Not hanging onto hangers (Day 219)…


I hate, hate, HATE wire hangers. Not only do they look ugly, they leave annoying little pockmarks on whatever you’ve hung on them — especially nice cashmere stuff — and they always rattle around and fall down to the closet floor at the slightest provocation, usually to someplace you can’t reach that’s covered in lint and cat hair and cobwebs.

Although some cities recycle wire hangers, Toronto doesn’t. And while my eco-friendly dry cleaners do take them back, there’s still a part of me that feels these things should never have been invented in the first place.

Plastic hangers are better in terms of form and function, but plastic itself as a material isn’t very eco-friendly, which is why I’m going to try to stick to wooden hangers from now on — hopefully used ones from Freecycle or Goodwill. Made from a natural source, they’ll last longer and apparently they can help prevent moth infestations, too!

Photo of wooden hangers nicked from this website.

10 Responses to Not hanging onto hangers (Day 219)…

  1. senseofbalance says:

    Tailors prefer wooden hangers too. Make friends with a few and you’ll have a lasting source.

  2. Mark says:

    Make friends with tailors and maybe you’ll have access to snazzy new clothes, too, when everyone else is wearing whatever is left when fashion goes the way of the dodo. Even better, befriend a cobbler. Everyone needs shoes!

    But more to the point, why not make do with whatever clothes-hanging technology you have in your closet now? I have a hard time believing you really harbor such fierce emotions toward wire hangers. How many of us drive SUVs because we really hate, HATE compact cars or bicycles or walking? Is that the same kind of hatred of technology people in war zones feel toward, say, land mines?

    Thanks for the opportunity to rant. And, as always, my respects and admiration for your efforts — and the public nature of your successes and failures — is unbound.

  3. teaspoon says:

    I think this is a great idea. I am, sinfully, pretty attached to plastic hangers. I don’t like wire hangers because, as you said, they leave marks on my clothes. But the wooden ones take up far too much space in my smallish closet. And my slightly OCD personality dictates that all hangers in my closet must be the same size and shape if not the same color (but wouldn’t that be cool!) and it’s hard to find lots of matching wood hangers. Okay, sorry for taking up so much space for that useless comment! 🙂

  4. Leah Ingram says:

    I just found out about a company that offers recycled and recycleable hangers to dry cleaners so that you can avoid the wire-hanger dilemma all together. (I’m writing a story about greening your house so I received press information about it. I do not rep the company.) Called EcoHangers, here’s what the PR person sent to me: “Hanger Network ( is a New York-based company that has developed a product called the EcoHanger, a 100% biodegradable hanger that is made of recycled paper. It is distributed free to consumers through a network of more than 35,000 dry cleaners.” I understand that you can get a form from that website to give to your local dry cleaner so he/she can start using these EcoHangers.

    I, too, am living a newly green (and frugal) life, which I’m documenting here:

    I hope you’ll stop by.

    Good luck.

    Leah Ingram

  5. anna banana says:

    when i worked at a (not eco-friendly) dry cleaner’s for a few years, there were customers who would bring their clothes in on their own hangers, and after we cleaned their clothes, we would put the clothes back on the customer’s hangers (usually nice wood ones, but occasionally plastic ones, too). just a thought to reduce the number of wire hangers that enter your home.

  6. chile says:

    Hey Vanessa, I’ve nominated you for a brand new blogger award called “Change begins at home”! Come check out the details here.

  7. Theresa says:

    I’m glad you like the wooden hangers as much as I do, Vanessa. I find hanging my clothes on wooden hangers also makes me treat my clothes better in other ways too, which is sort of a weird but nice bonus.

  8. Hellcat13 says:

    Agreed – wire hangers are wretched. Great way to ruin a beautiful sweater. Everything gets skewed out of shape. Plus they end up leaving greasy marks on the bars they hang on – sweep your hand over the bar or under the curve of the hanger if you don’t know what I’m talking about.

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