How To Hang Clothes Inside To Dry

I’ve been without a dryer for nearly 3 years now. We could’ve replaced it many times ago, but decided for one reason or another to continue hanging clothes on the clothesline. Of course, you can still hang clothes outside to dry in the winter, but it’s very cooooold on the old hands.

We bought a heavy duty drying rack a few years ago, and  I am going to show you how to hang up clothes inside to dry, and have space for them all!

clothes rack post

We are going to start with the basics. If you lay a shirt over a rod to dry, you will get a “crease” in the middle. Plain and simple. To avoid that, hang all your shirts on a hanger. Pretty easy, right? Once they are dry, you take them from the drying rack right to the closet. Easy peasy.

Pants you will want to hang up and move them over enough so that the legs are what’s hanging on the rack, and the “butt” of the jeans is hanging down. Makes a bit more room on the rod. Also, it keeps the “crease” in the knee area where you normally bend anyway.

Things like washclothes, socks, and underwear are confusing for some. You pretty much have to “roll” with them as they are, right? There’s no way to really hang them…or is there?

See what I do?

hang up clothes and save space

I get hangers, and the spring-loaded clothes pins. Each hanger holds about 8-10 washcloths, and can hold up to 10 pairs of underwear or socks. Each family member gets their own hanger, so when it’s time to put the clothes away, the just grab their hanger and go.

It’s easy, saves space and I can get nearly 8 loads of laundry on two 42″ wide, 6′ tall drying racks this way. Bonuses are that since they are drying inside, we get the humidity back into the air that the wood stove takes out, and the smell of “clean” hangs out all day and night. Plus, saving money on electricity is always nice.

What do you do to hang up your clothes? Or are you a “die hard” dryer fan?

27 thoughts on “How To Hang Clothes Inside To Dry”

  1. I wish I had thought of this while I was cloth diapering. A huge reason I failed at cloth diapering was that I wasn’t able to air dry them outside in the winter.

  2. Chelle @ oh just stop already

    Oh man I wish I had the patience to line dry. I tried for a while and enjoyed it but the kids or dogs would pull it down. The jeans always took forever and well my patience is not my strongest trait.

  3. I grew up without a dryer, only a washer and lines hung up o the basement for drying clothes. In the summer they were hung outside. To this day I hate just throwing clothes into the dryer to take care of things. I have a folding metal rack for drying clothes and everything goes on there. The most I like to do is throw things into air fluff when they are dry because they always end up stiff after indoor line dry.

  4. I am totally a hang up cloths kind of gal, unfortunately after moving to FL, yes I did say “unfortunately” I live in an apartment where we can’t hang clothes outside. We started doing the inside but since the humidity is so high here the clothes actually would last forever to dry and would end up with a not so present smell. That being said we have turned back to the dryer 🙁 until the summer is back and I will try again.
    BTW love your post and all your great tips.

    1. To cut down on both the use of your dryer ($$) and the time it takes the items to dry in the humid climate we live in here in the south, you can just run them a few minutes (maybe 30?) in the dryer, then hang them up to finish drying.
      I read that the clothes dryer uses the same amount of electricity as your refrigerator, washing machine, and dishwasher COMBINED! It is second only in power usage to your air conditioner.

  5. Michelle in Missouri

    I have a really nice, three tier folding clothes rack that I bought several years ago. I can (and do) hang all our jeans on it because my girls don’t want their jeans to shrink. I found a decent one to send with my oldest to college since she threatened to steal mine! I also have a really nice hanging rack with tons of clothespins attached to hang our bras to dry. I love hanging out towels on the line, and have found that a better quality towel doesn’t seem to get that stiff feeling. (I just bought new towels after 23 years.) And sheets on the line is my favorite!

  6. kelli swearingen

    I love hanging m clothes. In the wintertime we use racks and put them in the livingroom near our woodstove. Creates humidity AND dries the clothes. Two birds with one stone!

  7. I very seldom use the dryer. In the summer I love to hang them out and in the winter I use a drying rack called the eagle. It works really well. We have in floor heat so the heat is rising from underneath them and they dry really fast.

  8. Bridget Elizabeth

    Where did you get this heavy duty drying rack?! We live in an apartment building where you have to pay for the washer and dryer so I’ve been looking for ways to hang clothes to air dry in my house! Thanks!

  9. If you have the ability to do this …my father in law rigged up a rack for me by screwing hooks into a beam in the basement and suspending a heavy – duty shower curtain rod from a short length of chain.

  10. I have to go to the laundromat and drying the clothes cost more than washing, and since I’m on a very limited budget, and just can afford it, but unfortunately I also live in a small apartment, but a long bedroom closet, so I hang them in the closet and turn the fan on them, also I bought an accordion style rack to hang the small stuff. I’ve been doing it for a month now and it’s working out ok, when the weather warms up some I will figure out how to string a clothesline on my patio but I also want to plant a garden so figuring out both is going to be tricky, but I loved this I know I’m not alone out there doing this.

  11. I sstll use my dryer when i have to (blankets in winter and when i have to much lau dry to be done). For the most part i have not used it in 2 years. I have shelves up in my pantry/ mud room that i use to store my empty mason jars on. I have industrial pipe running along the bottem about 20 feet. i use plastic hangers to hang shirts and sweaters and boxers, pant hangers for pants and shorts and boxers, and a umbrella hanger for bras, undies, socks, wash cloths, cloth pads, and any other small things i have. Bath towels go right over the pipe and so do blankets if i dont use the dryer for them.

  12. Michelle Hedgcock

    I had my husband install a clothesline in my utility/storage room a couple years ago. Basically it spans the length of the house in the basement. Not as nice as hanging outside because I have to be strategic in where I hang the longer stuff vs the shorter stuff because the space IS my storage room and where most of my canned goods are as well. I’ve been using that hanger trick for a couple years too to save space on my clothesline. Recently I got a bit lazy and resorted to using the dryer more. Then it started leaving marks on the clothes. My husband looked into replacing the gasket and apparently it is pretty expensive. So then he considered buying a new one (no way!! It’s not in the budget. LOL). So I said, “Let’s just get rid of the dryer altogether.” Then immediately thought, “WHAT am I thinking!” LOL So far we haven’t gotten rid of the dryer but I am drying all the laundry on the line. Did I mention the utility/storage room is unheated? It’s pretty cold on the hands but not as cold as being outside in this frigid weather!

    1. that’s a great idea! I wish I had a basement to do this in! Ours is just a Michigan basement, which is nothing more than a hole in the ground.

  13. I do not own nor do I wish to own a dryer. I hang all our clothes outside if the weather permits or, inside. I have 2 wood clothes racks I use for socks, undies, bras and I have a clothesline hanging from our spindles near the front door to a hook near the dining room door with clothes pins hanging on it. I just leave the pins on the line all the time. I like your idea for the socks though!

  14. I just hang clothes on the shower rod. Better than going to the laundromat, especially at -40°F. The rare time I use the laundry, I put 2 wash loads in 1 dryer to save money. They aren’t fully dry but they will dry quickly with most of the water out.

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