What is a DHOBEY Bag

Written by AHQ

4 December 2014

Only a very short post tonight.  At this time of year thoughts turn to Christmas. Here at Aussie Heroes is it the same.  Today I have Gail coming for a couple of hours to help me package up some goodies to send off to a bunch of deserving fellows and tomorrow I have Tracey (a navy wife ;-D) coming to help me pack up about a dozen quilts and a stack of laundry bags. Before they can all be boxed and sealed I need to write covering letters, print off address labels and check and double check that the right quilt or laundry bag is going to the right person.  I can either sit here and write a long blog post or I can get those letters and labels written and I think I know what our recipients would rather. 

Thanks so one of our lovely ladies there a short piece for your enjoyment.  
I am still looking for others who would like to write some guest pieces for me if anyone is interested.  

A quick reminder about our laundry bag challenge – all the details are here.  The instructions say that you must send it to me by the 8th but if you are coming to the dinner you can bring it with you as long as you send me a photograph of it beforehand. Do not forget to include a letter for your recipient inside it and pin a piece of material or paper inside with your name on it so we know who made it.


Janine has written a small piece on the origin of the name that is used within the Navy for their laundry bag – the Dhobey bag!  I hope you enjoy it.  

What is a DHOBEY bag?

You may have noticed that our navy recipients often refer to their laundry bags as Dhobey (or dhobie) bags.  Apparently the origin is the Hindu word dhob, meaning washing

Dhobey was an India Services’ slang name for Laundry, used widely by the British Army, which spread to the Royal Navy, then the Royal Canadian Navy and The Royal Australian Navy and is still used today.

Dhobey refers to the clothes that are washed – laundry,
Dhobey is also the business that does the washing – the laundry,
The dhobey was the man or men who did the work of washing – the dhobey (man).
A ‘Dhobey Firm’ was a business that employed men to launder clothes. (Note the word men, it was a male area)

Today a dhobie bag is a laundry bag or washing bag,
Dhobeying is the act of washing,
Dhobey dust is the washing powder.

I am off to tear up the keyboard for the day. 

Till next time…………..keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree xx

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