Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Photo Essay: Laundry in Shanghai

One thing that struck me in Shanghai is that laundry is everywhere, except the strict business area along the riverfront. Otherwise, in any halfway residential area, laundry is hung out to dry. Not only on balconies and from windows, but publicly between two poles on the sidewalk.

They still have phone booths in Shanghai, and sure enough, they also serve for airing bedding.

Parking signs can also be useful for putting up a laundry line.

Why string up a laundry line when a telephone wire serves just as well?

Here a typical apartment complex in the Hongkou district of Shanghai. It almost looks like little children have been hung out to dry (especially 4th set of windows from the left, 2nd row from the top.)

If you can't hang the laundry out the window, you open the window wide.

If you ain't got a line, you use a pole.

Even in a picturesque centuries-old Chinese garden in Suzhou, laundry will peek through a latticed window in the garden wall.

Taking a break from all that laundry - bedding being aired on a street in the French Concession.


  1. Interesting observation. Love the photos!

  2. These laundry-hanging habits put the French to shame. In France they may fill the window, but that's it. I wonder how often the clothes hung along the sidewalk are stolen?

  3. Beautiful photos, Annette! Laundry can be so picturesque. In Turkey I remember seeing a row of men's undershirts, shorts and socks with one Turkish flag hanging in the midst. It's one of my favorite shots.

  4. Herrlich, so anarchistisch, so regelfrei. Schoene Fotos und gute Idee.

  5. Great pictures and such a different view of Shanghai!

  6. What a GREAT post!!!!! Oh boy- if this is a foretaste of the rest of the blogathon- I know I'm going to enjoy each and every post you have!!!

  7. I can't believe it. Amazing. Gorgeous and so...different. LOL!! It's like a true cultural experience.