Then they were hung up on poles or clothes lines to air dry, or sometimes just spread out on clean grass, bushes, or trees. Before the advent of the washing machine, laundry was often done in a communal setting.
Villages across Europe that could afford it built a wash-house, sometimes known by the French name of lavoir.
Laundry processes are often done in a room reserved for that purpose; in an individual home this is referred to as a laundry room or utility room.
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The launderers were protected to some extent from rain, and their travel was reduced, as the facilities were usually at hand in the village or at the edge of a town.
These facilities were public and available to all families, and usually used by the entire village.An apartment building or student hall of residence may have a shared laundry facility such as a tvättstuga.