Author Topic: When to Replace Linens?  (Read 1842 times)

warehouse

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When to Replace Linens?
« on: March 18, 2018, 09:51:53 AM »
How often do you replace linens?

I have many serviceable bath and kitchen towels that are a bit ugly, stained, or perhaps fraying, etc. but they still do the job. Same with a few rugs around the house. I have a hard time just throwing them away and replacing but I am beginning to think they are giving an overall ratty feeling to my already old house.

I think the average age of my bath towels is 10 years and my kitchen towels at least 5, though I know I still have a few tattered ones I received for my wedding shower 13 years ago!

My kitchen rugs are actually cushioned mats to make cooking more comfortable. These are two years old but the khaki color is rubbing off on the corners and showing the foam inside. Again, completely serviceable but they don't look nice anymore.
https://www.kohls.com/product/prd-2825059/food-network-ultra-comfort-tavertine-lattice-kitchen-mat.jsp?prdPV=12

What's a mustachian to do?

bridget

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2018, 10:07:24 AM »
I have a few nice looking towels in the public areas of my house (the ones that hang where guests see them/use them).

Stained but in tact towels - put under the sink or somewhere not on ďdisplayĒ for functional but non-display use (like backup towels on laundry day, or wiping up the big spill on the floor). Ratty towels can get cut up into little pieces and turn into washcloths and rags for cleaning/polishing.

Carrie

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2018, 10:15:00 AM »
You can donate old ratty and frayed towels to an animal shelter. I finally, after using towels from our wedding 20+ yrs ago, bought a set of 4 for the guest bath, a set of 4 for our bath. All white, so can be bleached if needed. The kids still use the old towels, but I have to say, thick new towels are awesome. I bought one set from a home discounter, so they're some designer brand but I got them for $6/ea. The other set I used coupons at bed bath & beyond.

meghan88

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2018, 10:52:54 AM »
What bridget and Carrie said.

And, washing, rather than use, is what destroys fabrics.  Keep the nice new stuff for the guest areas.  Use the ratty stuff until you can't stand it anymore.  Rather than washing towels after each use, hang in the sun to dry and deodorize / kill bacteria.

Maybe throw a washable Ikea cotton rug over the comfy foam mats when you have company?  Or ditch the foam mats entirely.  Unless you are standing for hours on end, do you really need them?  The less stuff you have, the less stuff that will wear through.

Dicey

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2018, 10:56:56 AM »
1. If you buy new towels (including dish towels), prolong their life by zig-sagging all four sides. They don't make'em like they used to.*
2. Costco and Home Goods are my favorite sources.
3. Put pretty towels on the hanging bars and don't use them*. It keeps the bathroom looking presentable with zero effort.
4. Install hooks for your everyday towels so they are easy to grab when exiting the shower.
5. Sew any holes or ravels right away. If you did step 1, this won't happen often.
6. Rit dye is your friend. Stuff works great. Last year, I dyed a bunch of napkins for an event. On impulse, I threw some old washcloths in the wash with the freshly dyed napkins. Enough color transferred that the washcloths surprisingly new and it cost me nothing extra!
7. You can make a million things with old towels. Pinterest and Google are your friends.
8. Donate to a shelter that provides showers for humans.
9. If they're too far gone for that, the animal shelter is also a good suggestion.

*I still use the Charisma towels that I bought for my first apartment, in about 1984 (!). They're still nice and thick, because they did nothing but look pretty on a towel bar for most of a decade.

Linea_Norway

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2018, 11:10:45 AM »
Buy a few new onces when you ever sell your house and have viewings. Having a new bedsheet and a nice new towel in your bathroom makes your house look better and is a cheap investment.

We bought a cabin in 2007 and are using up our old towels there, as well as the 25 year old dishes from my student time.

You could also turn old towels into smaller cleaning rags. We keep old bedsheets in the garage for when we have painting projects and need to cover something, like a floor. We use old t-shirts for rags to clean bicycle parts.

If you don't feel happy using old towels, then just buy a couple of new ones, on sale. It is not a big splurge. Don't feel bad about it.

Whenever I stay at my inlaw's house, I often get presented with an thin, old bath towel and I hate it. I like a towel to be thick and fluffy. At our cabin I can live with using our own old towels.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2018, 11:12:21 AM by Linda_Norway »

Cranky

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2018, 11:29:03 AM »
I buy a couple of "nice" towels every few years, and bump the old towels down the line - there's some that are back up towels, and some that are cleaning towels, and some that get cut up for rags. (I buy nice big towels at Sams for like $8/each, so they aren't a huge investment.)

We use a million dishtowels, so I don't think I ever get rid of those!

Sheets - they last about 10 years or so.

iris lily

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2018, 11:44:34 AM »
Me. Send used towels to me.

I have had dogs for 25 years, most of them rescue dogs. Many have poor bathroom habits. Many ďmarkĒ their territory and I jave to protect my upholstered furniture. Some are incontinent.

I got my last batch of good dog towels from the dumpster right by the dog shelter down the block. They had thrown away two dozen towels in anticipation of moving.  I grabbed them, cut most in half and sewed the ends to keep them from unraveling. We ended up with enough absorbent bedding for  our two houses with these towels and existing co forters I also cut ip and sewed.

Our little old senior citizen lady dog is incontient when sleeping and she goes through 6 pieces of bedding each day. She comes and gets me when her towels are wet so that I can ch age them. Spoiled much..


MayDay

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2018, 01:07:44 PM »
We have a mix of old ratty ones and newer ones for guests.

I get a few new ones as needed so we have ~4 presentable ones.

My kitchen towels are pretty much all ratty though. I'm ok with that.


Dragonswan

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2018, 08:34:37 AM »
Yep, I too have guest towels.  But I'm also not opposed to one or two new towels every few years and recycling the oldest/rattiest couple of towels for cleaning purposes.  For the kitchen towels, go to the dollar store and get a few.  They look great for about a year and then you can use them for bathroom cleaning and go out and get some more to look and feel nice in the kitchen.  I mean even a mustachian won't begrudge $6-10 a year for such an expenditure.

Awesomeness

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2018, 11:20:17 AM »
I am a bit of a linen nut. Also Iím an old school housewife, homemaker, domesticated or whatever they call it. Iím single now but my home is still a priority for me.  I love good bed linens but my habits are cheap or free.  I buy clearance items in the store, pick what I want, then get extra to sell on eBay.  Makes my stuff free. Itís always name brand, think pottery barn, ikea, target stuff so itís easily marketed.  And when Iím bored with it, on eBay it goes and I get my money back.  Just sold a six year old pottery barn quilt for 175$ I paid under a hundred and that was nuts but it was beautiful.  Crazy! Rarely do I replace something of mine because it worn. My kids would sometimes destroy their linens so they usually got trashed or donated when they didnít meet my standards.  I tended to buy them Costco blankets. A super soft blanket is under 20$. IKEA has a great ding and dent room.  They pile open linens into a cart and sell the whole cart for 60$. Itís like Christmas!  Last time I got 7 awesome bath towels, queen sheets and pillow cases. Sold the rest. My stuff was free and I made money.


I will say I visited family that had plenty of money but they were cheap.  Bath towels were bleached stained and just plain ugly, clean and soft but seriously the house was full of guests. Made you feel unimportant.  My towels for my dogs were in better shape lol. I accept the fact that Iím naturally organized and good at that stuff but not everyone is. When people stay with me or help me move they complement my stuff. I often tell them where I shop or where I got my mattress etc.

I donít have a lot of things and my house is small but what I have is in good shape. I wouldnít like ratty kitchen stuff unless itís for cleaning. Even if it still had life,  Itís so easily replaced for so little and has a big impact.  Iím starting to do the same with my clothes. If it doesnít fit me well or is looking worn Iíll donate.   Quality over quantity.

Rosy

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2018, 06:33:01 PM »
1. Stained, beyond repair? - goes into the utility room.
2. Frayed - if it is still fine otherwise - I'll attempt a rescue.
3. Wore out - trash it, car towel, take the cat to the vet towel.

How long I've had them doesn't matter, it is the condition that counts.
I do love fine linens, so I usually buy mine at TJMaxx or Home Goods. They tend to have good quality at a discount.

Admittedly, I have more than enough kitchen towels and ratty is not allowed in my kitchen. In fact, I have seasonal dish towels.
Bath towels - well, we have only one bathroom, so no guest towel fanciness, but rather nice, good quality towels for us. I tend to buy a new set every two-three years, but I rotate all five or six of my towel sets so they will last longer.

For me, the choice is to have something nice or nothing at all.
Rugs are luxuries - so my motto is, get something nice or let it be.

partgypsy

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Re: When to Replace Linens?
« Reply #12 on: March 20, 2018, 10:43:12 AM »
I am a bit of a linen nut. Also Iím an old school housewife, homemaker, domesticated or whatever they call it. Iím single now but my home is still a priority for me.  I love good bed linens but my habits are cheap or free.  I buy clearance items in the store, pick what I want, then get extra to sell on eBay.  Makes my stuff free. Itís always name brand, think pottery barn, ikea, target stuff so itís easily marketed.  And when Iím bored with it, on eBay it goes and I get my money back.  Just sold a six year old pottery barn quilt for 175$ I paid under a hundred and that was nuts but it was beautiful.  Crazy! Rarely do I replace something of mine because it worn. My kids would sometimes destroy their linens so they usually got trashed or donated when they didnít meet my standards.  I tended to buy them Costco blankets. A super soft blanket is under 20$. IKEA has a great ding and dent room.  They pile open linens into a cart and sell the whole cart for 60$. Itís like Christmas!  Last time I got 7 awesome bath towels, queen sheets and pillow cases. Sold the rest. My stuff was free and I made money.


I will say I visited family that had plenty of money but they were cheap.  Bath towels were bleached stained and just plain ugly, clean and soft but seriously the house was full of guests. Made you feel unimportant.  My towels for my dogs were in better shape lol. I accept the fact that Iím naturally organized and good at that stuff but not everyone is. When people stay with me or help me move they complement my stuff. I often tell them where I shop or where I got my mattress etc.

I donít have a lot of things and my house is small but what I have is in good shape. I wouldnít like ratty kitchen stuff unless itís for cleaning. Even if it still had life,  Itís so easily replaced for so little and has a big impact.  Iím starting to do the same with my clothes. If it doesnít fit me well or is looking worn Iíll donate.   Quality over quantity.

I'm this way too. Life is too short to use ripped, stained, rough or ugly towels or dish towels. I make those into rags for cleaning. Even if you go crazy, spending $100 a year for new linens is not a huge amount of money in the scheme of things, for the amount of pleasure (at least for me) it gives. Just remember to use the rags for real cleaning, so the tea towels, etc are for light use and don't get stained.