Toss rags in with appropriately-colored wash loads; sometimes I quarantine extra-dirty rags with the diapers, or throw out rags used with grease, paint, or the like. I throw rags away without compunction. Every time I turn around, someone is wearing out a piece of clothing around here that I cut up for rags. I do not fold or iron rags, or even bother to cut them very straight.
|rags (and hearing protection!) on the washline|
Make sure your family knows where the rags are, especially the children who probably make most of the spills anyway. Teach them to hang wet rags over the side of the hamper so they don't mildew the other dirty laundry.
Here are the three places I keep rags at my house, all handy to the kitchen and dining room where most spills happen:
1. In the pull-out just in front of my sink. I do also keep some scrubbies in there, but this is the first place my kids look for a rag to mop up a spill. The roll of paper towels is tucked away under the sink and they do have their uses: layering between berries and on plates of fried foods like bacon and fritters. I also keep a paper towel in my shortening can, for greasing cast iron and baking pans.
2. In the bathroom cabinet with the bathroom cleaning supplies. It facilitates cleaning to have the supplies in the room where they are used. We use newspaper when we clean the mirrors, not paper towels.
3. The general catch-all for rags in the hallway closet. After the other two places are supplied, any extra rags go here. I also keep large rags like old towels and sheets in the back. I use towels for big spills or to roll up hand-washed sweaters to speed up drying.
Tell me about rags and paper towels at your house. What's your system?