How to hang clothes on a washing line

Is there are a right way and a wrong way to hang clothes on the line?

You bet there is! If you’ve ever wondered why your clothes take so long to dry, or why they’re an odd shape, or why you have to iron every single item to get it looking presentable to wear, read on for my advice on the correct way to hang clothes on the line allowing fast-drying, wrinkle-free results!


Your choice of clothes peg is important and there is no one size fits all the choice is huge and if you are not sure what to look for then check out my top peg buying tips.


Clothes pegs are usually made from plastic, stainless steel or wood. Plastic clothes pegs are durable and weather resistant, but they can be flimsy, snap easily especially in the colder weather and sometimes struggle to hold heavier items.

Stainless steel clothes pegs are durable and strong, while wooden clothes pegs offer a traditional look and are much better for the environment.


Clothes pegs are available in a range of sizes. Smaller clothes pegs struggle to hold heavier items like wet jeans, bed linen or winter coats. You’ll need to use more of them per item, which will give you less overall. Large and robust clothes pegs are suitable for heavier items.


If your garden is exposed to the elements, you’ll need clothes pegs with good grip. Those with a tough and sturdy spring can hold heavier items, but delicate garments can become damaged if your pegs grip too harshly. For silks, satins and delicate items of clothing, go for soft grip and gentle pegs.


Durability and weather resistance is important, as all too often the springs snap under a heavy weight, leaving your clothes a crumpled mess on the floor! Wooden clothes pegs are usually very strong but they’re rarely weather resistant. Ensure you read reviews before you make a purchase.


Ensure you get a clothesline that matches your largest laundry load. A 9/10kg drum holds a lot of washing. If you use a washing line that is too small this will mean you have to do multiple, smaller loads; or overload your clothesline, which leads to longer drying times, potentially wrinkles and much more of your time.


Sharing pegs on the line might be quicker when hanging out and save line space, however, it’s not recommended to give your clothes the best chance to dry quickly. Give your laundry enough space between items to allow better airflow for drying and to avoid causing wrinkles. The more airflow the better. Lighter items, such as gym clothes, shirts and pillow cases dry much quicker than heavier items so they don’t need as much space between items. Hanging your clothes out on a sunny day even in winter will dry your clothes quicker so the spacing is not as much of an issue.


As soon as you take your washing out of your washing machine you must shake them and make sure nothing has got tangled. Sometimes when you grab your wet laundry you will find a pair of trousers that has a leg inside out or a shirt with one sleeve tangled inside itself. Pull it back into shape and give it a light shake. but be mindful that items can stretch when wet so be careful not to shake to hard.


We all hate unsightly peg marks on shoulders and shirt hems, but which is better – hanging clothes upside-down or right-side-up? Hanging your items upside-down will mean you won’t stretch the shoulders/arms of shirts, or the waist of trousers. The best way for shirts is to hang them on the line with a coat hanger, as this reduces the chance of wrinkles and makes the so much easier to iron.

The old fashioned saying is

If you wear it on top hang it from the top

If you wear it on the bottom hang it from the bottom

But this rule doesn’t work for everything, sometimes you just need to make your own judgement call with laundry hacks.

The best way to hang sheets on the line is to hang your sheets over multiple lines to give them the best airflow for drying. This also works for heavy items, such as blankets and throws. Hanging heavy items over multiple lines will spread the weight so your clothesline stays taught for longer. If you only have one clothesline, try to hang your heavy items lengthways on the line so the weight is spread out as much as possible.

Check out some of my laundry favourites

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Lynsey Queen Of Clean
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