This page is a collection of free projects for making handy items for the laundry room. There comes a time when worn and tired pieces need updating, but maybe you’re looking to brighten the room with cheery pops of color and fun prints.
Whatever the motivation for this creative endeavor, there’s surely something in this bunch that fits the bill for your purposes.
New Collection Update: October, 2022
For easier browsing, I organized the tutorials into the following groups:
- Laundry Bags & Hampers (includes a free vintage pattern from my personal collection)
- Ironing Board Covers
- Quick & Easy DIY Tutorials (for small pressing trays, board hangers, etc.)
I also added a tip at the bottom of the page for cleaning a clogged iron and a few bonus treats for scented sprays.
Free Sewing Projects
These projects are not only super practical and functional…many are so pretty too! I’ll be adding more goodies to this collection as I find them, enjoy!
As always here on Tipnut, all the projects below are 100% hassle-free, meaning there’s no fee to access instructions or templates, no emails to submit and no memberships to sign-up for. I focus on written/text tutorials, but some provide additional video support as well.
If that has changed since being added to this page, please let me know in the comments area below so I can remove it.
Directions: Click on images to view project pages, a new browser tab will open & save your spot here
Laundry Bags & Hampers
An assortment of solutions to help collect soiled garments throughout the week until wash day with several suitable for traveling to laundromats (or students running home). There are also a couple projects for zipped mesh bags to protect delicates/lingerie in the wash load.
Mesh – For Lingerie
Quick zipped pouches to hold delicates while in the washing machine. This protects them snagging on other items in the load & from getting tangled up in the drum. These get tossed in the dryer as well.
This is designed to rest on a door knob, collecting dirty garments until wash day. Ideal for students needing to tote back & forth to the laundromat.
How’s this for adorable! Cute little appliques are stitched across the top (free pdf template to download) & features a simple casing with drawstring (ribbon) closure. Instructions in both English and German.
An easy project that that organizes while you fold, one pocket for socks, other for undies, etc. Can be used in a variety of ways.
If you have a sorting station that’s in dire need of updating, it’s easy to sew replacements as needed. The mesh works great here since it allows items to breathe until they can be washed (less chance of mold & mildew developing).
A couple smart tweaks makes this well-suited for travel. One can hang it nicely from a clothes hanger as usual or on a hook but the opening is situated a bit lower so it’s easy to access. Once it’s full the top pulls over so nothing falls out.
This is nearly three feet tall & has a drawstring top for easy stuffing. Features a sturdy strap for toting over-the-shoulder. Fabric suggestion: medium-weight cotton duck which makes this able to stand up to road trips home & back while packed full.
Hoop Pillowcase For Nursery – No Sew
A large embroidery hoop is fitted into the opening of a vintage pillowcase. A single grommet is added so it can hang from a hook.
A sweet sack suitable to be positioned on the back of the door to collect lingerie & other delicates. Features an adjustable tie at front to open wide as you fill it then cinch it tightly closed for privacy as needed.
Each has a design difference so you know what garments go where (white handle–whites, center ruched ruffle–delicates, grey handle–darks). These were made from an old mattress cover but even an old bedsheet could be used.
- 3/4 yard Printed Cotton
- J. & P. Coats Percale Bias Trim, single fold
- Coat Hanger
- J. & P. Coats or Clark’s O.N.T. Mercerized Sewing Thread in matching colors, or Best Six Cord in white
(1/2″ allowed for seams)
- 1 piece — 18″ x 36″
- 2 pieces — 7″ x 17 1/2″
- Place 7″ x 17 1/2″ pieces (top section) wrong sides together.
- To shape top edge, place a hanger along edge, draw around outside curve and cut along outline.
- Cut one piece in half up the center and hem cut edges 1/4″ and press.
- Baste the 2 small pieces against the one whole piece, right sides together, and stitch across the top and down the sides, turn to right side and press.
- To make bag section, stitch selvage edges of 18″ x 36″ piece together (right sides together) to within 6″ from top edge and press.
- With selvage seam at center front, stitch across bottom edge, turn to right side and press.
- Gather top edge of bag section.
- Baste and stitch top section to bag section, raw edge to raw edge (right sides together).
- Baste and stitch both edges of bias trim across front 3″ from top edge and repeat this over seam line, allowing 10″ to extend at each side of center opening for ties.
- To finish ties, top stitch 10″ of bias to wrong side of each tie. Insert hanger.
Source: J. & P. Coats Gift Bazaar Sewing Suggestions (1944)
Ironing Board Covers
After prewashing materials, test for colorfastness to ensure there will be no fabric dyes bleeding through when steaming.
Use a basic pattern or the current cover to make a base, this will add some durability.
Outlines the general steps taken when no pattern is available…essentially using the board itself to determine sizing, add a complimentary fabric along the edges to make a casing, pulls tight with cord from window blinds.
I like this because you can showcase two pretty fabrics. Shows how to make a template using the flat top of the board so the fit is 100%. Cording or ribbon is run through the casing to pull tight & tie securely in place.
This upcycles an old wool blanket into a protective layer between the top cover & metal board surface.
Especially useful for crafters & seamstresses, this nifty caddy will drape over the ironing board & hold assorted tools in pockets for easy access & organization (rotary cutters, scissors, seam gauges, etc.).
Quick & Easy DIY Tutorials
Ironing Board Tray
A small little spacesaver! This is made with a wooden foldable “tv tray” where the top has been covered with fabric & batting (using small wood nails).
The base is made with a couple (large sized) place mats or plywood, an old bath towel, a couple kitchen towels & then finally finished off with a piece of pretty fabric. All secured in place with hot glue.
How To Clean A Clogged Iron
Is your steam iron acting a little sputtery and doing an inconsistent job? It’s probably just clogged with mineral and lime deposits, all it takes is a simple cleaning job to get it back to like-new shape.
Here’s how to fix it (plus a few more tips & goodies):
- Fill the tank half way with household vinegar. Top up with water.
- Turn to the hottest setting and allow the vinegar/water mix to heat. Let it sit for a couple minutes to get things good and hot.
- Take a clean towel and press it with high heat–steam on, steaming as you go. The hot vinegar will work through the mineral buildup. Continue until all liquid in the reservoir is gone.
- Fill the tank with water and allow to heat again, this time go over the towel to test the cleaning job. If things are good as new, you’re done and dump the rest (this will rinse out the vinegar as well). If not, dump and repeat the hot vinegar process above.
- If the steam spray nozzle is clogged, wipe it with a hot, wet cloth then carefully poke through the gunk with a thin needle. Make sure the appliance is unplugged before you do this. While you’re working with the hot vinegar mix, make sure to press the steam button so you get some hot vinegar flowing through the spray nozzle as well.
- Each time you’re done, wipe the warm plate with a damp cloth first soaked in water and vinegar (about a 70/30 mix is fine). This will prevent buildup from happening on the plate (from starch, etc.). One trick is to have a spray bottle with this mix handy with your supplies. Just spray this heavily on a clean cloth and apply it to give the plate a good cleaning.
- Use distilled water. This will help prevent it from getting plugged up so often.
- Before it gets to the crusty point, occasionally fill it with vinegar mix then steam a clean towel. Will prevent heavy clogging from occurring.
Removing Melted Plastic:
- Simply turn the heat on low until the plastic has softened, yet the metal plate is not too hot to burn you. Unplug and use a soft bristle brush wet in soapy water to scrub the plastic off. If the plastic won’t come off, try gently rubbing in a paste of baking soda and water. You don’t want to scratch the plate, so do this carefully.
- Homemade Lavender Water: This is lovely and will add a nice lavender scent to linens. Simply spritz a bit of the water over items when ironing.
- Aromatic Starch Recipe: Fresh pressed linens, nicely starched, and fragrance of choice wafting in the air. Nice!
- 50+ Free Clothespin Bag Patterns: Everything you could want in a clothespin pouch will be found on this page, many are super simple to make too!