Shrinking Laundry Piles
- What: Collapsible Laundry Tote
- When: Birth to college
- Why: Lightweight, affordable, compact
- Where: Amazon, Target, The Container Store
We got these collapsible laundry bins for the kids on a whim after we spotted the variety of colors in a store. Our original laundry bag for the kids came from IKEA with a white stand. It worked alright for one kid, passed muster for two, and became almost pointless with three kids sharing. I had to wrestle it overfull out of the metal frame each time I wanted to do laundry. I hated getting the bag full of dirty clothes out so much I procrastinated washing their clothes. That made the problem worse, not only because it filled up even more during the delay, but also because I bought more clothes so I would have to do laundry less often.
Instead, now each kid has their own laundry bin. I adore these lightweight hampers that stand up on their own. But when they are empty, say waiting for a load to finish or when only a few clothes are dirty, they collapse into a shorter shape. For five people who live in roughly 1500 square feet, that helps so much. I can collapse the entire bin and leave it right next to the washing machine, without it hindering the opening or closing of the dryer.
The mesh sides let me and the kids see how much laundry has accumulated, so I’m never surprised to discover their empty dresser drawers and full laundry bins. The lightweight material means it doesn’t add to the burden of hauling laundry up and down the stairs and between rooms. And my kids love being able to choose their own colors.
So far, the bins have lasted several months with no signs of wear or tear. Even if I have to buy new ones each year, I love them so much and they cost very little so that I’m willing to replace them regularly as needed. They come in black, red (which looks suspiciously pink), silver, aqua, and gray online. I also found silver, aqua, pink, purple, kiwi, and white online using the search term “double folding mesh cube”. (We wouldn’t want to limit ourselves to laundry uses, now would we?)
I love that they can fold down halfway or to a flat square, unlike circular or other pop up hampers. I can also collapse it much less time than it takes me to fold my laundry bags, and the firm shape can carry folded clothes as well as the pile of dirty clothes. They can probably carry other things as well, but luckily for me, my children haven’t tried to climb into them and carry each other around. Yet.