory! My own grandmother used to wear a bonnet like what you see on the show Little House On The Prairie. I still have one of the bonnets she made for wearing in the garden to keep the sun off her face. My grandmother also wore dresses that went to mid-calf. I never saw her in pants, but she was a tough woman and "ruled the roost"!

  • Deborah Rosen
    Deborah Rosen 29 hari yang lalu +61

    Applied Edwardian home chemistry class is in session! There are reasons why laundresses of the Edwardian day worked very hard for long hours, and typically didn't live long. If the heat and the weights and the repetitive motions didn't wear them out, the chemicals definitely did. Some of the most notable courtesans of "La Belle Epoque" were daughters of washerwomen who saw the work killing their mothers and swore "that will never be me."

  • Emily Anne
    Emily Anne Bulan Yang lalu +85

    Bluing is still an everyday thing. The blue dye is often added to laundry detergent, unless it specifically says there are no optical brighteners in it, as you see in free and clear varieties! Also I love washing soda. Where I live in QLD Australia we have absurdly hard water, so I add 1/2 cup to every load to soften the water and it works very well, and makes my detergent way more effective too.

    • Abi Gail
      Abi Gail 8 hari yang lalu

      Optical brighteners are *not* blue dies. So, if the detergent says it doesn't contain an optical brightener, it still may contain loads of blue dies.
      Blue dies are just blue. Optical brighteners emit blue light when absorbing UV light. The effect (in day light) is the same, but it's a very different principle.

    • Miglė K
      Miglė K 10 hari yang lalu +2

      @therrufying that's because animal fibers, like wool, silk and human hair, are naturally slightly acidic (pH of around 6-6,5 for wool, even lower for silk but not sure of the actual value) and keeping them slightly acidic keeps them more stable, which is the opposite for plant materials, which are naturally slightly alkaline

    • therrufying
      therrufying 13 hari yang lalu

      @Sammyra Nyx Ooh, that's super cool! Thanks for telling me!

    • Sammyra Nyx
      Sammyra Nyx 14 hari yang lalu +1

      @therrufying It binds to the calcium ions and takes them out of the solution. Helps soften the water but also leaves lots of soap scum if you don't rinse properly (acid rinse will take care of that though) 😁

    • Sempiternel Desiderata
      Sempiternel Desiderata 24 hari yang lalu +1

      @Kate but you have to br careful if you are prone to kidney stones

  • Dutch Q Welshmtn
    Dutch Q Welshmtn 29 hari yang lalu +45

    My mom was a beautician back in the day. They would have taken the bar of Castile soap and grated it to place the flakes into the water to make shampoo for the hair and, no doubt, the soap for laundry. P.S. Lestoil multipurpose cleaning liquid, a product still available, has petroleum products in it. I was told, years ago, to use it on garments men soil with dirt and grease and it does work wonders.

    • Andree Vaillancourt
      Andree Vaillancourt 24 hari yang lalu +7

      It's so easy when you use Lestoil!
      I remember those ads. I was a little girl, so I wasn't sure what Lestoil exactly did, but it made the job easier. ☺️✌🏽

    • BlackSeranna
      BlackSeranna 25 hari yang lalu +1

      I wish I'd had such information back in the 1990's when I was just married!

  • SH
    SH 29 hari yang lalu +35

    In New Orleans, the traditional laundry day meal was/is red beans and rice, a dish that could be easily prepared on on before washing day.
    Your dress is so very lovely. That said, watching this makes me very grateful for my washing machine. My clothes are nowhere near as fragile as yours, so here's to my Maytag!

  • Sharon Zimmerman
    Sharon Zimmerman 28 hari yang lalu +20

    Bernadette brilliantly describes the existential crisis of laundry. The clothes you wash in must also be washed.

  • Jenni Schimmels
    Jenni Schimmels Bulan Yang lalu +1846

    Man, I can completely understand why "laundry day" was its own dedicated day and why "laundress" was a full job! This makes me very grateful for the miracle of modern laundry devices. (I say that but I will also cheerfully use a no-rinse wool wash - either Soak or Eucalan - and either the sink or the tub to wash my handknits and even my more delicate non-knit garments, because I don't mind taking care to extend their longevity.) The rolling in a towel to squeeze out the excess is also how I get most of the moisture out of my knits!
    As an aside, the mic clipped to a wooden spoon sent me into an extended gigglefit, and I lowkey hope "mic clipped to prop" will end up being a running gag in the Bernadette Banner cinematic universe.

    • Susanna Bonke
      Susanna Bonke 3 hari yang lalu

      @Katie-did okay, your children starving. So you worked. Or they needed school books. etc. ( I understand your point though )

    • Tymon Dąbrowski
      Tymon Dąbrowski Bulan Yang lalu +1

      Seems like plenty of IDclipsrs do that "mic on a prop" thing. There is an artist called Ethan Becker who puts his mic ob a knife and waves it dangerously.

    • Katherine Murphy
      Katherine Murphy Bulan Yang lalu +3

      I also liked how she hid her 21st century device in the book as she was advertising for Audible. 😄

    • Shade Dragon
      Shade Dragon Bulan Yang lalu +1

      @Gabriel D'Artemius Milo is an anthropology IDclipsr with a very relaxing voice! And a white plastic spoon.

    • Jessica Grady
      Jessica Grady Bulan Yang lalu +6

      That's how I wash all my (non-superwash) handknits! Socks and stuff get thrown into the washer on delicate, but otherwise I soak the item in the sink with some Soak or Eucalan, squeeze out as much water as I can right in the sink, then roll it up in a towel and stomp on the towel to get out most of the rest of the water. Then it's just lay flat (with a box fan blowing on it) to dry!

  • GhostPengy
    GhostPengy 25 hari yang lalu +7

    Here is a tip what my grandpa taught me. Get gauze, make it damp, lay it over the garment, and then iron it. The dampness of gauze removes the any dry wrinkles in the clothing as it steams it. It was how he ironed before invention of steam irons. It is essentially the same thing.

  • Ruth Thomas
    Ruth Thomas 19 hari yang lalu +3

    This is interesting. The way I was told to make your own soap was to grate a bit off a Fels Naphtha bar and dissolve that in water. I think it is quite a bit stronger than castile, so maybe that was just for work clothes and the milder soap for finer material. I still will (rarely) use borax. It is a great laundry "booster." I also use bluing to make my whites appear whiter (rather than yellowish.) So, I guess if it works, it works. 😊

  • A Hippie
    A Hippie 16 hari yang lalu +3

    This comment section is amazing.
    Also, thank you Bernadette for this eye-opening video on the art of laundry! We tend to underappreciated the amount of knowledge needed for the household to go through a day smoothly.

  • Lena Malden
    Lena Malden 29 hari yang lalu +17

    I have some follow up questions: how many wears would they get out of clothes before they had to wash them... I imagine you'd wear the same dress for at least 3-4 days. Then what kind of deodorant were they using, because I know if I inherited one thing from my ancestors, it's the stench 😂

    • Sempiternel Desiderata
      Sempiternel Desiderata 24 hari yang lalu +8

      Material makes a huge difference on how much / how smelly your sweat is imho - linen is awesome while polyester clothing is 👎👎👎

    • Minoan
      Minoan 25 hari yang lalu +2

      They stunk just the same

    • Daniel CH
      Daniel CH 26 hari yang lalu +11

      Under clothes keeps your outer clothes from contacting much of your skin, so they don't pick up so much sweat and stench. I imagine those could be treated more roughly, and a few blemishes on them would not be so easily visible.

    • Jennifer C
      Jennifer C 26 hari yang lalu +5

      They didn’t eat the same junk and most likely didn’t smell as bad as us. Our modern bathing habits create us more stench.

  • 乂SuzuKa乂
    乂SuzuKa乂 Bulan Yang lalu +930

    When I first learned that rich households in the Victorian era would hire several laundry maids just blew my mind. NOW I know why they need that many. Not only the Lords’ and Ladies’ clothing requires delicate washing procedures, let’s not forget other non-clothing garments like bedsheets, towels, napkins/handkerchiefs, table cloths, and I guess they also need to wash other servants’ clothes? No wonder they needed that many laundry maids

    • Bree Badger
      Bree Badger 4 hari yang lalu +2

      @Liz Cosgrove Their entire lives were micromanaged by their employers. They had to wear clothing approved of by their employers. What little free time they had (which was usually on Sunday afternoons) could only be spent doing "approved" activities or hobbies. They had to live with them. They had to go to the same church as their employers. And they had no workplace protections either.
      Even a simple unfounded rumor started by someone that didn't like them could get them fired and tossed out - just like that, they're unemployed and homeless. And from there, they usually ended up in the Victorian Workhouses where they had to endure an entirely different level of abuse.
      We're definitely a lot better off now than we were under the Victorian era.
      Oh and mental health issues aren't new. They've existed as long as we've been humans. They used to just toss ppl with mental health problems into asylums were society would pretend they didn't exist and where they were abused and neglected until they died. Prior to that? Well, a lot of them were quietly abandoned by their parents or just outright killed. Do you really think a society that didn't blink at drowning a litter of kittens or puppies would have flinched at a parent doing the same to a child that was "mentally afflicted" or "deformed" in some way? Most saw it as putting the child "out of its misery." And if the child was baptized? Well, it went to heaven anyway.

    • Flying Nutrition
      Flying Nutrition 5 hari yang lalu +4

      @Liz Cosgrove no they did not ... better on an unemployment than a total slave that had not time at all ...

    • Liz Cosgrove
      Liz Cosgrove 5 hari yang lalu +2

      But think of all the employment that gave to local women. Infact the large estates in England sometimes had 100s of people employed.
      Progress or so called progress is leaving billions of people on the unemployment lines now with nothing to do only take drugs and gives people mental health issues. The devil fines work for idle hands and all that.
      Our modern society is a disaster. People need work to feel worth while. We are often times defined by the work we do. No normal person wants to be sitting on an unemployment line and be useless to society. So personally I think the victorians had a better society in many ways.

    • Bree Badger
      Bree Badger 11 hari yang lalu +11

      And then there's the poor Maid of All Work who had to do all of that by themselves! My great grandmother was a Maid of All Work after her family kicked her out in her early 20s. Unfortunately she died before I was old enough to talk to her about it. I wish I could go back in time and give her the biggest hug (and then talk to her about workers rising up against the ownership class).

  • Summer Time
    Summer Time 26 hari yang lalu +3

    Watching the IDclips channel ’’ Townsends’’ about historical laundry part 1,2 &3 I learned SO MUCH & how very difficult things were for laundress & or poor ppl usually women often had 1 of 2 choices to make a living laundry or selling your intimate time, but it made me appreciate how very challenging times have always been pre Industrial Age & how awesome mechanical washing machines are. Ya never know at times we may have to resort back too. Since it’s become kind of popular that I’m aware of idk in the last 5-10 years & people have been making their own laundry powder & there’s a bazillion recipes on any & every social apps I feel like quite a bit more info could’ve been attained. I def appreciated the Townsends fascinating explanation of exactly the specific reasoning of HOW & WHY these chemicals were attained.

  • Reava Nante
    Reava Nante Bulan Yang lalu +15

    Most of all, thank you for your re enactment of the Edwardian Cleaning ritual.
    Some things like wrapping wet clothes to semi dry and sprinkling while ironing I remember from childhood. There was a particular sprinkler attachment for a water bottle that was very handy. Also Sanforized cottons revolutionized cotton apparel. Some people think that the shrinking stops after you wash it a couple times. I laugh endlessly at this. I have seen so many articles of clothing, that turned into doll clothes. Because they were washed. The cotton has to be treated for shrinking, mostly preshrunk and rolled al lot. I hated cotton because if I had a nice cotton garment it was sure to shrink into a tiny replica of itself, taunting with its irretrievable diminution. They finally came out with pretreated cotton and it changed everything with modern clothing. Then with Permanent Press people stopped ironing, because the cotton had been pretreated and didn't wrinkle like it used to,.

  • P
    P Bulan Yang lalu +16

    Pharmaceutical ("physic") literature from the era was just as frustrating.
    The recipes made careful note of the ingredients (and their sources).
    They sometimes specified required indicators of quality.
    They explained each operation, reaction, and process in exacting detail.
    But they rarely bothered to mention quantities or useful proportions for mixing.

  • Magda Mundt
    Magda Mundt 2 hari yang lalu +3

    OMG. My grandmother was from Netherlands, very experienced and neat in anything she did about housework.
    As a little girl, I helped her in laundry day (yes, there was a laundry day, Monday every week), and we went through many of the steps you described!! Pre-washing, boiling, many, many, many rinses in clean water, blue-dye, the wringer machine, starch, drying in a rolled cloth, ironing while still a bit wet... It was quite a science!!!
    She would use a LOT more of water than you did, though, but we already had water flowing out of taps -just imagine using so much water when you had to bring it bucket by bucket from a well-pump 😩!
    She married a Brazilian (I am Brazilian). This gave her (and me) a great benefit: if you lay a soaped white garment in the grass under the sun (no lack of that here), it saves you the soda/gasoline/kerosene/whatever steps - sun+soap is quite miraculous: 99% of stains don't resist, and both fabric and your hands suffer a lot less... I use this technique to this day on kitchen towels, stained table clothes, bath towels, and so on. Easy work, great result. The rest... well, I left behind me!!
    This was a lovely, very interesting video, thank you. How I pity the housewives and maids of Edwardian times, what a hard work 😳!!

  • Susan C
    Susan C Bulan Yang lalu +889

    The length of the dresses reflected social status and one’s lifestyle. Women involved in practical work wore dresses slightly raised from the ground as well as aprons to avoid the necessity of washing clothes worn regularly. Also, the work involved in washing clothes explains why middle class children, especially girls were obliged to behave with decorum and keep their clothes clean.

    • Mary Nnn
      Mary Nnn 15 hari yang lalu

      @yltraviole I do! this was a part of drastic social inequality of the time, which was one of the reasons behind the October revolution.

    • Susan C
      Susan C 23 hari yang lalu +1

      @BabyGirlXoXo I suppose, in a way, that was also tied to virtue. A lady’s reputation was considered far more important than that of a peasant. In the Middle Ages, aristocratic women wore a veil when they were out and about.

    • BabyGirlXoXo
      BabyGirlXoXo 23 hari yang lalu +2

      Today the longer your dress, the more modest we are, the more “problematic” at times. But people forget that the more covered or longer a woman’s outfit was in history signified her social standing.

    • Nikki Stephens
      Nikki Stephens 24 hari yang lalu +1

      @Kelsey They were young adults not kids. Teens wasn't even an idea.

    • Donna Maria
      Donna Maria 25 hari yang lalu +3

      @Kelsey Helping out with chores isn’t stopping a kid from being a kid. Yeah, kids learn from play…. They also learn from instruction. It’s much more beneficial to have your parents show you hands on how to do the necessary parts of living than to just grow up only playing, move out, & suddenly realise you don’t know how to wash clothes or cook etc. Just because a kid knows washing is hard work & chooses to save himself the hard work by not rolling in the mud doesn’t mean he isn’t getting to be a kid…. It just means he has more experience. When my son helps me cook dinner, he’s 10 times more likely to eat it. Not because he isn’t getting to be a child anymore…. But because he sees the hard work that goes into it. It’s a part of life. Why hide the process?

  • writergrl1992
    writergrl1992 2 hari yang lalu

    I have so many thoughts! But the funniest part for me was the “bluing”, and it’s really popularly used in India (or at least in my 90s childhood) while washing whites! Students usually had uniforms for school (elementary, middle, high school). We’d have one day of the week where we’d wear white clothes, and our moms would have to really take care that we don’t look unkempt. And sometimes overdo it… so there would be one kid with an unfortunate overly-blue outfit, while there would be some looking slightly yellow… idk how kids do it these days (laughs in millennial)
    The starch part is also familiar with my mom doing it for some of the cotton sarees to add some stiffness. And the gasoline part - which I believe would be petroleum in india- is actually used by my mom to dry clean silk sarees! She’d never throw them into washer or even give to the laundry service. Sarees are in a way outer garments since it’s be blouse and petticoat that touches the skin, but still it’s possible to sweat through in the Indian heat. My mom would air dry the silk Saree for however long it takes, after removing stains (presumably food stains because ahem you wear fancy stuffs to parties) with a cotton ball soaked in petroleum! No proximity to fire of any kind, of course! These were few personal observations that came into mind while watching your video! (I discovered your channel today and I’m potentially obsessed)

  • Jessica Rain City
    Jessica Rain City Bulan Yang lalu +44

    Gasoline? Sounds like they were “dry cleaning” using solvents.

    • Etti Purselane
      Etti Purselane 25 hari yang lalu +3

      Pine oil has always been used for cleaning. I use it for absolutely everything. I prefer pine oil.

    • Elena Herwagen
      Elena Herwagen 27 hari yang lalu +7

      Exactly! How do you think they clean kid gloves? With gasoline only, my grandma used to tell me.

  • Annette Ericsson
    Annette Ericsson Bulan Yang lalu +8

    When I was a child I watched my mom and grandma wash grandpas handkerchiefs. They were boiled outside over a fire in water and lye. Rinsed and hung up in the sun to dry. We ironed with an iron that was heavy and placed on the woodstove occasionally to heat back up. Grandma would spit on her finger and touch the iron to see when it was hot enough but not too hot. I got to help I had a small child iron that would also be placed on the stove. Grandma when washed her pillowcases, she starched and ironed same way. Then had a small wrinkler that was placed on the stove to heat up and wrinkle pleates on the ribbon that tied the pillow in. It took me over 40 years to find one of those at an antique flee market. I loved granmas linnen closet that displayed under glas her linnens all proper embroidered with initials, starched and the little ribbons flowing over the sheets !! Oh how I admired my Victorian granma. Long hair, always wore beautiful dresses. I though she was the most beautiful person in the world

  • Anna Brewer
    Anna Brewer 21 hari yang lalu +3

    I LOVE Ruth Goodman's books! I also love watching the BBC Farm Series that she works on- absolutely fascinating and so cool to hear you give her a plug. This was such a cool video and I so felt for your sweaty work that I nearly broke out in a sweat myself! Laudrey is not for sissys!

  • Stellaluna
    Stellaluna Bulan Yang lalu +619

    Fun fact about blueing-it's sort of done by most modern detergents in the form of optical brighteners. Most modern detergents have fluorescent dyes in them, which makes them seem brighter to the eye because they absorb light from the sun and emit it back, so it literally glows a bit under the right kind of light radiation (usually in the UV spectrum, so sunlight, though it's not noticeable apart from looking bright and clean to the naked eye under most conditions). If you find your white clothing lighting up under a blacklight, you can probably thank your detergent. That's what makes those "whitest whites." You can find stories online of military people who have to switch to non-fluorescent detergents so their clothes are harder to detect by those using night-vision equipment.

    • rionka
      rionka Bulan Yang lalu +1

      This is fascinating, thank you

    • skeleleton boi
      skeleleton boi Bulan Yang lalu +2

      when my dad was getting into bow hunting he had my mum specially wash his hunting clothes, and now I know why!

    • Stellaluna
      Stellaluna Bulan Yang lalu +2

      @Brina Blue Ooh, that's fascinating! It sounds pretty they way you describe it

    • Brina Blue
      Brina Blue Bulan Yang lalu +7

      I was looking for this comment. What is really interesting is that it's not so if you buy your laundry detergent in Mexico. Their visual preference is to have a very subtle dusky pinkish color to their whites.

    • Stellaluna
      Stellaluna Bulan Yang lalu +1

      @Ash That's so neat!

  • Christine W
    Christine W Bulan Yang lalu +21

    Honestly this is why I typically wear undershirts- so that I could wash the unders and not the top garments as often. It’s very handy.

  • Kenna Bartz
    Kenna Bartz Bulan Yang lalu +5

    My mother in law had a soap grater with holes about the size of a nickel making it easier to boil the soap. Thank you for sharing this process.

  • Nola P
    Nola P 24 hari yang lalu +11

    This also makes me think about how essential it was to have a homebody at home to be able to take care of all of these chores that took forever and a half to do. Still not an excuse to force women into husbandry nor to treat them as second class citizens, but its important to acknowledge the pressing (literally and figuratively) need that housewives fulfilled for centuries.

  • Tomás
    Tomás Bulan Yang lalu +9

    On "why gasoline": for almost the same reason you use soap! It's meant to remove apolar substances, the difference being soap helps apolar substances blotches break apart and get suspended in water, while organic sovents, such as gasoline, dissolve the apolar dirtiness in the solvent itself. Basically, it's a dry cleaning recipe... which, for whatever reason, includes water... but the general idea of modern dry cleaning procedures is there: exchanging the water for some organic solvent. Absolutely makes sense.

    • S Tho
      S Tho 4 hari yang lalu

      Well said.
      Any commercial laundry would have low octane gasoline (white gasoline) on hand after the 1860s to handle dry cleaning on fabrics that couldn't handle ash fat soaps or would bleed for color differences.
      You can't make kerosene lamp oil without extracting gasoline (the lighter compounds in the crude mix)...so gasoline was a waste material or used in high intensity lamps like RR headlights.
      So Doc Brown could have easily obtained gasoline in 1885, by a visit to the Chinese laundry, the RR depot or a general store.

  • Janice Rodriguez
    Janice Rodriguez Bulan Yang lalu +246

    Letters from my great-grandmother to my grandfather, written in 1919, detail the family’s money-saving plan for dealing with laundry while he was in college: He mailed his clothing home; she washed it with a washing machine powered by the motor of their kerosene-powered Waterloo Boy tractor, ironed it, and mailed it back. That November, she wrote that when he came home, he should “bring all your dirty clothes and bed-clothes what you get from now till Thanksgiving along. Then we will exercise the Waterloo Boy, thus saving a nice laundry bill and wear on clothes. You run the engine, and I do the bossing.” So glad I have a washing machine (also glad I have her wonderful letters!)

  • SnapshotOfASoul
    SnapshotOfASoul 25 hari yang lalu +9

    I learnt a lot of this while camping as a child - we'd go out into the Canadian forest where there wasn't any electricity, and we often were not allowed to do more than a few things in the running water provided, so we'd have to do our laundry by hand. A lot of this - such as the laundry soap bars - were readily purchasable, even in Edwardian times. There are ones advertising they've been around since the late Victorian era! However, I think that a lot of us also know how to hand wash because of the problem of pads and tampons not being that good until quite recently. You were bound to have leaks, and there was a whole procedure in my house for if that happened, or if you got a scrape and blood was now all over your nice shirt. This is why a lot of older laundry rooms, up until the mid-70s, had big sinks installed - for hand-scrubbing. I still remember being a kid, even in the 2000s, having to scrub grass stains out of the knees of jeans as my mother lectured me. It wasn't just for the poor (we were poor) but rather something everyone seemed to relate to, because before high-efficiency this and that, clothing could get absolutely ruined.

  • honeyfungus90
    honeyfungus90 23 hari yang lalu +3

    Some tools the instructions didn't bother to record might have been laundry tongs and a washing dolly. The tongs are like big wooden tweezers a foot long, used to pick up and prod wet laundry. The washing dolly is a sort of plunger on a long stick, used for agitation. They would have saved putting bare hands in the water.

  • Mags Greenslade
    Mags Greenslade Bulan Yang lalu +3

    Apologies if this book has already been mentioned in the many comments: I recommend a book called Longborn House by Jo Baker which tells a parallel story to Pride and Prejudice from the servants point of view and goes in to detail about washing the clothes of the six Bennett women.

  • Susan
    Susan 22 hari yang lalu +17

    My Grandma, who was born in 1903, had the motto: “if some is good, more is better!”. I would apply that to using the detergents and acids 🥴

  • j g
    j g Bulan Yang lalu +5

    When Bernadette starts talking about the time it is taking and I can't help but think about how much time filming yourself (having to set up the camera, the framing, the microphone, making sure the battery is charged, checking and rechecked everything) also adds a fair bit of time to how long activities take, it is just inevitable and can make having even one person to assist a huge benefit. I help my mom film videos to teach mindfulness! So it's just on the mind!

  • W.O.
    W.O. Bulan Yang lalu +3

    My mother spent ten years doing wash of an entire family (of like 4-5 people at least) entirely by hand until she could finally afford a washer. So getting up at 4am, carrying so many buckets, spending the entire day doing nothing but laundry. By the time I was born and old enough to help we had a washer, but our water situation isn't great, so don't worry! I also had my fill of the family tradition of carrying many, many, MANY buckets of water :) (

  • Steven Wilgus
    Steven Wilgus 24 hari yang lalu +4

    Also, in my military career, I was in when we actually DID use starched fatigues so I learned how to starch and iron them. A spray bottle - the modern equivalent of the sprinkle bottle used then - allows one time to fix the crease. But it WAS very time consuming, but as I was a medic, I was held to a level of appearance far higher than most. So I have experienced the "fun" you shared....I really don't miss it....

  • zestymoo
    zestymoo Hari Yang lalu

    I watched this with my mom just now and she said it brought back a lot of memories of her childhood. She grew up in a small town with her grandparents in the 60's and remembers laundry day. Apparently the apartment building they lived in had a mangle and a press for residents to use. She was also providing a lot of commentary on how you should have been adding more of every product lol. It was really fascinating!

  • Louise Morris
    Louise Morris Bulan Yang lalu +200

    My grandmother always washed her underwear in a bucket with hard soap and a “podger” as she called it, a modern day 1970s small plastic version of a dolly. The final rinse would have a blue bag (solid dye block in a muslin bag) dipped in it to brighten the whites. I still vividly remember the day our black and white tuxedo cat found the still damp bag and evidently had a very enjoyable afternoon with it. The laundry tiles rinsed clean easily enough but the cat remained black and bright blue for quite some time.

    • Mardy Roux
      Mardy Roux 13 hari yang lalu

      @ug thump Yes, I recall being stung by wasps as a small girl, and out came the blue bag from the laundry. It helped!

    • ug thump
      ug thump Bulan Yang lalu +3

      I remember blue bags! I was told they could be applied as a remedy for inchman stings.

    • BlackCanary87
      BlackCanary87 Bulan Yang lalu +5

      @J Hardman We had a black and white Portuguese water dog growing up and the neighbors once dyed him blue with food coloring as a joke! We thought it was great but my mom was less amused and washed him immediately.

    • J Hardman
      J Hardman Bulan Yang lalu +9

      oh the poor cat! I can easily picture our black and white dog (who is very sweet and smart but is definitely still an idiotic puppy sometimes) doing the same exact thing!

  • Joshua Graham
    Joshua Graham 4 hari yang lalu +2

    I remember watching an educational film from the 40s that was practically begging people to stop washing dry clean clothes in gasoline, for their own safety. I was amazed to learn that commercial dry cleaners used to use it, too -- though, as the short was quick to point out, they were required by law to have special safety and ventilation devices.

  • Stuff About Hockey
    Stuff About Hockey 24 hari yang lalu +2

    In regards to the information you found about using gasoline to wash the dress, it was likely based on early dry cleaning concepts. If you look into the history of dry cleaning, they used non-water based solvents like gasoline to "dry scour" clothes. Actual gasoline didn't last too long bc of its flammability, but similar solvents started coming into play. The info you found referencing a gasoline soak for lightweight summer dresses probably came from "dry scouring". I don't recommend doing a demo of early dry cleaning process (even replacements for gasoline were still flamable & highly caustic) but the history of dry cleaning is pretty interesting to read about.

  • Lilly Ess
    Lilly Ess Bulan Yang lalu +3

    My great grandmother apparently stated that indoor plumbing and water readily available from the tap was a life saver. Imagine trying to complete this task by pulling water from a well.

  • El Jefe Americano
    El Jefe Americano 8 hari yang lalu +2

    As it turns out, if Bernadette wishes to have her advertisement viewed in its entirety, placing herself inside a large pot is a fantastic way to hold my attention!
    Regarding the rest of the video, I was the eldest sibling in a single-parent household. Laundry was one of the chores I eventually took on for myself and my younger siblings. I disliked the amount of work that took with modern methods. Watching this... well, I'd say it makes me appreciate the technology we have at our disposal, but really, it's my siblings who should appreciate it the most. I certainly would not have done all of this for them on such a regular basis without dragging them along for the ride!

  • Miriam Gillham
    Miriam Gillham Bulan Yang lalu +673

    It may come as a surprise Bernadette in this day and age but my mother who is now 90 years old taught her children to use kerosene to clean stains with. She also taught us how to clean the bathtub and sink and windows too with newspaper and kerosene and it actually works. I remember her boiling the water in the copper outside on a outdoor fire when I was age five. She eventually had eight children and as oldest girl over the years I learnt, multiple stain removal mixes, lye soap mixes, borax mixes, lemon and salt mixes, milk cleansers, hot water/cold water soaking. How to make and use starch mixes. We washed all day and then ironed the next day by damping down the clothes, (this was done the night before when we folded the washing and helped prepare tomorrow’s ironing) rolling them up to set the water in the clothing. Next day we ironed. Mum had black, heavy stove top irons with removable wooden handles that clipped on and off and she would heat them on the wood stove. So there was the ironing. Huge. Back to the washing, she taught us how to use a washing board, wooden ones, even a glass one, mangles, wringer washing machines, eventually twin tubs and then a real modern type of washing machine arrived in my teens. Yayyy! I’m 61 and these are very clear and very real memories. I was watching you with all the concoctions and I wanted to yell out to you, please put on modern gloves. My hands look like ancient ones hands, because back then we didn’t use gloves. I must have been about ten when we started using them but but then old habits were hard to break. It was a two day affair, the washing in our house, taking out all the ribbons from the eyelet lace on the church dresses, then rethreadng them the next day. She also knew how to wash silk and wool and would sponge clean my fathers and grandfather’s woollen suits and press them as well. It was an education to learn from her. Thank you for taking me back through much of my childhood, but please be careful of your hands and your back. I’m so relieved that this is an archeology garment experiment for you and not an ongoing reality. I also love how excited and committed you are to learning about these practices and then doing them to show us all. It’s so amazing that you do.

    • Miriam Gillham
      Miriam Gillham Bulan Yang lalu

      @rionka Thank you. Life gives different journeys to each of us. It’s so interesting to read about stories too.

    • rionka
      rionka Bulan Yang lalu

      Thank you for sharing! ❤️

    • Miriam Gillham
      Miriam Gillham Bulan Yang lalu

      @Jomacl Kego Thank you. Appreciate the information. I will check that out.😊

    • Jomacl Kego
      Jomacl Kego Bulan Yang lalu +1

      @Miriam Gillham You may get the ingredients at online shops.

    • Miriam Gillham
      Miriam Gillham Bulan Yang lalu +1

      @Jessie Gilbert I will get to it, fingers crossed.

  • Crow T. Robot
    Crow T. Robot 24 hari yang lalu +3

    Watching this reminded me of a quote from the Carousel of Progress - "Now it takes me only five hours to do the wash. Imagine, it used to take two days!"

  • atwistedstory
    atwistedstory Bulan Yang lalu +2

    I always wondered why at Disney world Carousel of Progress they always mention the improvements to laundry. And watching this whole process, it makes sense and it makes me so grateful for a washing machine.

  • YT4Me57
    YT4Me57 11 hari yang lalu +1

    When I was a little girl (60 years ago), I often watched my grandmother perform many of the same steps on her clothing on wash day. The wasboard, soaking, bar soap and washing soda, buing, rolling up the starched pieces so they wouldn't fully dry before ironing...I have vivid memories of it all. However, grandma made it all seem effortless. How?! 😳 My mom used a washing machine. She wasn't about that turn of the last century life. Today, I strain to recall the last time I actually ironed anything, LOL. 🤣

  • Wendy Wicks
    Wendy Wicks 27 hari yang lalu +3

    This was such fun. I grew up with the blue in a bag during the rinse and later blue drops from a bottle. Before spray irons my mother used to have a bottle with a top which had holes in it and mum would sprinkle the water to keep the fabrics moist and soft when ironing. Thanks for this ... it was interesting and also taking me back to my childhood.

  • Nurmi Husa
    Nurmi Husa Bulan Yang lalu +639

    In the 1970s when I was in high school, I was sent home to ask one of my parents what the most important technological advance during their lifetime whites. My mother, born in 1914 and the eldest daughter in a family of seven, said immediately and without hesitation “the washing machine”. And then she explain to me what “washday” meant in the 1920s. This is actually an excellent question to ask your elders, “what’s the most important technological advancement during your lifetime?” There are no wrong answers. Only extremely interesting ones inspiring cross generational conversation. (My answer at age 65? The desktop computer.)

    • Happy Trails
      Happy Trails 12 hari yang lalu

      @Renee Reavis I have distant memories of MUDS, Mosaic, and usenet.

    • Nurmi Husa
      Nurmi Husa 14 hari yang lalu +1


    • Nurmi Husa
      Nurmi Husa 14 hari yang lalu

      @Brandy Jean My father born in 1915 homesteaded with his parents in Manitoba. That was as primitive as 50 years earlier. And he saw man walking on the moon. More change in his life time than ours because we are familiar with the concept of rapid change. They didn’t have this.

    • Allan Gibson
      Allan Gibson 19 hari yang lalu +2

      @Renee Reavis My first networked computer went online in 1982…
      The sound of a 300 baud audio modem is unforgettable (look up the movie War Games to experience it).
      But then I lived in a odd house - my father had a touchscreen computer in his office in 1978 (made by Texas Instruments).

    • Allan Gibson
      Allan Gibson 19 hari yang lalu +1

      I would list the industrial computer.
      Modern industrial processes are several orders of magnitude safer with automation simply because the number of staff have been reduced by an order of magnitude and the possibility of errors have been similarly reduced (that said, industrial automation will make exactly the same mistake with perfect repeatability).

  • Britt Ivan
    Britt Ivan 7 hari yang lalu +2

    I find it astounding that when everything was very difficult (sewing, laundry) they made very fancy stuff. Now that we have much easier processes we have sweatshirts and yoga pants. Funny why that wasn't reversed.

  • Josh Dobs
    Josh Dobs Bulan Yang lalu +11

    If you wanted to try a safer alternative to the gasoline for doing the summer dress method, you could try using "Stoddard Solvent". It's a specific blend of refined hydrocarbons that was specifically engineered for stain removal while reducing the explosive properties of general purpose gasoline. It's sometimes available as "Charcoal Barbeque Starter Fluid". TOTALLY DIFFERENT then the automotive stuff, that's the most explosive stuff, but also very effective for ink stain removable.

    • alexander mac Gillivray
      alexander mac Gillivray 23 hari yang lalu +1

      And Bernadette you can use "Stoddard Solvent" as fuel,in your wick lamps,can also be called "White Spirits".We enjoy your videos.Salutations Alexander

  • Mardy Roux
    Mardy Roux 13 hari yang lalu +1

    I just found this and enjoyed it tremendously. Many of the washing techniques are still used and even the more old fashioned ones were still pretty common when I was a child in the 1960s. I was worried when you didn't mix the chemicals into the water before putting the garment in. And I wished I could have been there to reassure you that when you are ironing a starched item, it's no problem if it has dried out. I used to have to iron all the starched clothes for the whole family when I was less than 10 years old, and I was taught to have a big bowl of water and an old handkerchief at hand, to help. As you go along you get the handkerchief wet in the bowl of water, wring it out and then place it over the part you're ironing. Then iron through the damp handkerchief. You can do this with unstarched clothes as well, but they will wrinkle up very easily so it's a waste of time really. The handkerchief also protected the clothes from getting bit of old burnt starch on them off the iron, as there would be little bits of buildup occasionally. Keeping the iron clean was important! Also, with ironing those tricky dresses with all the frills, or even just a shirt or blouse, I was always taught to iron all the small fiddly bits first and work my up to the larger panels on the garment. If I had to iron something today that's how I would do it, but I haven't picked up an iron for almost two decades at this point and have no desire to do so!

  • baby racoon 420
    baby racoon 420 Bulan Yang lalu +4

    when I was a kid (as in like 5 years ago) my mom would make that same washing soap! It was cheap and wouldn't irritate our skin, but mostly it was cheap.

  • kmburkezoo
    kmburkezoo Bulan Yang lalu +470

    I spent a year living in Mongolia and, not having a washing machine myself, doing the vast majority of my laundry by hand. I ended up doing one tumpin (large bucket) a night for several nights, because by the end of one, I was just *done*.
    It's amazing, though, how many of the old habits you discover for yourself: always wearing a cami or other easily washable underlayer; hanging up the clothes I'd worn and allowing them to air out, so they could go longer without being washed; favoring wool clothes whenever possible. The Mongols also have a habit of changing out of nice work clothes and into something more easily washable as soon as you get home, and I took that one up too.
    Can confirm, laundry by hand is a total pain. I cannot tell you how grateful that year made me for washing machines and vacuum cleaners!

    • Darling Daintyfoot
      Darling Daintyfoot Bulan Yang lalu +1

      @Ashleigh Clifford I understand that it wouldn't always work for every item of clothing, namely silk. It just seems implausible to me that anyone during this time would launder a full dress every time the hem got dirty.

    • Ashleigh Clifford
      Ashleigh Clifford Bulan Yang lalu +2

      The first thing I do when I get home, is change my clothes lol. I have house clothes and “going out” clothes. I’m a mum of 5 so I’m always cooking and cleaning and playing and the last thing I want is to ruin my good clothes. But I also do it for comfort. I also change my children’s clothes too. We have shoes for going out and shoes for around the house ( playing in the yard), also.

    • Ashleigh Clifford
      Ashleigh Clifford Bulan Yang lalu

      @Darling Daintyfoot only washing the “dirty part” could leave “water lines” and or fade. Especially if it’s a coloured item.

    • Xenobio
      Xenobio Bulan Yang lalu +5

      When I was a kid our washing machine broke and we couldn't afford a new one for some time. My mother was a stay-at-home mum and got us to help but it still took a substantial amount of time. I think having to have a job AND do hand laundry for a family of six would have been hell.

    • Darling Daintyfoot
      Darling Daintyfoot Bulan Yang lalu +2

      @Jasper Ha ha ha ha. Yeah, I looked up oxalic acid to see what stains it would be used for & apparently that's a pretty harsh chemical as well. That makes sense, that this just happened to be the day to launder it... It just threw me off since it seemed as if she had only wore it once & now needed to launder the whole thing rather than just cleanse the dirty areas & hang it up to "air out", lol. Thanks!

  • Маша Третьякевич
    Маша Третьякевич 27 hari yang lalu +6

    You know, your 1889 laundry instructions look pretty much like those of Soviet time! I remember the household instruction books of 1950-1960s, they describe pretty the same stages: stain removal with soap and sodium carbonate, blueing and starching.
    Old women in Soviet Union used to dye their white hair with that blue pigment. And starching was pretty common for tie-on collars for schooldresses.

  • Bill Moran
    Bill Moran 15 hari yang lalu +1

    I’m surprised that I actually remember many of these products and steps. I recall my grandmother talking about these processes. I’m 70 and my grandmother was born in 1865.
    If the dress starts to dry during ironing, just sprinkle very lightly with water.
    Having a water bottle close by when ironing was common.

  • A Z
    A Z 2 hari yang lalu +2

    Lovely vid! It reminds me a lot of the way my mom washes. A lot of ingredients and techniques I never stopped to observe until I left home and started noticing my clothes getting yellow and not properly clean. And oh dear God, ironing is such an art!
    Hopefully we get to know and use more of the old knowledge of Edwardians.
    Thank you!

  • Jenny Nobody
    Jenny Nobody 24 hari yang lalu +2

    You can also make washing soda by heating baking soda to a specific temp. I learned to do it in my oven when I couldn't find washing soda in the stores for my homemade laundry soap. i don't know why they stopped carrying it, but I learned stuff so thats cool

  • Kim Zachris
    Kim Zachris Bulan Yang lalu +82

    I keep thinking of Elizabeth Bennet's hem, "six inches deep in mud", and what it must have taken their servants/laundresses to get it out.
    Edited to add: It also makes it so much clearer how it would have saved a LOT of time to have removable pieces (hems, necklines, linings etc) for the areas that get the most dirty

  • Bella B
    Bella B Bulan Yang lalu +1

    I was watching this video with my grandma, and I asked about how she washed clothes growing up. I didn’t really think about it before, and I was surprised to find out that her childhood home didn’t have running water. She’s only 73 but she grew up in rural MN. She got water from the spigot outside, and she had to bathe in the kitchen in this huge pot. And she used a outhouse and everything. Nowadays my grandma lives with me and she complains about how she’s too lazy to load the dishwasher 😂

  • Nilda Edwards
    Nilda Edwards 3 jam yang lalu

    When ironing, you can put a cloth on top of the garment, to prevent damaging the lace and get easier, perhaps safer preventing damaging .

  • S.J. Shetler
    S.J. Shetler 14 hari yang lalu +1

    How timely this video is for me! I am currently writing a historical fiction novel about a laundress. As you can likely imagine, this video has given me some fantastic information to ponder as I try to piece together what it was like to be a laundress in the 1800/1900s. I especially value the links to books that you have included. Thank you!!

  • Simone Z
    Simone Z 23 hari yang lalu

    This was amazing and very interesting to watch. I would have loved to have had this video before I wrote my novel where I had one of the characters being a laundry maid during the Regency period. It might have been even more difficult over half a century before the Edwardian period, but it would have still been very useful. I did find laundry instructions for the Regency era, though not as detailed as yours are. Many thanks.

  • Jeremy Rieske
    Jeremy Rieske Bulan Yang lalu +678

    There’s actually a PSA from 1941, “More Dangerous Than Dynamite” warning housewives away from using gasoline to soak their clothes in. It’s 10 minutes long and basically extols the safety of using a dry cleaner over gasoline. Great stuff and we’ll worth a watch.

    • IVNF
      IVNF Bulan Yang lalu +1

      my household guide from the 1910s or 20s says exactly that, to launder delicate fabrics and ostrich feathers outdoors in kerosene and then to let them air dry. seems sensible enough all things considered, except I think kerosene is also cancerogenous, but then again so is Perc

    • dcy665
      dcy665 Bulan Yang lalu

      @Admiral Bob It will still burn down your house though.

    • dcy665
      dcy665 Bulan Yang lalu +2

      Dad sold/repaired home appliances. Routinely had to fix or junk dryers when they decided to use flammable liquids to clean shop towels, clothes, etc.
      Eventually he just recommended electric dryers, because they weren't guaranteed to blow up their precious gasoline vapors like gas dryers of the day.

    • Lexie Madz
      Lexie Madz Bulan Yang lalu

      @Jeremy Rieske I see I have missed out and must go find this. Rifftrax makes everything better.

    • Jeremy Rieske
      Jeremy Rieske Bulan Yang lalu

      @Shmeh Fleh Haha of course

  • Karmina Lumina
    Karmina Lumina 16 hari yang lalu +1

    Thank you for this video, quite instructive and entertaining!
    I’m currently in an unsusual way of living (like, every technology and facility cannot be taken for granted, and I’m reinventing my home and habits)...
    and am ALWAYS wondering how people did things in other times! So I’m glad to have you explaining it to me 😊

  • Haha
    Haha 26 hari yang lalu +4

    When I was a kid we didn’t have a washer or a dryer. We either went to the washateria or I literally washed my clothes in the bathtub at 7-10 years old like I was trying to make wine like stomping on grapes lmao. But I am from the US. A lot of people around the world wash their clothes in rivers that also have waste from textiles and they also drink from it. As I’ve gotten older we did end up getting the luxury of a washer and dryer but really even having a tub to wash clothes and even wash myself was a blessing. Very good video. Very time consuming and very historical even with the modern devices you used. ❤

  • Anna S
    Anna S 13 hari yang lalu +2

    Gosh. As someone who actually did washing by hand I feel like I can give you a training 😂

  • John Warr
    John Warr 25 hari yang lalu +2

    A couple of thoughts:
    Add the oxalic acid to the water and mix well before adding the garment then agitate well with a wooden spoon or something. The oxalic acid will remove iron oxide stains.
    Use a coarse cheese grater to break up the Castile soap.
    In towns soot from the many coal fires would make laundry a never ending treadmill
    Used the gasoline out in the back yard (where the mangle lives) :-)
    I remember as a child being driven through Backbarrow and the whole place was blue 🙂

  • Catherine Robilliard
    Catherine Robilliard Bulan Yang lalu +461

    I used to be a housekeeper in an Elizabethan Manor House, basic soap, soda crystals, borax and white vinegar, were essential cleaning materials for items that weren’t up to modern cleaning products. It helped that I had watched my mother clean clothes the old fashioned way; blue dye came wrapped in muslin, about the size of a peach kernel and was used on all the white products which were put first in the wash; shirts, aprons, tea towels were always soaked in starch before ironing.

    • Nah Birdie
      Nah Birdie 17 hari yang lalu

      @fazdoll thanks! ❤ that's crazy!

    • fazdoll
      fazdoll 17 hari yang lalu

      @Nah Birdie It's the concept of "like dissolves like" from high school chemistry. Water-based cleaners dissolve and remove inorganic stains, like salts, some dirt and some food. Organic cleaners will dissolve organic stains like butter, oils, grease, paint and lots of the food stains. Gasoline is organic and will take out some stains that regular soap can't.

    • Nah Birdie
      Nah Birdie 17 hari yang lalu

      Do u know why they used gasoline?

    • fazdoll
      fazdoll Bulan Yang lalu +10

      Did you ever use the gasoline? Did it work?

    • Logan
      Logan Bulan Yang lalu +50

      Found the time traveler

  • Amorky
    Amorky 25 hari yang lalu +2

    That washing soda, borax and soap mix is what I make my laundry detergent with today. Works so well

  • A Walk through Torah
    A Walk through Torah Bulan Yang lalu +2

    When my grandmother and mom did the laundry with their wringer washer, they did it outside. This was in the 50's and 60's. Then they strung the wash out over the yard.

  • Enjoy a sip of Jesus
    Enjoy a sip of Jesus 23 hari yang lalu +2

    I have a theory: if old-timey instructions don’t specify how much to put in there wouldn’t you assume a ratio of half and half bc of equality in the parts or maybe they had a common ratio that we don’t know about bc in present day usually when we mix most things it’s either a 1:1, 1:2, or 1:4 ratio

  • Dolores Diaz
    Dolores Diaz Bulan Yang lalu +3

    My great grandmother was raised during the Victorian era. When she ironed strached clothing she would keep a wet handkerchief on hand to place ontop of garment while ironing to keep from drying.

  • spikedcolor
    spikedcolor Bulan Yang lalu +707

    White lab coats are required in my field. Discovering "bluing" has saved me so much money! Used to retire old coats for turning yellow, but bluing fixes it

    • Dyana Layng
      Dyana Layng Bulan Yang lalu +4

      I used to work for a small museum; one of the techniques to remove age discolouration in delicate white clothing is to soak it in cold water, and then lay it outside. It doesn't even need to be put out in the sun (which can itself be damaging); even in the shade, the light will brighten the fabric.

    • The Bookwyrms Lair
      The Bookwyrms Lair Bulan Yang lalu +10

      @Amanda Pichon a small squirt of regular blue Dawn directly over the oil stain, lightly rubbed into the cloth, before it goes into the washing machine helps me. Not a chocolatier, but a woman with a chest large enough to act as a bib on far too many of my favorite shirts. :)

    • Amanda Pichon
      Amanda Pichon Bulan Yang lalu +5

      @Reeni Espino omg chocolate is the worst I now wear black jackets so all I have to deal with is oil stains

    • Reeni Espino
      Reeni Espino Bulan Yang lalu +10

      @Amanda Pichon i feel your pain; peroxide and sunshine are the only ways to get out chocolate! one of the few things i was grateful for in restaurant/hotel jobs was that our chef jackets were their problem to launder. They came back with brown stains still sometimes, but were overall clean.

    • mthespinner
      mthespinner Bulan Yang lalu +4

      @fireflysmelody In a 20 container (I use and old soda bottle,) I mix just enough to turn the water a very light blue. I pour it into the softener dispenser and wash as usual. My laundry is always, winter and summer, line dried to the UV rays also whiten and sterilize.

  • kiernan winchester
    kiernan winchester Bulan Yang lalu +1

    This was so fascinating, thank your for filming this process! I was honestly shocked at how many of these steps I do to hand wash my own clothing. I mostly hand wash my wool and cashmere but I've washed silk and cotton too. My mom taught me how to hand wash, and while it is nowhere near as time consuming as this whole process, I do a very abbreviated, modern version. I've even used the "blueing" technique on some white cotton button downs. Very cool to see that these techniques are true and tested throughout time.

  • Ruby Needs to Update Their Profile Pic

    This video started giving me nostalgia so hard, and I had to wrack my brain trying to remember anything about a soaked Edwardian dress from my childhood. It was a children’s book, and with some help from google I found it: Brave Irene by Kathleen T. Pellet. It’s about the daughter of an ill dress maker walking through a blizzard to deliver a dress to a duchess. This has pretty much made my day. ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🖤🤍🤎

  • Nettie Carreira
    Nettie Carreira 27 hari yang lalu +1

    I just realized some of these processes still go into my mother’s routine of hand washing when she’s trying to get rid of stains in delicate fabrics.

  • AsamiZed
    AsamiZed 28 hari yang lalu

    That was one of the most exhausting yet interesting things I've watched in a long time. Can't wait to watch more of your videos. Finding your channel has definitely improved my mood while I'm home sick.

  • Davma Theophilus
    Davma Theophilus 23 jam yang lalu

    I spent some time in central Mexico during the mid 1970s. The family had a small washing machine but said hand washing was the only way to achieve garment perfection. I hated washing denim due to the abrasive action. The concrete washboard was built into a huge open kitchen cistern.
    Love my front loading washing machine!

  • julie mccall
    julie mccall 23 hari yang lalu +1

    Whenever you mix a secondary component into a quantity of water, you should ALWAYS mix the water+secondary component together FULLY, PRIOR to immersing any fabric.
    I don’t believe you used enough of any components in your soak processes.
    That said, I was deathly afraid you were going to eat holes in your cotton when you poured the oxalic acid DIRECTLY onto the garment. OA is also used to bleach stains out of wood. It is VERY caustic. 😱😱😱