Posts Tagged ‘hang drying’

Keep Your Shirts On

May 12, 2011

My schedule has been unusual recently, leaving me less time for doing the things I normally do, laundry included.

Happily I’ve managed to keep clean sheets on the bed, towels in the bathroom and…erm…drawers in the drawers. The rest has been neglected, which is why today’s laundry featured 15 light-colored shirts and four nightshirts. It’s as much as the drying rack will bear.

Tomorrow’s wash load will contain some dear old friends I haven’t seen in a while. When the laundry piles up, wash day is like a reunion.

Laundry Day #7

April 19, 2010


Pants: 1
Shirts: 10
Shorts: 1

Temperature: Cold

Cost: $1.75

What have we learned?

Today is National Hanging Out Day. To celebrate I washed a Cold Delicate load and hung it “out” to dry on the drying rack in my bathtub. Living in an apartment, I don’t actually have an “out” in which to hang my laundry. I do what I can.

“For many people, hanging out clothes is therapeutic work. It is the only time during the week that some folks can slow down to feel the wind and listen to the birds,” says Project Laundry List on its website.

For me, every aspect of the laundry process is therapeutic in some way (in case you haven’t noticed), but I appreciate PLL’s perspective on this as well as its advocacy for the use of clotheslines as a way to reduce energy consumption.

Laundry makes a statement.

To Everything There is a Season

April 7, 2010

We mark the passing of the seasons through laundry: Socks turns from black to white and back again; sleeves grow longer then shorter then longer again; fabrics shed weight and texture, then fatten up.

Bright colored T-shirts and (in a month or so) sleeveless blouses drip dry from the shower rod. There are the requisite black Ts of course, but they hang alongside melon, lime, and raspberry—the flavors of the season. Pumpkin, red, and gold would seem incongruous now.

Everything takes a little longer to dry now that the heat has been turned off, but the air around the laundry rack is cool and moist, and the scent of fabric softener creates the illusion of having my own clothesline in the sun. If I close my eyes I can picture the fabric rippling in the breeze. And in the morning, the day seems brighter when I’m greeted by a drawer full of freshly laundered clothes.

Like the food we eat, the clothes we wear—and launder—change with the seasons.

Laundry is in sync with nature.

Pandora Visits the Laundry Room

April 6, 2010

There was a minor kerfuffle involving suds in the laundry room the other day. Pandora was outraged.

Pandora is vigilant in her crusade against injustice, which takes many forms. You never know where it’s lurking; you must proceed with caution.

In this instance, injustice came in the form of soap suds spewing from the washers. Someone who’d used the washers before Pandora had overloaded them with detergent—too much for a single wash cycle to accommodate. There were traces of it in the soap dispenser when Pandora loaded her clothes into the washer. Nevertheless, she added more soap for her wash and the washing machine responded by producing more suds. Lots more suds.

Pandora had to wash her clothes a second time just to get rid of the suds. She said she ran them through three wash cycles and they still didn’t come out right. She blamed the machines. She blamed the company that maintains the machines. She blamed the manufacturers of the high-efficiency detergent that, she said, “everyone is using now” (everyone but Pandora). Someone had to be responsible for perpetrating this injustice.

I didn’t want to argue with Pandora so I nodded sympathetically and put my clothes into the washer for a cold delicate cycle. I wiped the soap residue from the dispenser before I started the washer. When the wash cycle was finished, there were no excess suds. I brought the clothes upstairs to hang dry. There might have been trouble lurking in the dryer. Why take the risk?

Pandora does not visit the laundry room often. When she does, it’s a memorable occasion.

Hanging Out

March 14, 2010

Project Laundry List is pursuing an interesting crusade: attempting to convince people—Americans in particular—to line dry their clothes instead of using tumble-dryers. You’d think this wouldn’t be a difficult task, but you’d be wrong.

Americans love their creature comforts—Hummers, cathedral ceilings, electric can openers—most of which (not so coincidentally) are energy hogs. Tumble-dryers are no exception: The Department of Energy estimates that they account for 6 percent of household energy usage in the United States. That seems extreme, and avoidable, which is part of Project Laundry List’s reason for being.

Making the campaign an uphill battle is that fact that line-drying laundry is actually—and bizarrely—against the law in many communities in the United States. This is somewhat akin to prohibiting people from riding bikes and walking, and forcing them to drive SUVs instead.

To someone, somewhere, this makes sense. Not to me. I’m in favor of hanging out.