This plastic dryer ball seemed like a good example of another plastic my life could really do without so I chose to make some felted dryer balls. Most online tutorials specifically mention the use of 100% wool for the reason that it felts. But there are other fibers that also felt.
Felted dryer balls:
Are safe for people with sensitive skin
Work as a natural fabric softener
Can be used with cloth diapers
Reduce static cling in your clothes
Rotate your clothes, providing better air circulation and cutting down on your total drying time
- making these an energy efficient, green product.
For years now I've had a flower vase that I have been filling with scraps of yarn that aren't really big enough to knit with so I decided to begin there.
Remove the yarn from your fingers and wrap the yarn around your bundle the opposite direction.
Then just continue turning the ball and wrapping your yarn until you have a ball about twice the size of what you hope your ball will eventually be.
Some people choose to scent their dryer balls, I didn't because I didn't have any lavender oil yet. I also had plans to test these out like reusable dryer sheets and see how they work in that fashion.
I had a wide variety of fibers that I used to make my dryer balls (angora, baby alpaca, wool). Yarn brands like Noro, Manos Del Uruguay, Malabrigo, and Lamb's Pride were used.
As I mentioned some of this yarn had a bit of dust left from being kicked up on the dirt road in front of my mother-in-law's house. So I opted to do my first wash with some of my homemade, chemical-free, laundry detergent.
I didn't want to COMPLETELY waste energy so I threw in some UnPaper towels that needed to be cleaned with them.
Set your washing machine to your hottest setting with the most possible agitation. Mine is set to hot, second rinse
For the third trip through I allowed them to be washed on their own.
The amount of efficiency these will increase your dryer by varies from dryer to dryer. Generally dryer balls help cut drying time by 30 - 50%.
Store your finished dryer balls in a well-ventilated location. Inside plastic would not only take away from the intention of reducing the plastic in your life and home but not provide enough ventilation for your dryer balls.