If you have only a few items of various types of fabric to wash, you can put them all in the machine together (provided that the colors do not run). However you must wash them as directed for the most delicate fabric that is amongst them. Use less powder. Most manufacturers recommend that you use more than you need. It is better for sales. You can get away with using half as much powder, if not less. If there are suds left in the water after the last rinse, put the items back in the machine for one more rinse but add a cup full of vinegar, into the washing machine.