Laundry Room Makeover, Part 3: The System {The Drying Rack}

Best Wall Mounted Drying Rack Ever

I spend a lot of time in the laundry room.  It’s like my home-within-a-home.  And this space serves as a passageway from the main living area to the powder room, which puts the contents of the laundry room on display for guests.

Two very good reasons to give some attention to this small, hardworking room–don’t you think?

Sorting Closet, Before and After
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The Sorting Closet, before and after.

We’ve already looked at the first few stages of our Yankee Homestead Laundry Room Makeover…

Laundry Room Makeover

A Good System is Key

I’m all about systems.  I won’t ramble on about them here, except to point out that if there is any place in the house where a good system is important, surely it is the laundry room.

Over the next few Laundry Room Makeover posts, I’ll share about my own Laundry System.

wash dry iron
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Wash, dry, iron. A good system.

Laundry Room Engineering

The Sorting Closet project successfully addressed the issue of how laundry was handled prior to entering the washing machine and dryer.

Next, I moved on to the process of what happens to laundry when it exits these machines.

Let’s start with another of my favorite features of this space: The Wall-Mounted Drying Rack.

The Problem: Lack of Floor Space

Obviously, every laundry room needs a way to dry clothes that cannot go in the dryer.

(Unless you hang laundry outside, which is fantastic!  I’m not there yet.)  And even at that, there are certain, shall we say “unmentionables”, that we would not wish to put on display for neighbors and visitors and such.

As I’ve mentioned before, our laundry room is short on usable floor space.  The room is actually a decent size, but all floor space is challenged by the presence of a doorway, shelves, or traffic path, not to mention the washer, dryer, and utility sink

That doesn’t leave much room to erect a standard drying rack.  Furthermore, I find free standing drying racks to be problematic on several counts.

Free Standing Drying Racks are Problematic

  • Often unstable
  • Take up lots of floor space
  • Rod positions can make it hard to maximize space
  • Where to store the rack?
  • Setting up and taking down can be cumbersome

The Solution: Wall-mounted Drying Rack

So if you’re tracking with my thought process here, you’ll easily come to the same conclusion as I (eventually) did: we needed a wall-mounted drying rack.

I love the wooden drying racks from Ballard Designs.  (This one from Better Homes & Gardens is pretty, too.)  But for one thing, they’re expensive.  And for another thing, even though I love the look, I wasn’t sure it was right for the space.  I didn’t exactly want to call attention to a rack when not in use, especially since guests regularly use the laundry room as a sort of hallway.

Enter The Container Store.

Container Store
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Have I mentioned my great affinity for this store?  And have I mentioned that The Container Store recently opened a new location in a town nearby, very close to Mr. Native Texan’s office, and in the very shopping center where a favorite Date Night Spot, The Counter, happens to be located?  

Anyway, The Container Store sells a wonderfully sturdy, super-handy, wall-mounted drying rack that turned out to be the perfect solution for our space.  Also available from Amazon, here.

We mounted it under the window, between The Sorting Closet and the Pantry Shelves (more on those later).  When folded away, no one even notices it.

When opened, it accommodates all our drying needs.  I love it!

I’m actually considering mounting a second, identical rack below our current rack, now that the boys’ clothes are getting larger.  Sweater weather can present a challenge, too, with more items to dry at one time.

Other Handy Features

Hooks 

In addition to the “rods”, this drying rack includes six handy hooks, visible in the picture above with the red ironing board.

  • These hooks are perfect for drying wet dish towels, kitchen cloths and other wet, dirty items prior to tossing them into our laundry bags.
Drying Rack Hooks
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This wet kitchen towel is drying on a hook, before heading to its respective dirty laundry bag.  

  • They’re also very useful for drying wet swim suits and towels during the summer.
  • And of course, they offer bonus drying space for clean, wet clothes.  Like “unmentionables”, for example.

Hangers

Of course the hangers don’t come with the rack, but adding wet clothes on hangers is another way I often increase the drying capacity of this super-sturdy rack.

The Verdict

I’m so pleased with this rack, and am delighted not to have to wrestle with a free-standing one anymore (or figure out where to store it!).  It’s been the perfect solution for air drying clothes, towels and more in our laundry room.

Update (2017): This drying rack has become a key part of my efficient laundry system.  I’ve used the heck out of it, hanging jeans, sweaters, cloth diapers, wool diaper covers, athletic shorts and pants and all kinds of synthetic materials (to reduce laundry static).  For over three years, I have loaded it up regularly with wet laundry and then added even more clothes on hangers and the rack is still going strong!

Drying Rack
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What’s the best part of your laundry system?  

Next time I’ll share about my system for everyone’s favorite laundry chore, ironing.  Stay tuned!

photo credits

 

Best Wall Mounted Drying Rack Ever
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Kathleen Henderson

Let's get real! I’m Kathleen Henderson, your Natural Living Mentor. I’m on a mission to help families see the joy in real food, while finding natural remedies and creating a nontoxic home. Learn more about my story >>

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