Tuesday 25 September 2012

Dashing away with the smoothing iron

In this un-retouched photo
you see the truth behind my useful or beautiful facade.

I am indebted to Mise for her exposé
on clothes airing, which has gone global.
Even at this late stage in my domestic career
I am refining my approach to drying, airing and ironing clothes
by collating the advice of her worldwide readers.

I now have damp shirts hanging on hangers 
from the original Edwardian airer, 
which we moved from the kitchen
where it previously hung over the stove.
The boiler, lacking much of its carapace,
wastes most of its useful heat in the downstairs loo
(not shown - I know where to draw the line)
 and is smothered with wet towels.
The fancy iron is held together with parcel tape,
because I dropped it when trying to descale it
at the Belfast sink, also not seen.
It is ready for action if the creases do not drop out.
The sun is not shining, but it might at any minute
as we are experience scattered showers.
The washing line outside the window
is still supporting luxuriant creepers
and so is of no practical use in this process.

I haven't tried drying clothes on lavender bushes,
so might for the sake of completeness,
dash out with a sock or two
in the next sunny spell.

As a final option to consider,
The Other Son came back from Japan
with shirts individually laundered, folded, wrapped
and labelled like this:

Hakuyosha clean living,
for a cleaner, more comfortable living,
Hakuyosha is extending its
'Clean Living' circle
over the world.

Contact details on request.


  1. That room looks remarkably similar to my bedroom.

    Once the monsoon starts in earnest our dhobi returns my laundry always smelling a little damp around the edges - the clothes are also far from dry..

    But following your lead, I shall insist that the staff drape my smalls over the jasmine bushes on our parade ground..

  2. I used one of those Kitchen Maid clothes airers today...... and one of those fancy irons. At the house where said iron resides, it is referred to as "The Titanic".
    Here, however, someone had the really good idea when the house was modernised, to put a small radiator in the airing cupboard so stuff dries overnight. Whoever he was deserves a medal.

  3. Having peered closely at the image, I am much in envy of the window, the door, and, in particular, the original Edwardian airer.

    What I do with shirts is tumble-dry them for 3 minutes to remove the creases, then hang them on hangers, where they stay uncreased. Most other things can go straight to the hanger. I cannot hope to compete with Hakuyosha.

  4. I'd send it all to Japan if I were you - it would save you a lot of hassle ...

    Pomona x

  5. My dear departed Dad used to sing that song. With gestures.

  6. Definitely useful. How do Americans get away without ironing? I've never understood it. Different materials?

  7. I can get a whole load of laundry on this IKEA drying rack:

    It's only cold for about 30 days here in Houston, and it's often very humid, so I usually hang everything under a ceiling fan. "Ironing" has been on my to-do list for 3 weeks now. I am going to give Mise's 3-minutes in the dryer system a go and see if it works for us!