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Wed Oct 24, 2012, 01:32 AM

Get your white socks white white again

I read this in the newspaper.
Boil your white socks with a few slices of lemon.
I don't recall how long it said.

Actually, it said it could return any color of clothing back to it's original color ~
but I don't see how that's possible.

But, hey ~ give it a try. Won't cost anything.

12 replies, 1968 views

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Response to left-of-center2012 (Original post)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 01:36 AM

1. I think I'd run them through the washer first

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Response to Duer 157099 (Reply #1)

Fri Oct 26, 2012, 10:52 PM

6. I think I'd run them through the washer first

Yep. Then .....

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Response to left-of-center2012 (Original post)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 06:06 AM

2. Old-timey method, getting whites whiter.

Growing up in the rural south in the '40s, I helped my grandparents on wash days. Three ten-gallon tubs lined up along the outside wall of the smoke-house, with my grandmother, sleeves rolled up, bent over the first scrubbing tub, using the lye soap she had made and her washboard. Then came two rinses in the other two tubs.

Somewhere in that process all the sheets and other "whites" went into the big cast iron pot of boiling water over the wood fire that my grandfather tended. He had a long paddle or stick that he used to stir, and to lift them out of the water when they were boiled clean and white enough to suit him, then into one of the washtubs.

I don't remember him using any lemon juice, though. In fact, I don't even rememer how it was I "helped".

When my aunt was home she provided the entertainment and encouragemrnent, belting out songs like "Pistol Packing Mama", "Oklahoma Hills Where I Was Born", and "Cocaine" (Early one morning while making my rounds, I grabbed a shot of cocaine and I shot my woman down...) made famous again much later by Johnny Cash in his Folsom Prison album. I may have those song titles wrong, but still remember the lyrics! Washday songs, probably helped make the whites even whiter.

Sorry to get so far from the subject.

Wat

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Response to watrwefitinfor (Reply #2)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 07:20 AM

3. What great memories!

Glad you shared.

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Response to watrwefitinfor (Reply #2)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 08:18 PM

4. So are you saying

that just boiling clothes will whiten them? Or was there anything else in the boiling water and you just don't know what it was?

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Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #4)

Fri Oct 26, 2012, 05:57 AM

5. I really wasn't saying that it would whiten them - just that

my folks thought it did. Whether it did or not, it seemed to be a little empirical evidence I could add to the OP. (Before I got carried away with all the childhood memories that came flooding back.)

I don't really think they put anything in the water - the only cleaning product I remember in the house was that home made lye soap. They used it for everything - laundry, dishes, floor and wall scrubbing, and I remember my aunt washing her hair in it. Later they used things like Ivory bar soap.

But I don't remember any "additives".

Wat

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Response to watrwefitinfor (Reply #5)

Sat Oct 27, 2012, 08:34 PM

7. Loved reading your memories and, being from the rural South, I'm sure my grandmother

and mother did it this way before they got the wringer washer and plumbing. I think what made their whites so much whiter than ours today is that they hung them on the line in the sun. Their clothing never went through a clothes dryer, which has a tendency to make clothes look dingy.

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Response to japple (Reply #7)

Mon Oct 21, 2013, 03:02 PM

10. Their probably is some truth to it.

One way to get a wine stain out of a white tablecloth, is pouring boiling water through the stain. I have read this hint from every source imaginable, including books on how to get stains out. I know for a fact that you can whiten white washclothes with boiling water.

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Response to watrwefitinfor (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 3, 2012, 02:29 PM

8. back in the olden days I remember my ma using a thing called 'blueing' for her whites/laundry.

If I recall, it was a little cube, blue, and you broke off pieces to put into the rinse water to sparkle up the whites.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #8)

Mon Nov 5, 2012, 10:35 PM

9. Bluing in liquid form, should still be available.

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Response to SoapBox (Reply #9)

Thu Nov 7, 2013, 12:18 AM

12. My mom used bluing for the whites in the laundry! When I was very little,

in the 1950's, she had an old-fashioned wringer washer, too. I remember her running all the clean clothes through the wringer.

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Response to left-of-center2012 (Original post)

Thu Oct 24, 2013, 01:37 PM

11. Bleach and pay attention to the percentage...

higher is better... a lot of modern bleaches are weak...

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