Monday, February 9, 2015

Dryer Balls DIY

I found a cool tutorial on making your own dryer balls ~ from 100% wool yarn.  And would be money saving in the long run.  The original link I followed was to  Jillee has tons of great ideas for the home ~ well worth looking into her blog and exploring!

In January, Amy went and bought me 2 skeins of "Love This Wool" from Hobby Lobby.  I double checked the label because I had read the balls would not "felt" properly with a wool blend.  These particular skeins were 90% wool, 10% acrylic.  We returned them last week and got the same brand but 100% wool.  The 2 different skeins were side by side at HL ~ very misleading!

Anyway,  out of the 2 skeins I thought I would get enough dryer balls for 2 sets ~ one for me and one for Mom (who strongly hinted that she needed these too). However, after I round them into balls, I got 5 balls of approximately tennis ball size ~ a set is 4-5 balls.  So back to Hobby Lobby for more yarn.

After you get your ball shape ~ you secure the yarn.  I followed Jillee's instructions and then repeated the process several times for each ball.  I didn't want to have the dryer balls that disentigrated into a tangled mess.

I tied them into a leg of knee high hose, tied acrylic yarn in between each ball and started washing and drying in hot water.  Then I decided to take a short cut ~ put the hose wrapped balls into a big ceramic popcorn bowl (thanks Brenda) and poured boiling water over them ~ then weighted them down with a plate and my metal utensil holder, to keep them under the water.  After several hours, I dried them.  I repeated that process twice.  The 1st and 5th time, I washed them in the washer.

Now, they are "felted".  I was a little apprehensive to take off the hose because I still had visions of them falling apart.  Not only did they not fall apart, they were felted to the hose and I had to peel them off.  One ball still has a nice chunk of hose on it that I can't get off.

And why make these ~~~~~ glad you asked.....they are supposed to cut your drying time in half, using a natural product is better for your clothes than dryer sheets loaded with chemicals, this set of balls should last a year (each skein was $5.99, I used 2 for the set, so $11.98 for a year instead of $3-4 a month for dryer sheets and fabric softener. Knowing that I will need another set in a year, I can now watch for this yarn to go on sale instead of paying full price!)

I did scent mine with lavender essential oil ~ just 3-4 drops on each one.  Laundry day is today, so they will get their first work out! 

ready to be washed & dried

the finished product!  They shrunk in the process.  Use all 5 per load!

the hose stuck to the ball.
The hardest part of this whole process ~ getting the hose off the balls!

First load done ~ 45 minutes instead of an hour and no unraveled balls!  And no static in our knit shirts and sweaters.  Load in now is jeans ~ so they will get a good workout this time ~ next load is towels.  I'll report back!

****I did 4 loads ~ the drying time on each load was cut by 20 or more minutes.  This includes the 2 loads of jeans/bath towels.  I imagine in the summer, that drying time will reduce more with the lighter weight clothing.  And there was no static in any of our clothing.  So far, this is a successful experiment! 

1 comment:

  1. You've sold me! I'm gonna make some of these!


Welcome to the farm ~ we are a blended family with 7 children (3 are married), 4 grandsons, 5 dogs, 3 rabbits, and 15 chickens living on 3 acres in Georgia. I love crafting, sewing, cooking & canning, recipes of all kinds, reading, playing with my little buddies, family time, travel, pinterest and most of all the Lord.