STONEGABLE LAUNDRY SOAP

One of life’s simple pleasures is the smell of fresh laundry! It is the smell of clean.
I have been so intrigued with all the homemade laundry soap recipes floating around the internet, I just had to try making it myself!
This laundry soap smells WONDERFUL! And I have been using it for months with great results…

It is very economical too! Just 2-3 TBS in the tub of your washer is all that is needed for a nice clean load of laundry! Safe for HE washers, too!

StoneGable Laundry Soap 
1~ 4lb 12 oz box of Borax
1~ 4 lb box of Arm And Hammer Baking Soda
1~ 3 lb 7 oz box of Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda
1~ 3lb  container Oxy Clean
4 bars Fels Naptha Soap, grated
2 containers Downy Un Stopables 
Mix all the ingredients in a large heavy duty garbage bag. Just close the bag securely and juggle back and forth until completely mixed.  Scoop out into containers.
This recipes makes a huge amount of laundry soap!
I put some of the soap in a big glass jar and made a pretty label for it.

 I am so fond of bees and their symbol of “industry” that I found a free printable graphic from  The Graphic Fairy and made it into a label.

An old silver serving piece becomes a scoop! Pretty little thing like this make mundane jobs…like laundry… much more enjoyable… I call them “gracenotes”!
 Gotta go… I ‘m running out to hang a load of laundry outside… how fun!
I love when a post generates questions and comments! Here are a few extra notes about the Laundry Soap…
~ StoneGable Laundry Soap is safe for HE washers. Just add the laundry soap into the tub of the washer along with the clothes. Do not put in the liquid soap dispenser.
~I am not sure how it will work on sensitive skin. “Sensitive skin” is very relative. You might have to just give it a try. If it does not work for you it will make a lovely gift.
~ Downy Unstopables are scent boosters and not a fabric softener. 
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Comments

  1. says

    I made this recipe several months ago and just used my last scoop this week. I believe mine just called for 3 bars of the Fels Naptha. I wasn’t crazy about the fragrance of that soap, so I added some essential oil to it. It smelled so fresh. I will make it again, but it’s still Gain for husband! BTW….I just told my DIL this week that I love to do laundry…..she thinks I’m daffy!

  2. says

    Yvonne,
    I too have been using the homemade laundry soap and love it. My son loved the smell and took some home with him. He loves it too. My reciepe did not have the unstopables in it. I will try that next time. I read a quarter cup vinegar in the rinse. This works great and there is no smell from it.
    Have a great weekend.
    Donna

    • says

      I tweaked the recipe. I used extra fels naphta because it is a great heavy duty cleaner. I also added the unstopables because I love great smelling laundry. The laundry soap works great and smells so wonderful!

  3. says

    Going to have to try it! This is a different recipe than what I have seen and I like the sound of this recipe! Thanks for sharing, I will try this now.

  4. says

    Wow Ivonne, you have been a busy bee yourself! I’m loving this home made laundry soap and yeah, nothing more gratifying than the smell of fresh washed cloths. I specially love my clean sheets, I love to change them, wish I could do that everyday, like Jackeline Kennedy used to…they say. Thank you for the recipe, I like it too! Have a great weekend dear Ivonne…see you Monday!
    FABBY

  5. Anonymous says

    Hi Yvonne,
    I just recently found your blog and I love, Love, LOVE it!!! It’s so beautifully laid out and so uplifting and inspiring! I’m going to try this laundry detergent recipe as soon as I can. I love all things beautiful and this just looks so fun to make and use not to mention how sweet my laundry will smell, so thank you! (Just a note: I just made your salt scrub and left you a comment about mine not looking quite like yours…any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Yvonne. Kim

  6. says

    Wow Yvonne you make this sound wonderful. I may try the recipe cut i half do you think that would work out okay?

    I am having a $100 Gift Card Giveaway from Soft Surroundings If you would like to enter.

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karen

    • Anonymous says

      I use ZOTE in the recipe I have too. It looked really pretty with the original recipe that called for Purex Crystals which was purple. Then I found Unstoppables and my second batch looks so “Pinkalicious” as my daughter would say. I’m almost done with my second batch that I mixed last Sept. My first batch lasted over a year. I think this time around I’m finding more excuses to do laundry.

  7. shannon says

    I was wondering the same thing as Anonymous about using it with an HE washer. Love your blog by the way.

  8. says

    Yvonne, I loved your words “An old silver serving piece becomes a scoop! Pretty little thing like this make mundane jobs…like laundry… much more enjoyable… I call them “gracenotes”!”. I’m going to have to remember “gracenotes”. It sounds like we are living in a gentler more graceful time even though so much is swirling around us. Thank you!

  9. says

    What a great idea Yvonne and so beautifully presented in the big wide jar. I miss being able to hang my laundry out to dry in the sun (not allowed where we live now) as we did when we lived in the islands. It makes everything smell so fresh.
    Sam

  10. says

    I have been wanting to try this forever. I don’t know what the Downy Un Stoppables is though. I will have to look. I am assuming it is a dry product rather than a liquid one. Thanks for the recipe- xo Diana

  11. says

    I’ve been wanting a homemade laundry soap but all the ones I have seen involve melting the soap, which I have tried but I don’t think the proportions were correct as I ended up having a thick, THICK sludge. This one I think I can do and add some vinegar (with lavender essential oil added) to ensure that it goes down the spout of my front-loading washer. Thank you Yvonne!

  12. says

    Yvonne this recipe sounds wonderful but I use a liquid, in fact I put my liquid soap in a big jar drink dispenser. I am like you, I want it to be pretty too. I bet your laundry smells divine! Nothing like clean, sweet smelling laundry. If you feel industrious, could you make a liquid detergent too!! xo Kathysue

  13. says

    Not only is it the prettiest laundry soap container I’ve ever seen, it’s the prettiest laundry soap I’ve ever seen!! I love this idea – oh, and thanks for letting us know it’s good for HE washers too.

    :)
    ButterYum
    PS – you might like to know there’s a typo in your first sentence – you typed bad instead of bag. Just thought I’d mention it – I miss my own typos all the time, which drives me nuts.

  14. Anonymous says

    I’ve been using this homemade recipe (without the Downy)for a couple months & love it !! Can’t wait to add some scent crystals, I love Purex Complete Crystals. I have a front load washer and put the detergent into the dispenser on top, just sliding the bar to choose powder rather than liquid & no problems, works well in cold water too. I too use white vinegar as a softener/ static remover, absolutely no smell and keeps clothes bright and aids in removing detergents (often cause of dingy whites, detergent buildup, and I always thought it was my well water)

  15. says

    Hi Yvonne! I found this recipe without the Downy on Pinterest. I just LOVE IT! I think it does require a little more than a tablespoon, which is what the original directions call for. I might use a bit too much though. Three might be just right for a large load. It does smell heavenly clean. I will look into the Downy Unstopables.
    Yvonne, “gracenotes” is such a wonderful expression for the sweet little things ~ I will remember that {smiling as I type now} Thank you!
    I also love your milk and cookies breakfast! Perfect for me too!
    *Happy belated Easter to you as well*
    We rejoice in His Gift every day!
    *Maria

  16. says

    I can not wait to try this recipe. I have never heard Fels Naptha Soap or the Downy Un Stopables – do you get them on the laundry aisle of the grocery i assume??
    I have the front load washer and dryer – and hate them! My washer always has a stinky smell and have tried so many ways to get rid of that smell. I switched from Tide to Mrs Meyers and it has helped some. I wonder if this recipe will help?? Anyone who has had this problem and solved it pls email me at justspiffit@gmail.com
    Thanks for the great post today!!

    • Anonymous says

      I leave my washer open when I am not using it. I have well water, so no chlorine tends to harbor some smells. My owner’s manual had a sanitize feature, I’ve never had to try it.

    • Anonymous says

      I also leave my door cracked to allow it to dry out between uses. The other thing I do is wipe the inside of the rubber boot in the front with bleach to kill the molds and mildews that grow because of the rubber staying damp. That eliminates the odors coming from that.

  17. Anonymous says

    Like “all things Yvonne”, even your laundry soap looks lovely and inviting!! And, like your other recipes, I can’t wait to try it — crazy. So glad you’re back! You’re so gifted! Kerry

  18. says

    Yvonne, only you would come up with a beautiful way to do laundry! The pretty homemade detergent in such a pretty jar and a pretty scoop. It just has to smell as lovely as it looks. Love you label too. Have a great Sunday.

    ~Emily
    the French Hutch

  19. says

    Yvonne, I have got to try this. I am tired of paying huge amounts for laundry detergent and then they don’t even clean that well. I have never heard of the Downey unstoppables, but hopefully will find them. Beautiful pictures.

  20. says

    Yvonne, this recipe will be better than the previous one I made because of the Oxy and the Downy Unstoppables. I made a batch yesterday for my daughter. She LOVES it! I will never use a commercially made laundry detergent again. Thank you for sharing this wonderfully scented, hard working recipe.

  21. Lori says

    Looking so forward to making this.I found all of the ingredients as well as a large glass container with lid at our local Wal-Mart. Blessings for a beautiful day !!!!!

  22. says

    Did you use two different fragrances of unstoppables? I see lavender and a yellow color in the mix. I saw one labeled “fresh” and one was lavender. I love the idea of mixing my own laundry detergent. Thanks,

  23. Anonymous says

    Yvonne, I’m wondering the same thing as Patty (above) about the UnStopables…I’m guessing that you used the lavendar scent and the yellow is the Fels Naptha soap (grated). Another question, did you use the regular Oxyclean or the ‘perfume free/dye free’ version? I thought this might matter since you’re adding a scent with the unstopables. Can’t wait to try this!

  24. says

    Hi Yvonne!
    I just made this and I love it! Very nice scent. (I used the lavender Downy Unstoppables.) Just in case other readers live in my area (northeast GA): WalMart had all the ingredients except the Borax and the Arm and Hammer Super Washing Soda. They normally carry both, but were out of stock so I found both at Publix. I have a little over $35 in ingredients, but it made a TON!! Thanks for sharing. This was a fun, practical and thrifty project!

  25. Ann says

    Yvonne,

    I’m going to make this tomarrow and I can’t wait!!! Do you use fabric softener as well as the detergent?

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog and so glad you’re back. You are truly a blessed and talented woman of God.

  26. says

    So I found this on pintrest today. It inspired me to make it. I ordered everything I needed from sopa.com witha 20% off coupon for the first order and free shipping. I have baking soda at home so I didn’t need that. I couldn’t find Fels Naptha Soap. But I did find it on ebay pre shredded for $20 for 4 bars. Saves time. So now I just need an awsome big jar and a fancie scoop. Can’t wait to try it. So for anyone that is counting I think I just payed $60 for laundry soap! I hope it is worth it because I can normaly get 120 loads out of a 186oz liquid soap form costco for $25.

    • says

      Shelli.. $20 for 4 bars grated bars of the Fels Naptha was no bargain… Fels Naptha is only $1 a bar and only takes 3 minutes at the most to grate. The person selling it on Ebay is ripping people off!!!

    • Anonymous says

      I agree with Theresa!!! You can buy Fels Naphtha at Walmart for 97¢ each. I use my salad shooter or food processor to grate the bars and doesn’t take long at all. At $60, that is about 5 years of laundry soap :(

  27. says

    SOOOO glad to have found you blog today! I already adore it! I have been making my own detergent for awhile now. Similar to yours except mine does not include the oxy clean, or downy. And a lesser amount of the baking soda. Do you notice any fading in your clothes? If I try your recipe, I will use the “Green Works” natural oxie clean. Have you ever tried that?

  28. Mrs Azouz says

    I am loving your blog! I am new to DIY projects so I am sorry if this is an obvious question, How did you apply your label to your laundry jar? I will definitely be using this laundry soap along with your labels.

  29. Anonymous says

    I’ve made the homemade laundry soap as a liquid and love the idea and look of this powdered soap. Just the look of it makes you want to make it! Have you tried making any homemade liquid fabric softener? Thanks for sharing your recipe! Diane

  30. Julie says

    I’m new to making my own laundry soap… and I love how this recipe looks compared to others.. but I wonder if using Purex crystals instead of the unstoppables would work. They smell great, they are a touch cheaper AND they are a fabric softner! What do you think??
    THANKS!!

  31. says

    I just made this myself and used Purex instead of the Downy Unstoppables to save some money. It still smells very nice and I can’t wait try it! I dd find all the ingredients at Wal-mart.

  32. says

    I know this is much later than your original posting. Been following your blog for a while but haven’t ever posted. I love your posts btw. Your china makes me jealous :D
    I just finally finished my bought laundry detergent today after a 3 day run of laundry. (somehow every towel I owned was dirty by the time i had time to do laundry gah!) So I went and bought everything to make this today. Do you know about how long it lasts for a full recipe?

  33. Yoly from Miami says

    Very glad to see that you’re back. I would check the blog periodically hoping that you would come back and I’m excited to see all the new posts. I think Ricky Ricardo would say “Yoly you have a lot of reading to do” but it reading I’m going to enjoy.

    Loved this post and will be trying to make my own batch soon.

    Thanks.

    Yoly

  34. says

    Just make this and love it! The smell is wonderful! I’ve been making a liquid detergent for awhile, but it didn’t have the nice fresh scent this has. It is also much easier to make than the liquid. Didn’t add the baking soda, as I wasn’t sure what its purpose is. Turned out great! Thanks, Laurie

  35. says

    I adore this recipe! I cut it in half though for storage reasons. I’ve been using it for over a month now with wonderful results. For those who ask about sensitive skin, My son will break out with nasty whelps if I use the “wrong” soap and has had no bad reactions with this at all. And for those of you having trouble finding Fels Naptha, did too at first, mostly because I had never heard of it, but lo and behold it was right in the detergent isle at Walmart along with all the other things called for less than a dollar a bar. to you who paid $20 for 4 pre shredded bars on ebay, I’m sad to say you paid $16 for the shredding! Maybe I should start selling on ebay!! I also use a quarter cup of white vinegar for the fabric softener. I have found perfection! and a tip for Walmart shoppers, if you go to the pool supply section you can get a 12 pound bag of baking soda for $7! Mine even had a $3 dollar coupon attached!

  36. says

    Just found this recipe for the Laundry Soap but not being from USA it is difficult to know what to substitute…
    Items like Oxy clean, Fels Naptha Soap & Downy Un Stopables ..what are they ?

  37. says

    I’d feel like I was sort of going “back to the prairie”, making this, but with all the rave reviews, I’ve added it to the “to do” list! Just as long as I dont need a rock and wash board, down by the creek, everything should be fine!
    I’m new here and your blog is beautiful!
    Best to you,
    Barbara

  38. says

    Appreciate DawnMarie coming back to discuss “free and clear” issues with sensitive skin. I have to use no perfume soaps too… I wish I could try this!!

  39. says

    I have been making my own laundry detergent this was for a couple of years now, and I have only added on ingredient, that has made a big difference, and that is either epsom salt or kosher salt. This acts as a water softener and allows your detergent to do a better job of cleaning and clothes come out of the washer soft! I live in Phoenix, AZ the capital of hard water cities, and this has made all the difference in the world. Then i spritz vinegar onto a wash cloth and throw it in the dryer. I’ve never added Downy Unstoppable, but I will try it! Judy

  40. Anonymous says

    Just wanted to add that I found this recipe to make approx. 3.75 gallons, making it about 7 cents per load if using 2 Tbsp.

    My costs for ingredients were:

    $5 for 4 bars Fels Naptha
    $3.50 3# Oxi Clean (sun brand)
    $3 4# Baking Soda
    $3 Washing Soda
    $4 Borax
    $14 Downy Unstopables

  41. says

    I love this idea as Fels Naptha, Oxi Clean, Baking Soda and Borax are all soaps that wash out of your clothing. A detergent, however is a stronger chemical that coats your clothing and doesn’t wash out. So, for that reason if I made this, I would ditch the Downey product (because that is the type of product/chemical you are trying to avoid in making your own laundry soap). If you want some scent in your laundry, you can put 10-20 drops of essential oil directly into your wash load. BUT, it’s never going to be as strong a smell as Tide, Cheer, Downey, etc because they are strong, harsh chemicals that coat your clothing reducing their absorbency and fire resistance. I have been using the Smart Klean Laundry Ball and I have grown to enjoy laundry that doesn’t smell like harsh chemicals.

  42. Anonymous says

    I started using this today. LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!!! Thank you. Can’t wait till I can hang clothes out on the line to dry, but today isn’t the day unfortunately. Thanks again!!

  43. Anonymous says

    I love this laundry soap. I’ve made two batches since I discovered this recipe! Everyone who I have shared it with loves it as well… Thanks. Now I can’t wait to try the drawer liners!! You are so fun!!!

  44. Susan says

    My son has sensotive skin issues that even “Free and Clear” detergents cause problems for him. I recently made the liquid version similiar to this using Lever 2000 instead of Fels Naptha. I really did not know what to expect – amazingly the clothes are “old soft t-shirt soft” and no more issues with itchy skin. We are beyond delighted with the results.

  45. says

    Just mixed this up tonight. I love the smell and it looks so pretty in the big glass jar I got at WalMart. Instead of a lovely antique spoon like yours, I’m using a cute little Polish pottery spoon I picked up in Poland. So fun. Now I can hardly wait for tomorrow morning.. we’re washing our sheets! Thanks for inspiring us with all your great ideas. :) Now I’m off to design a label.. (yes, I admit it, I’m shamelessly copying you on this one! Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery?)

  46. Anonymous says

    I cannot find tram and hammer super washing soda ANYWHERE! I checked Walmart, Target and my albertsons grocery store! Any ideas where I can find it? Or A substitute?

  47. Janet Chasteen says

    This recipe is awesome! I made it in May of 2012 for my family of 6 and now it is December and I made it again today. Lasts a long time is a huge understatement!!! I hope you dont mind me sharing this recipe and link on my facebook. Thanks so so very much for this recipe. Its amazing!

  48. Anonymous says

    It doesn’t create bubbles, so how do you know that you’ve added enough? I have a large capacity washer and usually add detergent until it foams.

    • Anonymous says

      It is a misconception that in order for your clothes to get clean, the soap must suds! It doesn’t!! That is why people use so much detergent. With this homemade soap, you should only use 2-3 T. for a large load.

  49. Anonymous says

    I have made this twice, the first batch lasted me 3 months! This second time I added an extra bar of the soap. Found all the ingredients at Walmart. Love it!

  50. Anonymous says

    Just made my first batch tonight and cant wait to use it. Found all the ingredents at my local WalMart. Thank’s for the recipe.

  51. says

    I have made a recipe very similar to this one several months ago which we love but I use zote soap instead of the fels because of all the chemicals in fels compared to zote. I did some research online about them. Zote can be a bit harder to find but worth it. I found it at K-Mart.

  52. Anonymous says

    I made this tonight and tried it on my sons soiled sheets and pajamas – one wash, 3 TBS of detergent and every garment came out smelling fresh! No second wash, no extra vinegar, no second cup of detergent – one shot and it was complete. I am sold! Thanks for the amazing recipe!

  53. says

    I have tried this recipe for laundry soap before and loved it. I am now buying liquid soap again but really miss using this soap. I think I’m heading back to the store and gather my supplies again and remake it. My first batch lasted me approx.6 months and cost me $20. Now I am spending $8 on liquid soap and it lasts about 2-3 wks. This recipe for soap is very ecconomical and fun to make and the scent is very nice too! Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  54. says

    Thank you Yvonne for posting this, I’m wondering where you found your ingredients for this recipe? I’d love to make it but not sure where I would even begin to look for it and especially in such large amounts.
    I have recently retired after 30 years in the medical profession so I am now “Chief Laundress” in the house(something my husband had to do).
    Now I’m enjoying domestic bliss for the first time in years, I have even started hanging the sheets out to dry in the sunshine so this is a the next step to making it even better!
    Thank you again,
    Terry
    PS love your blog, its my “email go to place first off” to start the day!

  55. Anonymous says

    One Quick questions can we use any type of soap or only the kind listed in the ingredients. Thank you so much for your help.

  56. says

    Love those pictures…. Beautiful :) I have only done laundry with my baking soda, washing soda, soap mix twice so far, but so far my clothes and linens have come out clean, odorless, and not too stiff :)

  57. Anonymous says

    This is EXACTLY what my mix looks like – right down to the apothecary jar (bought at WalMart $9.97 – 2 lb size). EXCEPT for the label!! How, please, can I make this graphic label for my jar? I do LOVE it!! I just made my soap mix today while I was hunkered down during Pittsburgh’s winter storm! My laundry came out sparkling clean and smelling beautiful – as does my house!!

  58. says

    Here’s a tip. I split my batch: one part with Purex crystals and one part without them. Many polar fleece and athletic tech cloth garments should be laundered without fabric softener. I love that this recipe is so easy and economical. I spend $40 a year ( two batches) instead of $40 per month now! Clothes are clean, clean, clean! And no irritation to my husbands very sensitive skin! Happy dancing!

  59. says

    I have made a laundry detergent similar to this for years. The hard part is hand grating the soaps. I love the scent of the Fels Naptha. It smells so clean. I am going to try yours next time. Didn’t read all the multitudinous comments; you have quite a following! So I don’t know if anyone mentioned this or not, but I use a cookie jar like yours and a pretty teacup for my dipper. It looks beautiful through the glass walls of the cookie jar.

  60. Donna says

    Yvonne, I read your blog today and went out right away to pick up all of the ingredients. How does one grate a Fels Naptha bar? Thank you!

  61. says

    Yvonne, I would like to print a label like you did. When I click on your Graphics Fairy link, it takes me to the artwork. There is a link to the right of the artwork for the full size PDF. That artwork looks huge, and I see no way to re size it. I would also like to do some of my own printing on the label. Would you be able to tell all of us how to get the correct sized artwork, and how to add our own unique printing to the top of it, like you did? Also, did you print on plain paper, or use round labels on sheets. If you did, what size did you use. Thank you.

  62. says

    I am recently retired and new to all the DIY household cleaning recipes since I am on a strict budget! I made up a batch of this laundry detergent and LOVE IT!! Our clothes come out of the dryer much softer than when using commercial laundry detergent, and I love the fact that it lasts so long! Going to make up a homemade batch of scented crystals in place of the expensive Gain/Purex crystals and put that mixture directly in with the homemade laundry soap mixture!

    Gini Dryden

  63. Anonymous says

    I have using this recipe for laundry soap for a few a years now and i love it, except i use purex crystals instead of the unstoppable stuff. Its perfect for my husband and kids with sensitive skin and cleans my laundry SOO well. My husband works in the oil field and his clothes are NASTY this laundry soap cleans his work clothes so well too. ( and i also hang my clothes on a line in the summer ;-) )

  64. Anonymous says

    I cannot find the Fals Napthia bar soap, or Zote for that matter, here in Canada or the Arm & Hammer Washing Soda. Is this only available in the US? Can I use a substitute?

  65. Dorothy says

    Thank you for posting the recipe. I made the soap today and it worked like a charm for both hand wash and machine wash. It’s way better than melting grated fels naphtha and end up with lumpy liquid soap.

  66. Diane Koschke says

    I can’t wait to try this DIY Laundry soap recipe. I have been hearing about it for some time now… Plan on making it today & give my boys something to do, with letting them grate the fels naptha !!
    Thank you for posting your recipe :)

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