Green household: outdoor clothesline

I have always been kind of anal about what clothes I will allow in the dryer (read:  none), partly because that is how I learned to do laundry, partly because it prevents shrinkage, fading and wear and tear, and also because dryers are a notorious hog of your household’s energy budget.  Second only to refrigerators in energy usage for appliances, about 6% of your energy bill can be accounted for by your dryer alone.

Since college I’ve had this little (okay, big) clothes drying rack from Ikea.  In spite of the negative feng shui, unless I wanted to impress new guests to my home, it’s pretty much always been open in my bedroom for drying all my shirts, jeans, etc (and also comes in handy when you feel like being lazy about folding clothes).  But it’s not terribly useful for large items like towels and sheets, so I’ve always relied on the electric dryer for those.

But now that I have a back yard, it was time to invest in an outdoor clothesline.  I purchased this one from and had Mr R attach it to a metal pole that was mysteriously sticking out of the ground next to the old wash basin I mentioned yesterday.  I guess it probably was some sort of clothesline before?  The other end I attached to the house.  The line works like a pulley so you can stay in one spot and not have to drag the basket of wet laundry down the line.

I hung my towels out first, and on a hot, dry day like today, they were dry in under an hour. And they smelled wonderful!  I pulled them down when they were 99% dry and popped them in the dryer for 5 minutes to soften them up — they do get a little stiff when air dried.


I realized later that extending the line underneath a mulberry tree might not have been the best idea.  But otherwise it would have had to cut through the middle of my yard.  Oh well.  I guess this just means I won’t be able to use it for a few weeks in June.



2 thoughts on “Green household: outdoor clothesline

  1. Julie @ Outtakes on the Outskirts

    I LOVE my clothesline. I love the smell of the clothes and the fact that my jeans always fit after drying on the line!

    I’ve been to Lehman’s and am a frequent shopper there myself. I love that store and everything it stands for. Do you make your own detergent too? If you don’t, I highly recommend it!


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