I don't sort as a matter of routine. If I have a new article to wash that is particularly bright I might hold it on the side until I have enough clothes that I can toss it in a load without any white-whites as a precaution. Usually, whatever is in an about-a-load sized basket (each person's clothes and bath towels) goes into the washer. I have several baskets for everyone. While one basket is downstairs waiting for a load, there is still another basket in everyone's room for any dirty laundry that needs to be put somewhere in the meantime. It means we have unattractive big plastic baskets (hamper shaped--handy) sitting all over our rooms, but they function well. Whenever DSD admits she has a basket full (or two baskets full ... or that she's out of clothes ...) DH or I carry it downstairs for her and she loads it in the machine. I usually help her fold and put hers away, but trying to get her more independent on that front.
I leave the wash temp on "auto," and I'm not sure how it decides what temp to use, but when I've stopped it--and wiggled the buttons around until I can get the door to unlock--it's felt fairly warm to hot. I choose to trust the machine.
I fold clothes as I take them out of the dryer--not even an intermediate step into a basket. Once the wrinkles are set in an unfolded pile of clothes, I completely lose the will to fold. Folding hot laundry on a cold winter day is almost a treat, even. The dryer we have dries clothes faster than the washer washes them. It may be due to a really good washer spin cycle, though. In any event, if I'm on the ball and hear the dryer finish I can get the dry clothes folded before the next load is done washing. I am quadruple diligent to get DH's button-up shirts out of the dryer while they're still super hot so they only require hanging and not ironing. I'm not my grandma--no ironing underwear (or anything else for that matter).
For sheets, even though I have multiple sets for each of our beds, I try to wash and re-apply the sheets right away, rather than fold and store clean sheets. It seems like hot sheets also go on beds easier than ones with crisp fold lines.
Every couple weeks, or if we're having overnight company, I do a load of whatever towels are hanging up in the bathrooms and the bath rugs. Like sheets, I take them down, wash, and put them right back. If I get it done before the last clean hand towel is used, people can even dry their hands while I do laundry!
I put the kitchen towels and other random things that might need to be washed in loads with DH's clothes. He's a man so he doesn't care, right? Besides, it can't be worse than his dirty socks.
DH and I work where we can wear whatever we want (so long as appendages are covered) so we don't have to worry about special care clothes. The wool sweaters I have, I try to be careful in wearing so I don't have to wash often, and then I put them in a separate pile to wash them on a cooler, delicate cycle and of course no drying. Otherwise I try to avoid buying anything that requires special wash care. I do turn my jeans and black yoga pants inside-out in the wash to try to preserve the color, but that's about as high-maintenance as I put up with for regular clothes.