Friday, March 1, 2013

Bouncing Wool Dryer Balls DIY

I have been wanting to make my own wool dryer balls forever. If you have been in the market for these fantastic little balls of savings you know that they can get a bit pricey. depending on the size of the load you need between 3 and 6 balls. When researching I discovered that depending on where you purchase these they can be between $6-$12.00 for each ball. Yikes!!! If your not a math fan that adds up to $36-$72 dollars. No thank you ma'am. that is not in my budget. So I then went researching for a DIY on these bad boys, and came across a few. I was giddy with excitement by now. Next off to joann's I went to find a couple reams of %100 wool (make sure it is not a wool blend). 

I found two gorgeous reams of orange and brown. 
 To top it off they were 40% off. So I got both for $9.00

Reasons why this are so great...
reduces static
reduces dry time by at least 25%
acts as a fabric softener
100% safe for cloth diapers

also you can choose to go fragrance free or add a few drops
 of your favorite essential oil (let dry before using, about 10 minutes).

Ok... So let's get started on this how-to.

Stage One
Take the end of your yarn and wrap it around two of you fingers 3-4 times.

Slip off of your fingers and wrap 3-4 times around the middle .

Continue to wrap down the bunch, then turn, keep wrapping and turning as you go. 
Make sure to wrap tightly and neatly. When I started getting into a groove
 I was wrapping 4 times then tuning and wrap 4 times again.

When you are done with this stage it should be about the size of a laptop mouse (see below)

 Now weave the end of your yarn bit into the ball with your crochet hook or fingers. 

Stage Two
Preparing your balls for felting

Place inside a leg of one of your panty hose. 

Then tie a knot.

After you finish each ball place in panty hose and keep going. 
I did 6 total and here is what mine looked like before going in the wash.

Now toss them in the washing machine. Do NOT use any detergent during this process. Make sure your setting is on HOT (hot/cold cycle, high agitaion)

Now toss them in the dryer (still in the sock). Set your dryer to HIGH heat, automatic cycle.

Once dry take them out and cut the sock and remove each ball.
You will notice that the balls are a little bit smaller and that the yarn is fuzzier and may even be congealed in some places. This is GOOD.

Stage Three
Final Layer of yarn and final felting

To start , grab your ball, secure the yarn with your thumb and start wrapping. Keep wrapping until your ball is the size of a tennis ball. 

It is time to start the felting process all over again. 
Place each of your ball in another stocking they same way as before. 

This time they need to go through the wash and dryer process twice. 
You can throw them in with regular washes this time through. 

Once they have gone through twice. Cut them out of the stocking and they are ready to now be used. 

Have a Happy Laundry Day!!!

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