Laundry: Sorting Out Life One Load at a Time (Part 1)

In one of our past blogs, Mark blogged about the indoor clothesline he made for me.  I absolutely love it.  He has made drying clothes during the Fall/Winter months so much easier.  I thought that I would want to take this line down in between washing clothes, but this has not been the case.  We shall see if I take it down during the Summer months, when I use our outdoor clotheslines.

Sheets on our Clothesline

Sheets on our Clothesline

When we moved onto our property, there were some dilapidated out buildings and an old weathered clothesline. I still use to this day the clothesline the former owners made.  The clothesline is long and has four different lines to hang clothes on.  I can hang about 2 loads of laundry on these lines at a time.

Being raised in what I call suburbia, hanging clothes was a new task for me.  I can remember my mom hanging some clothes in our backyard and remember visiting my grandma in the Santa Cruz mountains, where she often had sheets hanging on the clothesline.  I can still smell the fresh mountain scented sheets I slept in as a kid when visiting grandma and grandpa.  Nothing like clean fresh sheets!  Even though, my mom and grandma used the clothesline sometimes, I never had to perform the task myself.

I Love my Grandma's Hanging Clothespin Bag!

I Love my Grandma’s Hanging Clothespin Bag!

I had read and saved an article from Countryside Small Stock Journal Magazine before we actually moved onto our property.  So when I first had to hang our clothes to dry, I found this article, read it again, and used many of the tips it suggested.  Here are some of the tips I read and some tips I have learned myself:

* Use a clothespin hanging bag – I use my Grandma’s that my mom gave me.  I love this thing!  These bags make using and gathering clothespins easier.
* Hang pants upside down with a clothespin holding each pant leg.  Have 2-3 inches hanging over the line that is flipped toward you.(See jean photo below)
* Hang shirts upside down.  This prevents one from having bumps stick up on the shoulders from the clothespins.  Also, do not stretch shirts out tight on the line.  This makes them stretch out of shape.  Have 2-3 inches flipped over the line facing you (like jeans in photo) and place a pin on each side of the shirt.
* Hang socks from the foot side, using one pin for each sock.  Air can get in easier and socks tend to dry faster with the bottom open.
* When hanging hand towels and big towels, have 2-3 inches come over the line toward you (like jean photo) to allow most of the towel to hang and dry.  Use two pins to secure the towels, one on each side.
* I try to do a whole load of towels and washcloths together because hanging them together can be done easily.  Remove from your washing machine the big towels first and place in basket in a pile.  Take washcloths from the washer and lay flat in a stack on top of the big towel pile in your basket and then do the same with the hand towels  At the clothesline, pick up first hand towel at the top with first fingers and thumbs.  Then use second fingers and go under second hand towel at top and hold between first fingers and second fingers and do the same with third and pinky fingers.  Now that there are four hand towels in between your fingers, go to the clothesline and lay over the line each towel starting with the towel between your pinky and third finger. Once the hand towels are laying over the line, with pins in hand take the end of towel and adjust towel so  2-3 inched are hanging over the line toward you (like jean photo) and the rest of the towel is hanging down the back and secure with two pins, one on each side.  You can use this same method for hanging your washcloths and for T-Shirts.

*When removing towels from the line, I fold the big towels first one at a time and place them in my basket.  I then go to the hand towels that are hanging in a row and gather all the clothespins usually without the towels falling.  Next, I go down the line and grab and pull the first towel at the bottom hold onto it and grab the next and so on.  This way one has a handful of towels that can be placed in the basket to lay flat on top of the big towels that were just folded.  Washcloths can be gathered in the same fashion as the hand towels and I find I gather my T-Shirts the same way.  I find that folding the hand towels and wash clothes and T-Shirts inside to be easier.  I do not have an outside “table” by my clothesline to be able to fold clothes outside. Hmmm, may have to do this in the future.

Jeans on the Line!

Jeans on the Line!

* I also try to do full loads of jeans/pants.  To hang pants, I take them out of the washing machine, shake them straight, lay them flat and stack them one on top of each other on the edge of my washer. I take out jeans first and stack them and then stack other pants on top. Next, I take my stack of pants and throw it over my shoulder with the top of the pants tossed over my shoulder.  I walk out to my clothesline with my clothespin bag and hang it on the line.  I take one pair of pants at a time from my shoulder and toss the pants over the line with the top flipped over the line and pants part hanging in front of the line.  Once all the pants are tossed over the line, I take my clothespins in hand and pick up each pant leg at the bottom and allow 2-3 inches to hang over the line and pin each leg to the line to allow the pants to hang upside down.(See jean photo)

* When I gather my pants, I pick up all the clothe pins from the jeans at once, usually without the pants falling off the line.  I then take each pair of jeans off the line by the leg section, fold them in half and toss them over my shoulder.  Now the pant legs are over my shoulder with the top of the jeans hanging in front of me.  Next, I gather my other pants in the same fashion, but one at a time.  Finally, I take the stack that is over my shoulder inside and fold them there.

Any little “trick” that I can use to make drying clothes on a line easier, faster, and more efficient I am all for.  If you have tips you know about, feel free to comment and let us know.  One can never know too many “tricks of the trade”!

One thought on “Laundry: Sorting Out Life One Load at a Time (Part 1)

  1. This brings back so many memories from my childhood. 🙂 My Mom always hung cloths on the line outside. And they did have such a different smell, and “crispness” to the cloths, and sheet’s. Why don’t we still do this?? I love how you and Mark explain the things you do in your home.. YOU give US more TIP’S than we could ever give you.. Thanks for your amazing post’s. ❤


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