Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Wool Dryer Balls

February 2017 Blog

Wow, what a La Niña winter we are having here in Polson, MT.  Each day has a little or a lot of snow to add to the accumulation.  Glad to have made it through the winter so far, and with the arrival of February, I can start to plant some seeds under grow lights, and make myself believe that spring is coming.  I will soon be starting De Padrone peppers and white lavender plants.  Would love to start them today, but I don’t want them to get too tall and spindly.

Today’s blog is about dryer balls. I recently learned how easy they are to make and would love to share that with you.  Now you are probably saying, why should I go to the trouble and expense of making dryer balls when I am perfectly happy with dryer sheets? Well, as with everything in life right now, there is some controversy with dryer sheets. Many, not all, feel that the chemicals used to combat static and to add scents to the laundry, are harmful to humans.  I am not a chemist, so even though I have an opinion, I will just list a couple of sites that explain both sides of the argument, so that you can make up your own mind.

One thing that I can take a stand on is that dryer balls are more economical than buying dryer sheets each month.  They just keep doing their job and I have read that they can last up to 1,500 dryer loads. Plus, they don’t add to landfills.  So, considering that they are chemical and dye free, earth friendly, frugal and low maintenance, I am all for them.

I have included a link with full instructions on how to make the dryer balls, but here is a quick run down.

Get a skein of 100% wool yarn.
Wrap the yarn around your fingers a dozen or so times.
Switch direction and do it again.
Continue wrapping until the ball is as big as a tennis ball.
Make two or three or balls.
Now the fun part, place the balls in an old knee high panty hose.
Place a knot between each ball so that they are not touching.
Place the knee high in boiling water for 10 minutes.
Remove the panty hose and wash the balls in your washing machine until felting occurs.
Felting is just the process of the wool blending together.
Voila, you now have dryer balls.
Use 3 or 4 in your dryer and just leave them there from wash to wash.
You can even add a few drops of your favorite essential oil if you wish.

Super easy to make, but if you do not have the inclination, they are available all over the internet and of course on my Etsy page.

Finished Dryer Balls

Here are the links I promised you:

How to make dryer balls:

How do they work:

Are they safe; yes:

Are they safe; no:

My research has shown that dryer balls may not be as effective on static cling as dryer sheets.  Luckily, today’s fabrics seem to be less synthetic than the old days and do not accumulate as much static.  I did read that a small muslin bag of Himalayan salt can be added to the dryer load to mitigate static.  I tried this but have not found out anything conclusive.

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