DIY Wool Dryer Balls

Finished Wool Dryer Balls

Simple.  Natural.  Effective

As soon as I came across these balls I knew I had to have them!!!  Like so many awesome things, I found them on pinterest.  Like etsy, I LOVE pinterest.  Others loath it.   No biggy.

I drip a few drops of my fav essential oils onto each ball and I use 4 balls all at once  I’ve NEVER bought dryer sheets.   When I left home mid 20’s it never crossed my mind to ever buy them.  Now in my early 30’s I’m glad I didn’t waste my money or health on dryer sheets.  They contain awful, synthetic chemicals and call them “mountain fresh”.  I love the mountains and I can tell you first hand they do not smell the way dryer sheets claim.  Using wool dryer balls, with or without essential oils, is a safe, effective and economical way to dry clothes.

PILLING ALERT ** I would NOT recommend using them with any materials such as Nikes DryFIit, Adidas ClimaCool, Lululemon Luon etc.  The wool balls will cause pilling!

Benefits of using wool dryer balls.

– wool is a natural material containing no harsh synthetic chemicals

– shortens the drying time of your laundry by helping to separate the clothes.

– uses less electricity and saves you money

What you’ll need 

– R-E-A-L wool (not a wool blended with any other material like cotton or acrylic)

***it must be real 100% wool for the balls to felt properly

***be sure the wool is not super wash wool

What you’ll do

– start by wrapping the wool around 3 fingers about 8-10 times.

IMG_0440

– remove the wool and wrap the centre about 6-8 times.

IMG_0441

 

– carefully begin wrapping the wool around its self to begin creating a small ball.  I prefer to wrap the wool one direction about 5 times and then slightly change the direction and repeat.  It’s important to wrap the ball with some tension.  Too loose of wool could result in slight unraveling of the outer layer of your final dryer ball.

IMG_0442IMG_0443

– secure the end of your wool by threading it through a tapestry needle and pushing it into the centre of your ball.

– i prefer to make the ball 10.5 inches in diameter BEFORE I felt it.

Remember the wool will shrink (aka felt) so that 10.5 inches will be much smaller once washed & dryer HOT!

Felting happens when the wool is washed in HOT soapy water and dried in HOT.  This shrinks the wool, causing the wool fibers to cling together.

IMG_2232

– place the ball in a stocking/pantyhose & tie a knot, add the next ball, tie another knot and repeat.  You  should be able to fit 4-5 balls per stocking leg.

– throw the wool ball/pantyhose combo into your regular wash .  Agitation is important so try washing the balls with jeans and try to avoid washing them with items like towels.  Once the wash is done toss them into the dryer, while still in the pantyhose and with your clothes.

– after the dryer is done, simply untie each knot in the pantyhose and admire your new wool dryer ball!

*** If the ball looks like its unraveled a bit not to worry.  I simply wrap the ball a few more times with new wool and repeat the HOT water wash & dry like before.  I get some unraveling about 20% of the time.  It just means I didn’t wrap the outer layer of wool tight enough.

Don’t feel like making your own??  These will be for sale on my etsy site shortly  I’ll share the link once its up!

Best,

Julie

Almost Paleo Coconut Cookies

I’ve a HUGE bag of coconut flour.  Today it was time for me to put it to use!  I’ve titled this “Almost” paleo coconut cookies because needless to say there is some wheat four in the recipe.  The original recipe is from the blog Beautiful Disasters. I changed the original amount of flour from 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour to 3/4 cup flour and 1/2 cup almond flour.  The cookies came out AMAZING!  I would be willing to try it with all almond flour next time.

coconut cookies

Here’s what you’ll need

– 1/2 cup butter (I prefer butter from cows fed an all grass diet)

– 1/4 cup brown sugar

– 1/4 cup white sugar

-1 egg

-1 teaspoon vanilla

– 3/4 cup all purpose flour

– 1/2 cup almond flour  (*almond flour is simply raw almonds that I ground in a food processor.  Almond flour can also bought)

– 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

– pinch of salt (optional)

– 1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut

Here’s what you’ll do 

*preheat open to 350 degrees F

1. cream the butter and sugars together

2. add the egg and vanilla, beat well

3. add the all purpose flour, coconut flour, baking soda and salt, mix again

4. place parchment paper on a cookie sheet (keeps cookies from sticking & keeps cookie sheet clean!).  Spoon teaspoon sized batter onto the parchment paper, leaving about 2 inches between cookies.  The cookies cook evenly without having to press them down or making perfect cookie clumps.

5. bake for 8-10 minutes or until the edges have just started to turn golden.  Allow the cookies to cool for a minute or two before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Hubby came home and has eaten a good load of them already!  I think they’re a hit:)

If you make these and have success with any recipe changes please come back and share your success!

*store cookies in an airtight container or sealable plastic bag.

coconut cookies in box

etsy love

It’s no secret I LOVE etsy and you might too!

Unknown-1

Its an awesome on line community of artists and crafters from all over the world who sell their handmade or vintage goods.  The selection of items have shown nearly no limits.  Although I haven’t searched for a home on etsy I could buy nearly everything I need for my home on there.  Need a handmade coffee table made out of reclaimed wood? How about some new pillows for your sofa? Bikini for your next surf or a floppy hat for your next trip to wine country?

I made my first purchase on etsy about 2.5 years ago.  I bought my bridesmaids gifts, wedding invites and a BIG banner for my wedding from there.  The banner has hand painted words onto canvas and came from a Kara Melwood in Alberta, Calgary.  The bracelets I gifted to my bridesmaids came from a selling LeAnn Larson in Minnesota,
United States.   I have since bought just over 25 items from sellers on etsy.

My love for etsy satisfies my deep belief that supporting business at the grass roots level is highly important to community, fellowship and personal health.  And besides, it’s an AWESOME way to get my hands on goods from anywhere in the world.  There’s something special about quality handmade goods.  I absolutely love knowing that I’ve purchased something directly from the person who’s made it themselves.  I’d like to someday open up my own etsy shop and get my “etsy-on”.  I wish to have my own little work shop one day where I can paint, stain and create like the best of them.  I’ve limited experience in doing so but I know that I can.

images

one of my first loves

Esty, an unexpected find for me that quickly grew into a serious, year round love years ago! This banner I used at my wedding, was one of my first purchase on Etsy from the talented Kara Melwood based out of Alberta, Canada.  Etsy is a artisans wonderland full of hand crafted goods and antique delights from around the world.  The options are nearly endless for what you can find.  Like many wonderful finds on the web, Etsy can whisk you away in imagination, amazement and creativity that many guys and gals can easily fall in love with:)  I love for Etsy for it’s ability to house the grass roots mentality within the tech advanced world.  Etsy magnifies and gives a new definition to the words “craft fair”.  The goods for purchase are the tangible hearts and souls of the crafters behind them.  The site includes the option of creating a favourites (Canadian spelling folks) list of specific items or favourite shops.  If you’re a creative bug your self and you’re looking for a great way to share what you do Etsy could be for you.  If the parameters of parent hood occupy your “free time” so purchasing others creative talent is more your style swing by Etsy and enjoy creating your fav’s list.  Now I just need a grand room with high ceilings to hang my beautiful wedding banner!Image