Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Solar clothes dryer

Like my forebears, I dry my clothes on a clothesline.  We were "green" before "green" was cool.  My son has a part-time job at the YMCA working with little kids.  His uniform is a blue YMCA T-shirt.  I will be busy keeping those three shirts washed.  Also hanging on the line is a church league softball shirt.  Go #21!!
My dear husband put up the clothesline.  As the saying goes, "FAIL" just means "first attempt in learning."  We bought the flimsy metal posts which were called clothesline posts at the home improvement store, but those eventually buckled under the strain.  We have had good success with the posts we have up now which are actually metal plumbing pipes.  If I remember correctly, my husband had the guys at the home improvement store cut them to the length we needed.  (The morning glories and honeysuckle have given the post their seal of approval.)

Now the YELLOW LAUNDRY BASKET has a story all its own.  (It is just posing in the above picture; I do NOT leave it out while the clothes are drying!)  I am the kind of person who deliberates over the smallest decision.  Over 30 years ago (with all the angst of a homebody who was reluctantly striking out on her own), I stood in a discount store in Troy, NC and tried to decide if I should buy the $2 laundry basket or the $4 basket which promised to be so durable.  I finally went with the yellow $4 sturdy basket, the "FESCO 5433 made in the U.S.A." basket.  I think I got lucky with that one!  I wish I could feel that good about some of my other decisions...

Do you remember your mother's clothespin bag?  There is something comforting about a homey fabric clothespin bag.  I made mine out of a cheap calico I bought on sale when I worked at a fabric store years ago.
I slip it over my head so that it hangs from my left shoulder to my right side. 
A tip from Mom:  make the front panel a little shorter than the back so that it is easier to slip your hand in and out. 
My own little innovations: make the front panel a bit wider than the back panel, and attach the straps to the back panel.  I think I might have made the front panel just a little wider at the top, also.  These things help it hang open and facilitate that quick draw.  (The Rifleman ain't got that much on a good housewife with her clothespin bag.) 
A tip from my husband:  if the bag is too deep, sew a seam across the bottom.  I had made this bag too deep, and I was a bit frustrated:  I didn't want to shorten the straps because then I would have to reach too high to access the opening, but it would be hard to reach the clothespins in the bottom of the bag as it was.  My husband, who is not into crafts, sewing, or any kind of construction whatsoever, suggested the seam across the bottom.  I don't mind saying that surprised me.  I modified his idea just a little:  I caught a little triangle of fabric in each lower corner of the bag with a little seam about 2" long or so, which effectively gave the bag a bottom and also decreased the depth.  That did the trick.  A remarkably brilliant, remarkably simple solution from an unexpected source...
My neighbor has a high strung personal defense dog that he is training.  Despite the fact that I'm in the backyard enough that he should know me, he still barks at me at times.  Once when I was hanging out my clothes, it dawned on me that he was barking every time I reached into the bag and rattled the clothespins.  It made me stop and think about how much I like that sound, myself.
A clothespin bag can also do double duty as a berry picking bag if you slip an empty oatmeal box or plastic bucket into it.
Long live the clotheslines, laundry baskets, and clothespins bags.


1 comment:

  1. I just lost a great comment. LOL
    I was a heavy weight fight fan when a guy named Cassius Clay was fighting Muy man Liston. My time to hang diapers, the radio was on and I told Sherry I would be in for the second round. When I came in it was over. SHUCKS!

    I remeber mama and clothes pins in her mouth humming some gospel song.

    I like this entry!