Some time ago a reader asked the following:
Patrice, how do you dry bed linens indoors? I have a great drying rack that holds a full/large load of laundry but I still find it challenging to dry bed sheets inside. Some days, like today, it was just too damp and cloudy for the bed linens to dry on the outside line. I have them draped over the clothes rack now but in order to do so, I have them folded several times. If I hadn't hung them outside today, despite the weather, I doubt they'd dry anytime soon folded on the clothes rack. Any tips?
I've been meaning to answer this question for some time, so here's a short history of our laundry (specifically drying) issues.
We have a clothes dryer but hate to use it because it sucks up so much propane. Years ago, Don installed a clothesline for me, which I used constantly during warmer weather.
But during the winter, obviously we couldn't use the clothesline. For awhile it meant we reverted to using the dryer.
Then I discovered standing clothes racks. Oh my, what a difference. We seldom used the dryer after that, during the winter.
But summer time, I still used the clothesline until one fateful day when it simply... broke. Dropped four loads of wet laundry onto the ground. Bummer.
So I went to using clothes racks full-time, particularly since the clothesline broke in October and outdoor drying was about finished for the season anyway.
But clothes racks have their limitations, notably space. If I have a heavy laundry day, I simply run out of racks.
Additionally, it's almost impossible (as the reader above noted) to dry sheets on racks. We used to use our stair banister...
...but it's not good for more than one sheet at a time.
So a few years ago, my dear husband built me a hanging clothes rack, permanently suspended from our upstairs ceiling. This rack holds four loads of laundry at a time. I still use standing racks for overflow laundry, particularly whites (socks, undies, dishtowels, etc.).
The hanging rack has made all the difference when it comes to drying sheets. This past week, since everyone was sick in our house, everyone wanted fresh clean sheets. I had everyone strip their beds, and I was able to hang every last sheet at the same time. Bliss!
Incidentally, we never did re-install an outdoor clothesline. Why bother, when the indoor one works so well? (Though I'll admit nothing beats sun-dried sheets for a fresh smell.)
So that's how we handle our laundry issues.