When it comes to putting your priority list together when finding a flat in London, where you’re going to hang your washing is probably not exactly in your top ten. However, from speaking to friends and other renters in the past few weeks, we’ve noticed that this can be an issue for many.
You could say that most places now come with washer-dryers and this post is pretty pointless, but after a long winter of putting a long drying cycle on, we’ve saw a sharp increase in our electricity bill, prompting us to stop doing this – as well as this it’s pretty bad for the environment.
So let’s go green and hang out washing out! Easier said than done in some circumstances. We’re completely spoiled in our current abode where we have a long thin garden, which the sun hits and we even have a handy, pre-drilled hole for a clothes spinner (or whirligig to use Glaswegian vernacular). We were blissfully unaware of how good we have it until a friend came over and dished her dirt (not literally…) and gave us the skinny on their split house.
It turns out, while they have a massive green garden around the back, they have no access to it, and this isn’t uncommon. Flats in London are, in most cases, split houses. And with split houses come split gardens. But what happens when the people downstairs aren’t so welcoming and won’t let you use the garden. Or what if the garden just isn’t very pleasant. Or – and most commonly – there is no garden at all. Do you rely on radiators or a stiff breeze through the kitchen window?
Now clearly, this is a bit of a first-world problem and we could all just saunter down to the laundrette, put on a service wash and cut £7 out of our shop every week. But being as budget conscious as we are we want to know what is the solution for this going forward. On a recent trip to Shanghai, Mark was agog at the amount of people who just hang their washing out of their windows – even in heavy air pollution and most of the time several stories high. Think of how many pants go missing if a freak gust of wind comes.
Luckily, earlier this year The Independent took these concerns into consideration and put together their ‘ten best’ clothes drying ideas. The article looked at several factors, such as budget, space and size and you can find the article online here. Our pick of this bunch would be the extending Laundry dryer from Garden Trading. After you get permission from your landlord (important…) to hang it, the chalk finish will look fantastic in a bedroom or kitchen – or even in a handy cupboard if you have one to keep it out of the way. At £125.00, it’s probably at the top of our budget but we love how this folds away to nothing, but yet has seven handy rails for drying, as well as some pegs!
Do you have any weird and wonderful ways to dry your clothes, or like us, do you simply pop them out in the garden? We’d love to know how you air your not-so-dirty laundry in London!
Now we’ve done this, it’s time to pop another load on – happy washing!
David & Mark x