Monday, February 06, 2006

Laundry Overwhelming You?

After a full day of washing and hanging clothes on the line, I was feeling a bit grumpy. (Good thing I put some beans and rice in the crockpot earlier--just like the traditional washday!)

Then I stumbled on to this interesting pictoral post at Sarah's Daughter (with more here). Apparently European women approach their laundry with more old-fashioned care than we Americans.

I'd heard of a mangle before, but thought it was one of those tools only Martha Stewart uses in real life. After reading the article, I've put it at the top of my yard sale list. Unlikely, but then you never know...

Edited: Or maybe not. Debbie spotted the rotary iron in the Williams-Sonoma catalog. Who knew a household tool could be so pricey?


Anonymous said...

If i recall, WilliamsSonoma has one in their latest catalog. OF COURSE it is pricey.


Anonymous said...

WOW that's a bit more up to date than the old one I remember my grandmother having in the backyard! Which was exactly the smae as the one they have in the local living history VICTORIAN museum!

Anonymous said...

Well Meredith, I am a laundry nut. Cooking, Food, blech. Not my favorite home chore. I am, this very second, boiling my dish towels after reading your link to Sarah's Daughter.

Makes me think...mangles are prob affordable in Europe. now I'm on a search. I've been wanting a pro shirt/pants press (big 2 surface ironing board you see at the prof. laundry)

Thanks, this is fun. Debbie

marycelery said...


I do own a mangle. It works a treat, especially on cloth napkins and table clothes.

Here is how I found mine:

1. Ask at every thrift store and Church sale. Most of the time, they don't know what it is or how to ensure it works. In this case, they always go to the dump. I got mine for $15 in perfect condition with additional roller pads.

2. I also printed up little "cards" (business card size) that said I was looking for a mangle, with a line drawing of a mangle (I don't remember where I found the clip art) my name and phone number. I handed these out to all charity stores and Church sales. I could have purchased 2 additional mangles, but didn't.

3. These are more prevelant in the mid-West and East. It took me 10 years to purchase my mangle. I lived in California, Utah and Texas. No luck in any of those areas.

Good luck.

Miss Mary

Anonymous said...

thank you miss mary!

Roberta said...

We had a spinner when we lived in England. I loved it and when hanging the clothes out on the line the first item was practically dry by the time the last was hung. The photo brought back memories. Thanks for the links. :)

CallaLilly said...

My mother had a mangle, but who knows what happened to it. I would love to have one, but it would definitely have to be a used one. I would never dream that a new one would be so expensive.

Meredith said...

Miss Mary, I'm in awe of your creative bargain-hunting! Thanks for sharing your story.

Miss Meg said...

I am trying to do my laundry "intentionally" -- which means checking the pocketes. Felt all accomplished about that. I am thankful that I'm not a competitive person or I'd be panting up and down stairs after reading this! [the laundry is on the lowest floor -- all the clothes, bedding, etc are on the top. Of course.]

Nan said...

Look at estate sales in nearly every big city. Invariably, they can be found in the dark under the basement stairs (I'm in the midwest, don't know where those without basements put them). Most people don't know what they are and don't care. It's just one heavy piece that has to be moved. I have seven (the collections started after a thermostat went out and I realized I needed parts). Never paid over $25 for one. But the moving is a bite.
I've tried the new 2K ones. I like the old ones better. Besides the tablecloths and napkins, try mangling your pillow cases with lavender water. Oooh, heaven. And they are great on jeans and tee shirts.
Good luck, you will never be sorry.