I just bought some soap nuts and I am just using up the last of my laundry detergent before I start using them. I don't know how good they are but the reviews on them were really, really good from the website I bought them from. I'm all for a more natural way to clean my laundry and it's very economical too.
Yes, we have used soapnuts for a long time, specially for batik laundry. We use soapnuts to wash batiks to preserve their colors to stay vivid and longer. People in central and east Java are commonly use soapnuts too in their practices in washing their precious clothes, including batik.