Growing up in the burbs of Sydney, Mum always hung the washing on the original metal Hills Hoist clothesline. On a slight grassy slope at the bottom of the back verandah, the line was easy to spin for the large sheets and towels to hang freely in the breeze.
As a child, that clothesline beckoned for more fun than just clothes hanging. The lines of steel became my amusement park. I could fly! Holding on with both hands, I leapt forward with enough momentum to successfully swing around one clothesline rotation’s worth. I was superman!
There’s so much choice for clothesline styles these days. I don’t think they are best suited for use as a playground! As a grown-up, I love my clothesline/s for their intended use – an amusement park for clothes. There’s satisfaction about seeing clean tops and bottoms flapping in the breeze, knowing that the warmth from the air and sun has the inbuilt power to dry washing.
Living either in Sydney and Newcastle, in the warm temperate climate, I’ve never owned nor felt the need for a clothes dryer. There are rare times when it would have been handy, but it’s easy to make do with what I have. Combined with these tried and tested ways to hang your clothes well, here’s why you’ll start using a clothesline in a jiffy.
Hanging out the clothes on your outdoor clothesline takes less than 15 minutes and is a great reason to get outside. While the weather works magic to dry our clothes, take this opportunity to feel, smell and hear what’s happening in your backyard before doing whatever else needs to be done.
In a few sunshiney hours (or minutes in 40 degree heat!), return to a line full of dry clothes. Establishing a simple washing and drying routine will help you work out the time saving know-how along with the other benefits of fresh air clothes hanging.
I absolutely love the “sunny” smell of my clean, dry and crisp bedsheets when I remake the beds. UV rays have the power to make my clothes smell naturally fresh. Sun-drying our clothes helps to prevent moisture & mould build up in the house, as well as icky dust mites.
UV rays have the power to make my clothes smell naturally fresh. The sun is also a natural bleaching agent, so for whiter whites, dry them outside to soak up the sun’s rays.
Choosing fragrance free washing detergents means the only smell you’ll be smelling is the natural sun-soaked freshness of newly laundered clothes from flapping in the breeze.
Clothes Last Longer
Fresh air is much gentler on your clothes. Hanging clothes the right way, (and with pegs that don’t stain your clothes), will increase the lifespan of your clothes, and decrease the need for extra work such as ironing and folding.
Gotta Love a Freebie
We all love something for free. Hanging your clothes on the backyard clothesline is one of the best freebie things we have access to. This is energy-efficient, eco-friendly living at it’s best – no energy bill, no machine and no maintenance expenses. How cool is that?
Based on energy.gov.au top 8 simple actions to save, by using the clothesline twice a week instead of using a dryer could save up to $158 per year!
Let’s Hang Out
Hanging clothes on a line, preferably outside, is do-able for everyone. On our recent visit to Japan in their winter season, every apartment had an outside clothesline on the verandah. Let’s hang out the washing, even if it is only 5 degrees celsius.
Modern-day washing days are much easier weather-wise than the weather-woes of washing days gone by. We can see in real-time and a 7-day forecast of the weather in our area. Install the reliable BOM weather app for up to date weather info if you prefer to plan your washing days and times.
These five reasons why drying your clothes outside on your backyard clothesline are a small step in living sustainably. Using what we already have – the excellent weather- and being resourceful is a positive change for our wellbeing, and also treads lightly on our planet.
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