7 Old-Fashioned Tasks You Should Still Be Doing.
It’s hard to imagine 100 years ago. I mean, a hundred years ago, people were going to the movies to watch a silent film. A hundred years ago, The Eiffel Tower was THE tallest structure in the world. Back then Lincoln Logs were the toy of choice. However, there are homemaking tasks that were done 100 years ago that are still done now. Or at least, should be done now, if you want to live frugally. Here are 7 Tasks Homemakers Did 100 Years Ago That You Need to Do!
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Sometimes as things change, other things get set aside. Some of that is okay and is a positive result of progress and innovation, like using a vacuum instead of a broom. But other things, like budgeting, are critically important to having healthy finances and should never be put aside, no matter how much things change. So let’s take a look at the 7 tasks homemakers did 100 years ago and see if you’re still doing them too!
7 Tasks Homemakers Did 100 Years Ago That You Need to Do
1. Homemakers Grocery Shopped
Okay, let’s be honest, they probably didn’t grocery shop like we do today. Most homemakers today can go to the store and buy whatever they need. Homemakers of the early 1900s didn’t do a whole lot of shopping, they tried to barter or make whatever they could. Plus, prices were very different back then. In 1919, you could walk into a grocery store and buy eggs for 63 cents. However, it’s important to note that the average household only made around $1500 a year.
But still, homemakers got food ingredients, one way or another. You’d never find a household that ate out 90% of the time back then!
2. Homemakers Had Gardens
100 years ago, homemakers gardened because they needed to feed their families. Gardens were a huge part of how people fed their families year round. Big grocery items didn’t start hitting the shelves until 1910. In fact, one of the most iconic grocery item in the store was corn flakes.
Most people do not garden in the 21st century because they don’t have to, but gardening can be a great way to save money on groceries, especially if you prefer organic food. And nowadays, we have the luxury of being able to build amazing produce gardens. You can go to the store and buy any seeds you need and can grow pretty much anything your local climate can support!
3. Homemakers Looked After the House
100 years ago, only the rich had maids to keep their home clean. Everyone else cleaned everything themselves.
Nowadays home cleaning services are much more affordable, but you can save a lot of money by cleaning your home yourself. And it doesn’t have to take ages it you know the right cleaning tips, tricks, and hacks. Plus, you can avoid a lot of the chemicals found in modern cleaners if you use your own DIY cleaning products.
Whether it’s doing laundry or cleaning the floors, taking care of a home is no easy chore. Dusting the shelves, cleaning the oven, washing the laundry, this is all truly a labor of love. And it’s a great way to leave some space in your budget for other things.
4. Homemakers Made Their Own Clothing
While not all homemakers make their own clothing in the 21st century, it was a big thing in the 20th century.
Women made clothing for their family because this was the cheapest way to get clothing. Women dressed much differently 100 years ago, but they also got their clothing a lot differently. And when clothes got worn out or damaged, they weren’t just thrown out, they were mended or upcycled into something new.
Of all the hobbies out there these days, sewing is probably one of the most frugal. And it actually isn’t hard to learn, if you start with some easy beginner sewing projects.
5. Homemakers Canned 100 Years Ago
One of my favorite tasks homemakers did 100 years ago that still exists today is canning. One hundred years ago, people depended on canning for survival. It’s how they made it through the winter months and preserved foods to eat out of season.
There are homemakers today that still can. Homemade jellies, jams, salsa, and so on can still be done today! The first time I ever canned, I was impressed with how easy it was. I explain how to get started with canning here.
6. Homemakers Baked Bread 100 Years Ago
I don’t think there is anything more delicious than homemade bread. I can imagine how much harder it was to bake bread 100 years ago, which makes me super thankful for my 21st century kitchen, my KitchenAid, and my bread maker. And on top of being delicious, making your own bread is a great way to save money on a food staple (plus avoid the unnecessary additives found in commercial bread).
Homemakers today are still wowing their families with their homemade bread. Homemade white bread is always a favorite around my house. Be sure to search our site for some delicious homemade bread recipes (no bread maker required)!
7. Homemakers Budgeted Money 100 Years Ago
First of all, it’s hard to compare money today to money 100 years ago. Things were so much different, and of course back then $1 would buy what about $15 buys now.
However, homemakers still managed their households and money to the best of their abilities 100 years ago. Homemakers today do the same. However, here are some things that made managing finances harder 100 years ago…
- Food was more expensive 100 years ago.
- The average household had more than 4 people (today 2.5).
- Homes were cheaper 100 years ago. However, more people rented than owned.
- Americans walked or rode horses 100 years ago.
So making a budget (and sticking to it) was just as important then as it is now. But now we know of different ways to set up our budgets and now have tools other than paper and pencil that we can use to make budgeting easier.
As you can see, 100 years ago was an interesting time. However, it’s still really interesting to see that there are homemaking skills done 100 years ago that we still do today. And if we’re not doing them, we’re missing out on savings!
Which of these tasks homemakers did 100 years ago do you find most useful? Do you already do all of them?
You might also be interested in: 25 Handy Frugal Tips from Grandma