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Home Ec: To Dry or Not to Dry Clothes


Generally speaking, machine drying isn’t very good for the life of clothing.  The heat and tumbling breakdown garment construction, speed fabric deterioration, and cause shrinkage.  It’s a pretty intense process to subject your clothes to every week or so.  It also can get expensive when you add up the cost of electricity, the cost of drying products, and the shortened lifespan of garments.  That being said, sometimes it’s unavoidable.  Those clothes need to get dry and fast!   Even if you’ve made the switch to air-drying there are still items that need to be fluffed to soften the crinkles once dry.  Is it even possible to quit the dryer cold turkey? For most people, I don’t think so. The age-old question may be made easier with this laundry hack: wool dryer balls!  Being skeptical of adding any additional items or processes to my routine I questioned even adding these little buddies to the laundry party guest list.  Since the initial misgivings, I have had time to repent and in return have received a new, steadfast friend.  One that softens my clothes and saves me money, woo hoo.

For whatever degree of dryer usage you partake in, wool dryer balls can be quite beneficial.  These handy balls are made of felted wool and are intended to fluff the laundry while in the dryer.  The fluffing action cuts down on drying time by better circulating air throughout the clothes and also helps with wrinkles for the same reason.  These woolen balls are all natural and eliminate the need for chemical laden dryer sheets and softeners.  Plus, they are reusable for years, saving you money and waste from the landfill.   For Appalatch garments (that are dryer safe), we highly recommend using dryer balls if you must dry in a dryer.  The tumbling will be lessened and the drying time shortened thus wear and tear is decreased.  We really like Echoview Fiber Mill’s hand made dryer balls because they are made from wool scraps that are braided and felted together.  This process is awesome because it turns “waste” into something useful and ensures a well-made product that will last.  Also, we’re lucky enough to be sheltered in the Echoview Mill and can contribute our own wool scraps from knitting to their inventory for the making of future dryer balls; waste not, want not!


September 11, 2014 by Mariano deGuzman
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