Contributor post written by Kelly from New Leaf Wellness.
Looking for an all-natural alternative to store-bought dryer sheets? Wool dryer balls are your answer! Not only are wool dryer balls all-natural, they’re so easy to make!
Benefits of Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
- Shorten drying time
- Reduce wrinkles
- Decrease static
- Soften laundry
- Save money
- Fragrance-free (or naturally scented with a few drops of essential oils)
You can buy wool dryer balls on Amazon or Etsy, but they’re also incredibly easy to make yourself. All you need to make your own is 20 minutes and four basic supplies: wool yarn, a crochet hook, scissors, and pantyhose.
I’ll admit that I know nothing about using yarn to knit and crochet, but I know a heck of a lot about doing laundry. Between me, my husband, and our three young daughters (ages 4 and under), laundry is just a part of our everyday life.
Doing laundry isn’t exactly what I’d call “fun,” but an easy, practical craft sure is. These homemade wool dryer balls rank up there with my homemade coconut oil lotions and sugar scrubs. They’re a simple DIY that I absolutely love and want to share with all of my friends.
Actually, I think making these wool dryer balls would be a really fun craft to make with friends. I made my first two wool dryer balls with the help of my super-crafty mom and then asked for a crochet hook and wool yarn for my birthday so I could make more.
The more dryer balls you have, the more they will bounce around with your laundry and help it to dry quickly. Six to eight wool dryer balls that are between the size of a tennis ball and soft ball seem to be just right. The tutorial below shows you how to make two dryer balls from one skein of yarn.
The best yarn is 100% wool. After wrapping your yarn into balls, you wash them in pantyhose so the yarn “felts” together and becomes a solid ball that won’t unravel. Thick, wool roving yarn felts perfectly.
The best colors for homemade wool dryer balls are ones that are bright and will be easy to pick out of your laundry. Avoid red or other colors that might bleed. (I learned that the hard way.)
Have I convinced you to make your own wool dryer balls yet?! Let’s get started!
Homemade Wool Dryer Balls
- Start your first wool dryer ball by wrapping the yarn around a couple of fingers 10 times.
- Remove the yarn from your fingers and wrap about 10 times around the middle.
- Continue wrapping around the ball from every angle. Make your way around the ball, wrapping 5-10 times before moving to a new angle. (There's no exact science to this. Just keep trying to form a round ball.) Wrap the yarn tightly and hang onto your ball so it doesn't pop out of your hands.
- When your ball is a little bigger than a tennis ball, cut the yarn and pull the end through the ball with your crochet hook.
- Repeat Steps 1-4 to make a second wool dryer ball with the remainder of your yarn.
- Place your wool balls in your pantyhose, knotting the pantyhose between the balls.
- Run your wool dryer balls through your washer and dryer with separate loads of laundry until they "felt" and become solid balls. (Mine "felt" in 3-4 loads.)
- Remove balls from pantyhose and use in the dryer in place of dryer sheets.