“She seeketh wool” — DIY — wool dryer balls

As the warmer months approach here’s another DIY thing to consider: wool dryer balls. It’s exciting too, how this fits in so perfectly with one of the current endeavours: “she seeketh wool and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands”.

I hadn’t even heard of wool dryer balls until quite recently, but they act as a fabric softener and theoretically as an energy saver as well. There’s some divided opinion about that. Some people swear by them–have their dryer time cut by 50%–others don’t detect a difference at all. I think it may just have to do with the volume of balls you’ve got in your dryer. 😉 Some people use up to a dozen for large loads!

Back a few months ago I was all set to order some wool from a friend but since shipping was going to be more expensive than the wool I decided against it. Then while shopping at JoAnn’s I spontaneously bought a couple skeins of fisherman’s wool with 50% and %40 off coupons. It made 4 balls and *still* cost me about $12 to make. One thing I can say for sure is that they are wonderful for softening clothes. Commercial fabric softeners are filled with harmful chemicals and aren’t good for your dryer either, so I hadn’t been using anything, and definitely noticed a difference right away when using these. Not sure about the drying time yet.

After spending what I did and then going back to find out what the price for wool plus shipping would be to get unwashed wool from my friend I’ve realized it will be much less expensive to go ahead and get some from her, even with shipping being what it is. I wasn’t keen on the idea of having to work much with the wool before using it, but in consideration and remembrance of this verse “she seeketh wool…and worketh willingly…” I’m so excited to make the plunge! especially if it means we will spend less on energy for running the dryer and the a/c to compensate for the dryer.

Some of you are way ahead of me and are already only hanging out all your clothes. Can’t save more on dryer time than that! My man is going to put up a new line for me (last one broke), but if you have a dryer I still encourage getting at least enough wool for a few balls, for the softening it will do for your clothes if you simply toss them in for an hour on the “no heat” setting before hanging them out, since hanging clothes out usually means stiff clothes! I’m also still planning on making my dozen balls so that I can use them on rainy days or terribly busy days where hanging them out just isn’t an option.

When I’ve got my dozen I’ll be sure and let my captivated (I’m sure!) audience know how well they work on cutting dryer time. 😉

For a picture tutorial on how to make your own dryer balls from yarn, go here. I’ll be doing a good deal of searching to learn how to process wool into roving, and for anyone interested in that process and knowledge will share about that once I have figured it out and executed it. So excited about blessing my husband by saving where I can!

Can any of you think of ways to save more money by conserving energy, or other ways?

Do any of you have experience with wool dryer balls? How do they work for you? Is your dryer time reduced?

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