I wrote a post many moons ago about making homemade laundry detergent. As I'm writing this post I'm making my second batch of detergent from the same original ingredients. I wash at least one load of laundry a week and I think going 4 months without having to make a new batch (or buy the store bought variety) is pretty darn good.
The laundry does not leave a smell on my clothes. Some folks like the smell of their laundry detergent because of the smell. I don't care about it. My dryer sheets (store bought) leave enough of a fresh scent for my liking.
I've also noticed that my front load washer doesn't smell of mildew like it did with store bought detergent. Interesting, and thankful, side effect.