Finally hanging clothes back outside : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

What a beautiful day! After months and months of nothing but snow on the ground, it's finally melted enough to hang clothes on the line. Tonight, I'll sleep of fresh sheets smelling of sunshine and breeze.

Spring might come to New England after all.

Thanks for reading.

-- Dianne in Mass (, April 14, 2001


Wish I would have done the same thing today. I love smelling those fresh sheets!!! Did other outside work instead.

-- Pat (, April 14, 2001.

We are in Upstate NY and last week I was finally able to hang clothes outside. I had to hang things a bit differently though since we still had about 3" of snow on the ground. It's almost all gone now, thank goodness! Lots of people around here are starting to rack the mulch off their flower beds. I'm waiting until after Wednesday. We are supposed to get more snow!!

-- CJ Popeck (, April 15, 2001.

Been hanging clothes on the line off and on for the last couple of weeks or so even tho' we've still had snow on the ground. Temps have been in the 50's and mostly sunny. The last patch of snow is still lingering on my garden!!! Maybe someone can tell me why the lawn and fields are pretty much bare, but my garden is the last to melt off. We have a southern exposure, too.

-- Marcia (, April 15, 2001.

Spring certainly has arrived in Maryland. Rain, Rain, and more rain. We did have a beautiful Resurrection Day though. Saturday was pretty as well.

We hung 3 down comforters over the fence to air in the sun, washed and hung out curtains and duvet covers. When we brought it all back in the house you could smell the freshness all over the place.

Downside to hanging things outside right now is the flies. They have a major hatching out at this time of year and sit on everything.

-- Heather in MD (, April 15, 2001.

still havesnowhere but it was melting slowly. Nowthe weather man says more snow andran tomorrow! We'll keep the wodstove going for a while longer yet.

-- michelle (, April 17, 2001.

Hi. Yall. Here in Indiana it was beautiful for several days but now it has turned cold again. This week is calling for rain every day. That is what it is doing today. We got snow a few days ago but it only lasted half a day. We have had to get our woodburner going again several nights now. The days are getting better and it is beautiful out. There has been a wonderful breeze and the flowers are starting to bloom. One day it was so windy that I had to take my clothes off the line because they were getting blown off. It even ripped one of my old towels. This is the first year that I have hung clothes out on the line all winter long. Some days it was hard to get the clothes pins off of them because they were frozen to them but the clothes smelled sooo good from the fresh air. It was pretty cold hanging them up some days when it was around zero but I just put on some thin gloves so I could still handle the pins. The only days that I don't hang clothes out is when it is raining. I even hang clothes out when it is snowing, unless the snow is a really wet heavy snow which is about the same as rain. The snow doesn't stick to the clothes and they do freeze dry. My husband thought that I was crazy for doing it and he thought that they wouldn't get dry but he knows now that they do. We have saved a lot of money this year buy not using our gas dryer. With the price of gas you have to save every where you can. We don't even use our boiler to heat our home any more. We heat it all with wood. I hope to one day get a wood cook stove. That is next on my wish list. Well I just got carried away here. Sorry. Have a blessed day. Lon

-- Lon (, April 20, 2001.

Well, Here in the Northwest we have just started hanging clothes out since the first week of April. However I have never hung my clothes out in the winter. What is freeze dried? Do you have to hang them up again inside to thaw them out? Are they still damp? I have two clothes lines in my livingroom across the room about 15 feet from the woodstove that unhooks at each end and the eyehooks on the wall just stay there year around. I put it up at night and by morning the clothes are all dry. I also use it on rainy days. I use a freestanding clothesrack for our underwear and towels. With the clothesline when I take it down in the morning I just take it down with the clothespin on it and ready to use the next time. I use a vinyl covered clothesline.

-- Marie Fila (, April 20, 2001.

Hi, I would like to have a clothesline but where I live , it has to be shorter than the fence.Does anyone have any ideas on how I can Have Hubby Build one?Also,what does everyone use to keep their clothes from turning hard when dry ?Like towels.I always wondered that :) Thanks so much.Newbie here and learning so much from this wonderfull bunch:) Heidi

-- Heidi (, May 16, 2001.

Heidi, I try to use my clothesline as much a possible, but I know what you mean about "hard towels"! What I do is to throw towels and other "hard" clothing in my dryer with a dryer softening sheet for just a couple of minutes or so on cool temp. Works okay for me! Hey, has anyone else heard that in some towns and cities it's against local regulations to hang laundry outside? How warped is that??!

-- Marcia (, May 17, 2001.

I use about half the detergent for towels and no fabric softner but use white vinegar. Softner makes towels less absorbent. Before hanging towels on the line, I run them about 10 to 15 minutes in the dryer. One reason towels can be stiff is soap residue. The vinegar really cuts soap residue.

I've heard some places object to hanging clothes on the line but I thought surely it must be a joke. I do follow the "modest" technique when hanging clothes i.e., undies on the inside lines and shirts/sheets on outside lines to hide the undies.

Apparently people who object to outside clothes lines have more money for utilities than smarts.

-- Dianne Bone (, May 17, 2001.

Thanks for the vinegar tip, Dianne. I use vinegar (white & cider) for lots of other things. Don't know why I never thought of using it in the wash----Duh!! And I for one do not have any extra money for the utility companies so they'll have to fight to take MY clothesline away :)!

-- Marcia (, May 17, 2001.

you all did hear right about it not being permitted to hang clothes outside in some neighborhoods, so far here in N. Al. it only pertains to the historic neighborhoods and the newfangled communities to where they have strict rules about not only clotheslines but you cannot mow your own lawn and all lawns must be mowed at the same lawn decorations etc. i have never seen one of them but i can't imagine folks wanting to live in such a the way hanging my clothes out is a real time saver . i get it done and put away . if i use the dryer i get off on something else and i never get back to putting the laundry away and it results in mounds of clothes.

-- gilane in Alabama (, May 22, 2001.

In some sub-divisions in the small town of Olney, outside clothes lines are not allowed. So thankful we live in the boonies on our own 40 acres, with 3 long clothes lines near the back porch and a line stretched on the back porch. I always hang the pillowslips and pajamas outside, even in winter. Even if they don't completely dry, when I bring them in and put on wooden folding drying rack, they retain the sweet outside smell (unless they are downwind of the wood stove!) About the freeze drying method--been there, done that. When I was growing up, we didn't have electricity. We did have a gasoline powered wringer washing machine. Can you imagine doing laundry that way for 8 kids (7 of them boys) with all the bib overalls, long johns, etc.? During the winter, water was heated on the Home comfort cook stove, the washer and tubs were moved into the kitchen and we had a full day of it. The clothes were hung outside where they froze stiff as boards. Sometimes they were brought inside and stood in a corner until they melted enough to bend, then put on chair backs, folding racks, or anyplace we could stash them until they dried. During nice weather, water was heated outside in a big iron kettle over a wood fire, home-made lye soap was shaved into it, then the skum was removed from the top of the water. The washer and rinse tubs were situated in the back yard, under a shady tree. No running water, so all the water was hand pumped into buckets, carried to the iron kettle, then after heated, transferred again to buckets and carried to the washing machine. I still love to smell outside-dried clothes but am so very thankful that I don't have to do it like my mom did 60 yrs. ago!

-- ruth in s.e.Illinois (, May 22, 2001.

I have really enjoyed the responses regarding hanging clothes outside on the line. I just read an article from the "Sacramento Bee" by Mary Lynne Vellinga discussing that in spite of the energy crunch, many Californians have hangups about clotheslines.

The California Energy Commission touts clotheslines as a nearly cost- free way to conserve electricity. (DUH!!! Wonder when they found that out!!!) But apparently communities governed by homeowners associations don't care for clothelines and have banned them in virtually all the 35,000 California subdivisions and comdominium complexes. A quote from Richard Monson, president of the California Association of Homeowners Association says: "We choose to live in neighborhoods that don't hang these things out." He stands by his assertion that the sign of clothes flapping in the breeze could knock 15 percent off property values.

When I decided to submit this to the forum, I couldn't decide if I should start a new thread and if so, what category it should fall under. Alternate energy? Environmental? Laundry? Joke?

I can't believe someone, especially someone who lives in an area with rolling black-outs would be such a snob when it comes to something as "real" as a clothesline.

-- Dianne in Mass (, May 24, 2001.

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