Friday, February 15, 2013

Textile Friday: Air or Line Drying

          Last time we talked about using a dryer, this week we're going to talk about line drying. While many people in the US consider air drying passe, over 70% of the world does air drying either because it saves a couple hundred dollars a year or protects your clothing. Sometimes both. Air drying itself is a pretty simple concept, simply hang up the clothing and expose it to air until it naturally dries from evaporation. Both advanced countries like Japan and 3rd world countries like Mexico embrace the practice.
           In the US, many home owners associations actively or passively forbid line drying in their covenants seeing them as lowering the property value, frugality be damned. If you live in a more lenient portion of the country, simply purchase a $5-10 tractable laundry line and hang it up. When you need to dry your laundry, zip it out and follow this handy Instructable to simply hang your clothes up with plastic hangers. Some people prefer clothesline umbrellas as they can be put up or down at will.
          However, if you've actually traveled, you know that simple clotheslines are not generally used overseas because of overall space requirements and smaller folding models provide a handy alternative to a prolonged legal battle or neighborhood wrath in the US. It doesn't make sense to save a couple hundred dollars a year on your household expenses if you end up spending it in legal battles. More complicated indoors or porch models are a great solution for walking in two worlds. They also have the distinct advantage of not being weather dependent or taking up a large amount of space. There's many different models available on the market.
A simple search through ebay, target, or any other retail space will present a variety of options. Here's a few pictures I pulled of current models under $100 on ebay. You can normally pick one up for under $50. Hopefully this will give you some ideas to start from, you can find your own model just for you.
              Happy searching, and may you pick up a new skill this spring or dust off an old one.

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