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If you're in the market for a traditional looking wooden airer (a.k.a clothes horse) - you've come to the right page.

Here's 5 of the best of the UK market in 2022. We've tried to choose a variety of designs to fit your home and budget.

Our Top 5 Wooden Airers of 2022

Foppapedretti Octopus Clothes Airer - Beech Wood
Foppapedretti Octopus Clothes Airer - Beech Wood
Mounting type; mounting au sol; . The Octopus clothes airer from Foppapedretti is compact and functional.
VOUNOT Clothes Airers Indoor, 24m Folding Laundry Drying Rack, Metal, Imitation Wood Design
VOUNOT Clothes Airers Indoor, 24m Folding Laundry Drying Rack, Metal, Imitation Wood Design
The clothes airer has 24 meter drying space and with a mesh plane.; The laundry drying rack is very convenient to use and does not require assembly.
£64.99 −£42.31 £22.68
Foppapedretti Supergulliver Clothes Airer, 175 x 120 x 189 cm Solid Wood 189x122x174 cm White/Brown
Foppapedretti Supergulliver Clothes Airer, 175 x 120 x 189 cm Solid Wood 189x122x174 cm White/Brown
The foldable clothes airer Supergulliver is perfect for big quantities of laundry; It’s very steady thanks to the solid wooden frame with painted aluminium rods
£197.12 −£30.60 £166.52

Last update on 2024-03-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Best Wooden
Clothes Airers Reviewed

If you're looking for a space-saving wooden airer check out this Foppapedretti Octabus.

I love the name...could you guess it's from Italy?! But hereafter, I'll refer to it as "The Octopus" 🙂

The Octopus' design is like an umbrella. There are 18 wooden arms (or tentacles!) and each can hold 1kg of laundry - making 18kg in total (or two large loads of washing!)

Foppapedretti Octobus airer

When the airer is not in use, the arms collapse away into the tube and you can wheel it away. 

This makes it very portable and you can store it in places like the bottom of a wardrobe / closet.

Check out the video below to see it in action.

Ingenious, right?

What I lobe about this design is it's very similar to the washing line's we have outside in the garden.

That means you don't have to spend ages stooped over like with the clothes horse designs.

With this one, you can either fold the clothes over the arms or put them on hangars. 4 of the arms have little notches to stop the hangers from sliding off.

Now, the downside to this functional work of art is the price. I can see many people being put off paying 2/3 times more than conventional designs.

But if you want something that helps you get the laundry done quicker, holds a lot of clothes and folds away out of sight - the friendly Octopus is a great choice.


  • Innovative Italian Design
  • Holds 18kg of laundry
  • Easy on the back when hanging laundry
  • Can put hangars on it
  • Folds away easily & portable
  • Small footprint


  • Expensive

For more of a traditional clothes horse design - here is the Vounut airer.

An important thing to note with this design is it's "wood effect".

All the poles and slats are actually made out of metal with a wood coating.

And don't worry - it comes assembled so you don't need to put it all together!

Vounut Clothes Horse

The drying space is 165cm x 56cm x 90cm. Or 5 1/2 feet long and 3 foot off the ground if that's easier to visualise!

There are 18 slats on the top drying area, and then two smaller side wings underneath. There's also a net across the middle for things that won't hang so well like hats, gloves and cuddly toys!

The thing I like about this particular model is it folds up like a deck chair. It's only 14cm thick when folded, so it's easy to place against a wall or in a wardrobe.


  • Traditional Clothes Horse Design
  • Sturdy
  • Lots of drying space
  • Space for things that won't hang so easily
  • Folds away flat
  • Elegant design


  • Not as portable as some models on our list

If you've got the right decor - and the right style - this vintage clothes drier might be right up your street.

This is for those who want a clothes pulley to get everything up and out of the way...and are handy with a tool box (or at least know somebody who is!).

This wooden rail airer was all the rage in the U.K from the 18th century to the early 20th century.

Sheila Maid Rail Airer

Then tumble driers came along and these drying rails fell out of fashion. Until Sheila Johnson brought them back in 1986 to counter the increase in fossil fuels that tumble driers use.

History lesson aside, these drying racks are just as practical today as they were 250 years ago.

They attach to ceiling joists and use a pulley system to get your washing up and out of the way. Ideal if you have pets or young kids crashing around.

The four wood slats are kiln-dried pine wood. That means there's no need to treat them.

You can also cut them easy with a hacksaw to fit your laundry drying area. Just be sure to move the rollers closer together when you fix it to the ceiling.

The drying rack can hold 8 KG of laundry - which is about a full load for most households.

The obvious disadvantage here is it does need fitting. But if you're looking for something that's practical and stylish - this could be for you.


  • Traditional Victorian design
  • Sturdy 8KG of drying space
  • Keeps clothes up and out of the way
  • Kiln-dried pine wood 
  • Elegant design


  • Needs fixing to the ceiling
  • Won't suit some houses

Next up is an incredibly functional and stylish concertina airer from Lakeland.

I'm kind of cheating here because it's not 100% wood...instead they've decided to replace the inner rungs with strong aluminum.

This makes the rails sturdier and also prevents marking or staining of your clothes.

Lakeland Concertina Airer

And it's a good job it's reinforced as this airer can hold an amazing 15 KG of laundry! Which is about 2 loads from an average-sized washing machine.

What I also like about this one is that it's tall and compact. Standing 152 cm tall it's just over 5 feet...and only 50cm deep.

There are two grooves in the base so you can adjust the height. The other setting is shorter and wider - which you might want to use if your drying something a bit bulkier like winter clothes.

And when it's not in use it folds down to just 14cm high. So it is a a real space saver!

It comes flat and there's absolutely no assembly required.

The only downside is at 60 cm wide some people might find the rails too narrow. However - there is 6 meters of drying room spread over 4 levels.


  • Concertina design
  • Holds 15KG of laundry
  • Space Saver
  • Folds to 14cm high 
  • 6 meters of drying space


  • Might be too narrow for some people

To round out our list we have to include this traditional 3-panel clothes horse design. 

It's the kind my gran had and my mother used to put sheets over to make a den for me and my sisters!

This particular clothes horse is made from top grade, salted soft wood.

I want to say it's pine, but that would be a guess!

Anyway, it's smooth and untreated  - which means the wood will not mark or stain your clothes in any way.

As you can see from the picture, a lot of work has gone into the tenon joints to make it strong and sturdy.

Each panel is just over a meter tall and 60cm wide. It folds down to just 8 - 9cm high, so it's easy to stash away in a cupboard or wardrobe.

The design lets you place it in a zig-zag or in a "U" shape. This gives you a couple of options depending on your drying space.

And another good feature with this one is the wood is square cut. That helps stop the clothes from slipping off which is dead annoying.

The only downside with this design is the height. At just over a meter tall it's probably going to be too small to hang sheets and big towels.

But if you want something that's built to last l and won't fold under pressure like a cheap wire clothes horse - this could be for you.


  • Traditional wood clothes horse
  • Strong and sturdy
  • Folds to only 9cm high 
  • Doesn't mark or stain clothes


  • Only 1 meter tall

Wooden Airer FAQs

What is a clothes airer called?

A clother airer is also called a clothes horse, clothes rack, and clothes maiden. In Scotland it's also known as a Winter Dyke, where "dyke" means a wall.

Where is the best place to put a clothes airer?

The best place to put a clothes airer is somewhere that gets direct sunlight. You should also ensure that the room is well ventilated with good air circulation.

Why is a clothes Airer called a maiden?

"Clothes Maiden" was first used in Victorian times in the north of England. It's believed the phrase originates from the shorter "Clothes Maid".

Will clothes dry on an Airer?

Yes, clothes will dry on an airer provided they have enough space and are in a well ventilated room. To dry clothes quicker, put them on hangars and turn clothes over that are taking longer to dry.

Is Drying clothes indoors bad?

Drying clothes indoors can be considered "bad" because it releases a lot of moisture inside your home. This raises the humidity level and can cause mould, dust mites, and trigger allergies and asthma.