Checkmate: End of Lost Socks

Checkmate: End of Lost Socks

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Do you ever wonder where all those socks go?  Somewhere between your laundry hamper, the washing machine and the trip back to your room they have disappeared.  We can’t solve the mystery of where those socks go, but we can prevent them going astray.  Follow these tips to keep your socks two-by-two. 

When a sock is missing in action

Do not wash an unmatched sock.  Stray socks need to be quarantined until their match can be found.  When you find a lone sock, put it in a designated bag.  When your clean laundry is ready to be put away, take out any solo socks and see if there are any matches for it in the unmatched sock bag.  If you can’t find the match, add the new socks to the bag.  If you use a shared laundry room or Laundromat, make sure you take a peek at the lost and found pile each time you are there.

Pin them down

You can use safety pins to keep your matching socks together before throwing them in the laundry hamper.  The socks will be washed and dried together, and there won’t be any strays.  When washing socks, you can place them in a lingerie bag to keep them from getting lost along the way.

Lost in the shuffle

Often socks get lost when washed with larger items- caught in fitted sheets or in pant legs.  Try doing loads of just smaller items-socks, undergarments, wash cloths- to prevent your socks from being hidden in larger things.  Try counting the number of pairs of socks you put in the washer and recount when you take them out.  You’ll have a better idea where to look for the lost ones, if you know where along the way you lost them. Be sure to repeat the count when you take laundry out of the dryer and when you put it away.

Safe transport

Many socks are lost on the trip from the dryer to the drawer.  Make sure socks are placed in the middle of the laundry basket where they can’t fall out along the way.  When kids remove their socks, always have them stuff them into their shoes, where they'll stay put.


Try buying large packages of identical socks, so that when one gets lost, the remaining sock can be easily paired with another sock of the same style. You will get longer life out of your socks as the odd one gets lost or worn out.

What to do with long unmated socks

If you have given up hope of ever retrieving the mate to that lonely sock, you can put it to good use as a rag.  A damp sock on your hand is great for dusting electronics and collectables.

A few small efforts can result in fewer lost socks.  While we may never know where those socks go, we can keep from losing as many.

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© 2007 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Coach
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577
Fax: (902) 455-0553

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