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Wool Dryer Balls

This natural laundry alternative will save you time, energy, and money.

wool dryer balls in bowl over blue blanket

Photography: Anusha Rajeswaran

Source: Martha Stewart

Introduction

This idea comes from our friend Anusha Rajeswaran of Fish and Bull. Wool dryer balls are good for you and the environment. They reduce static cling, dry clothes faster, and will give your threads a natural scent with a few drops of essential oil. We like lavender, lemon, and bergamot. To use, place three or four wool dryer balls into the dryer with your laundry. Safety tip: Essential oils, although safely used in dryer balls, pose a fire risk so only use a few drops per dryer ball and wait at least one hour until completely dry before using with your laundry. Dryer balls last up to two years.

 

For more ideas, scroll through our entire collection of DIY household cleaning supplies and upcycled uses for nylon stockings.

materials

  • Wool roving

  • Essential oils (Pictured: ArtNaturals Lemon Essential Oil, $12.30 for 4 oz., amazon.com.)

  • Nylon stockings

  • Scissors

  • Paper towels

steps

  1. Wind a thin strip of wool roving into a ball, rotating directions to create a uniform ball shape. (Note: Use a light-colored wool so that the color doesn't bleed onto your laundry.) Don't worry if it is not a perfectly smooth ball. 

    wool dryer ball project winding thin strip of wool
  2. Once it is the size of a tennis ball, tuck the last piece of wool roving into the ball to secure it in place.

    wool dryer ball project wool wrapped into tennis ball shape
  3. With scissors, cut the footed ends off the nylon stockings. Start by dropping one ball into the stocking and tying a knot to secure it in the nylon. Continue until all wool balls are secured in stocking.

    wool dryer balls dropped into nylon stockings with knots
  4. Toss the knotted stocking into the washing machine, turned to a high-heat setting. (Tip: You can also throw it in with a load of laundry at the same setting if you don't want to waste water.) Transfer to a dryer and let dry on a normal setting.

    three wool dryer balls on blue striped blanket
  5. Cut the wool balls out of stocking; they should be felted and feel firm to the touch. Add one drop each of your favorite essential oils to the dryer ball. For a fresh clean scent, we recommend using one drop of lavender, lemon, and bergamot essential oil. Allow the oil to dry for one hour before use.

    wool dryer balls in white bowl over blue sheet

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