Dryer balls are always an eye catcher at our shows, and I’m often asked how I make them. Feel free to giggle at any time during the narrative… I totally understand 🙂
Dryer balls are an all natural, cost saving alternative to expensive fabric softener and dryer sheets. They also help your clothes dry faster, saving money on electricity, something we all love to do. Dryer balls are naturally unscented, however by adding a couple drops of essential oil it is possible to naturally add fresh and pleasant scents to your clothes. They are a vital part of our all natural laundry system.
Here’s what you need:
1 oz wool for each ball (I use carded wool for the core and merino roving for the cover, but you can use wool yarn if you wish)
1 Hot water
Nylon (knee high or pantyhose)
String or acrylic yarn
And here is my step by step method to make the dryer balls:
Step 1: Pull off a large hand full of carded wool (about 3/4 oz). If you have non-machine washable 100% wool sweaters you can cut strips and wind into a ball instead. If you are using 100% wool yarn (not superwash yarn) you can skip to step 3.
Step 2: Dip each ball of wool into very hot water long enough to thoroughly wet the wool.
Step 3: Wrap each ball of wet wool tightly with wool yarn, making as close to a ball shape as possible. If desired you can continue to wrap yarn to completely cover core, then skip to step 5.
Step 4: For outer covering, pull about a 6 inch length of wool roving, with accent colors if desired.
Step 5: Wrap roving completely around ball. Using a generous amount of soap and warm water, work up a lather and rub ball until the roving shrinks around the core.
Step 5: Put the ball into a nylon and tie between each ball using a piece of string or non-wool yarn.
:Step 6: Run the nylon full of dryer balls through 1-2 wash and dryer cycles until they shrink by about 40% and the wool fibers felt together. Hint: If using a high efficiency washing machine I find that it is best to soak the nylon full of dryer balls thoroughly before washing as the machines do not contain enough water to properly wet the balls. Remove the finished dryer balls from the nylons and enjoy!
Questions or comments? I’d love to hear from you!