Friday, July 8, 2011

Hobo Mama Giveaway: Wool Dryer Balls from The Green Belle Shoppe $17 {8.8; US/Can} CLOSED

This is a joint giveaway with Hobo Mama and Natural Parents Network. You may enter at one site only. Please find the section marked "Win it!" for the mandatory main entry and optional bonus entries. This giveaway is part of the Freedom of Cloth blog carnival at Natural Parents Network — a week of celebrating cloth diapers!

Green Belle Designs wool dryer balls giveaway held in hand

The Green Belle Shoppe by Shelly Rose Designs is offering our readers a giveaway of 2 Wool Dryer Balls in the winner's choice of scent and colors! These 100% wool-core dryer balls soften clothes, attack static, and cut drying time — all without harsh chemicals!

Why wool dryer balls?

I was eager to buck the dryer-sheet habit but to find a green solution that worked just as well at softening fabrics. Back when we didn't have a standard washer/dryer, I used hang drying for most of my clothes. What I didn't love was how stiff my towels and jeans always were, despite a vinegar rinse, and how all the cat hair and lint stayed put.

When we moved to our current place and I had my own dryer, I was excited — but the more I read about the downsides of dryer sheets and fabric softener, the more convinced I became that I needed a safe and eco-friendly alternative.

The final shove? Realizing a newborn was on the way. I had to wash homebirth towels and linens, a fluff stash of cloth diapers, and umpteen teensy baby clothes. How could I do the equivalent of rubbing caustic, cancer-causing chemicals all over my vulnerable, just-born baby?

(Um, sorry to the rest of my family that it took till then to make the switch…)

I looked into various options for natural fabric softening, but the one that caught my eye was wool dryer balls. You know I'm all smoochy-smoochy with wool anyway. So I figured it had to be good for this use, too, right?

Well, I honestly wasn't sure. Could throwing a couple wool balls in with a load of laundry really soften up jeans and towels? If not, there was no advantage to just doing without the dryer sheets and enduring a fabric-softener-less life.

I knew I needed to test some firsthand. Shelly of The Green Belle Shoppe by Shelly Rose Designs came to the rescue!

The Green Belle Shoppe wool dryer balls: First impressions


Green Belle Designs wool dryer balls giveaway wrapped in tissue

Green Belle Designs wool dryer balls giveaway in plastic bag


First of all, they came all pretty-like. By the by, Shelly ships them in eco-friendly mailers, and she ships fast.

The balls were lovely, and quite large — each a bit larger than a tennis ball. The wool is soft and well felted. I know whereof I speak, because I made a couple wool dryer balls of my own following Anktangle's tutorial and mine did not end up nearly so smooth and uniform. These balls have stayed perfectly smooth since I first received them a couple months ago, although I've heard if they do rough up, you can just trim off any surface nubs.

Some of Shelly's wool balls are a single color, but I loved how she wove different yarn threads through the surface of these ones. The design is striking. Just in case you were worried, any dyed yarn she uses is color-fast and won't come off on your clothes.

And the smell? Ah! I chose to have mine scented, so that I could review all possible aspects on offer. That said, you can choose not to have yours scented as well. Shelly has a list of scents made from natural essential oils. I chose Butt Naked so that I could tell you I chose Butt Naked. It was between that and Monkey Farts. Also, the description drew me in:

"Butt Naked--Classic blend of granny smith apples, honeydew melon, strawberries and pears, with hints of spice."

You can request how heavily or lightly scented you want your dryer balls. I was expecting the scent not to be very noticeable, since it's natural (I guess I have low expectations?), but I could smell it on our clothes after drying with the balls, and it was quite lovely. After a number of weeks, the scent has dissipated, but it can be refreshed by once more applying essential oils (your own or the same ones Shelly uses).

Yes, yes, but do they work?


Green Belle Designs wool dryer balls giveaway sitting in dryer


I have good news. They do!

I was surprised and pleased. The fabric softening is a factor of having the heft of the balls beat against your clothes. That's why there are PVC options out there and thrifty suggestions to just use tennis balls. I appreciate that the wool inner and outer of these makes them rather gentle floggers of my clothing. Unlike the PVC counterparts, these won't snag or mutilate delicates, and yet they are truly effective. My jeans and towels came out feeling just as if I'd used dryer sheets. I know! I was so excited.

As for static? I have somewhat mixed results there. I'm wondering if having more of the balls would help or not. What I have noticed is that it's only the synthetics in the dryer that get staticky, and suggestions to cut down on it include not mixing synthetics and natural fibers in the dryer, not drying all the way (letting them air dry the last little bit), and — my preferred plan right now — just not care too much about it. I haven't found the static affecting anything once I've taken everything out of the dryer and started wearing or using it; it's just a little crackle while I'm folding.

The dryer balls also claim to cut down on drying time. I was hoping I'd be able to quantify this, but I'm kind of hopeless about paying attention to how long it was taking before versus now. I think it is in fact taking less time, and I trust that if I had more of the balls in there (I currently have four — two from The Green Belle Shoppe and two I made), it would cut down even further. It just makes sense to me, given the absorbent properties of wool and the fact that the balls fluff and separate the clothes as they spin.

I wondered about extra noise from having balls bumping around in the dryer, but it doesn't bother me. I can hear that it's a bit louder, but not much louder than a dryer usually is. I think it might be that they're all wool that helps with that — I'd imagine harder balls might be louder. (Like, say, the racket the clasps on my son's overalls make!)

One thing I really appreciate about wool dryer balls is that they're cloth diaper friendly. I knew I would be washing cloth diapers of my own, and I knew using fabric softener or dryer sheets is a no-no. I love that having the wool dryer balls cuts down on the drying time while still softening up the prefolds. (Just make sure you use your laundry tabs for any Aplix/Velcro closures so they don't attach themselves to a ball!)

Final thoughts

clean homebirth towels and linens for home birth laundryI am so pleased with my wool dryer balls from The Green Belle Shoppe. They're pretty, they smell nice, and they work hard. (That makes me want to make some weird joke comparing them against me, but I'll resist.)

I'm happy knowing I'm not coating my family in chemicals. My family is happy with our fresh, soft laundry.

See that stack of homebirth towels and receiving blankets there? They were nice and clean and lightly scented with Butt Naked — safe and green and awaiting the birth of my little one.


BUY IT!

You can buy extra-large wool dryer balls at The Green Belle Shoppe by Shelly Rose Designs on Etsy for $17 for a set of two.

Shelly's store carries other lovely items such as amigurumi crocheted toys, wool diaper cover soakers, and snuggly baby blankets.


WIN IT!

The Green Belle Shoppe by Shelly Rose Designs logo for wool dryer ball giveawayFor your own chance to win two 100% wool dryer balls in the winner's choice of scent and color, enter in the comments below! Contest is open to the United States and Canada.

MAIN ENTRY: Visit The Green Belle Shoppe and tell me what other item interests you!

Leave an email address in at least one of your comments if it's not clearly visible on your profile or linked web page so I can contact you if you win. (You can write it like this to foil spambots: mail {at} hobomama {dot} com or similar.)

This is a joint giveaway with Hobo Mama and Natural Parents Network, a site co-founded by Lauren of Hobo Mama & Dionna of Code Name: Mama that brings together those interested in attachment parenting and a natural lifestyle. You may enter at one site only, and we'll be recording IP addresses to ensure that there are no duplicate entries. That said, please do check out and enjoy both sites!


BONUS ENTRIES, to increase your chance of winning after completing the main entry above. (Leave a separate comment for each so we can count them all!)
  • Pick out which scent you would choose if you win (or no scent).
  • Follow the Shelly Rose Designs blog through Google Friend Connect, or subscribe to the RSS feed in a reader or by email (1 entry for each).
  • Follow www.HoboMama.com through Google Friend Connect, or subscribe to the Hobo Mama RSS feed in a reader or by email (1 entry for each).
  • Follow www.HoboMamaReviews.com publicly through Google Friend Connect, or subscribe to the Hobo Mama Reviews RSS feed in a reader or by email (1 entry for each).
  • Subscribe to Natural Parents Network in a reader or by email (1 entry for each).
  • Leave a relevant comment on a non-giveaway article at Hobo Mama and tell us which post (comment on separate posts for up to 3 entries total).
  • Leave a relevant comment on a non-giveaway article at Natural Parents Network and tell us which post (comment on separate posts for up to 3 entries total).
  • Like Shelly Rose Designs on Facebook.
  • Like Hobo Mama on Facebook.
  • Like Natural Parents Network on Facebook.
  • Follow @ChellyRose on Twitter and leave your Twitter name in the comment.
  • Follow @Hobo_Mama on Twitter and leave your Twitter name in the comment.
  • Follow @NatParNet on Twitter and leave your Twitter name in the comment.
  • Tweet about this giveaway (up to 5 times total, at least 24 hours apart). You can tweet this text: #Win 2 Wool Dryer Balls from @ChellyRose & @Hobo_Mama! Go #green with your laundry! #giveaway http://bit.ly/oD3Yhw {8.8; US/Can}
  • Post this giveaway on your Facebook page or wall and leave the link (1 entry). You can use this status update: Green your laundry! Enter to win 2 Wool Dryer Balls from @Shelly Rose Designs and @Hobo Mama. Contest ends August 8 and is open to U.S. and Canada.
    Be sure to attach the contest URL to your update. (This is not part of the status text!)
    http://www.hobomama.com/2011/07/giveaway-wool-dryer-balls-from-green.html
  • Enter another of the current giveaways on Hobo Mama or the giveaways on Natural Parents Network (1 extra entry per giveaway — check back for more!).
  • Put the Hobo Mama button on your website or add http://www.HoboMama.com to your text blogroll for 2 extra entries each. The HTML code for the button is in the sidebar to the right. Leave your site URL in the comment.
  • Put The Freedom of Cloth Carnival badge on your website. The HTML code is on the bottom of this page. Leave your site URL in the comment.
  • Put the Natural Parents Network badge on your website or add http://NaturalParentsNetwork.com to your text blogroll for 2 extra entries each. The HTML code for the badge is in the sidebar to the right. Leave your site URL in the comment.

RULES:
  • Contest open to U.S. and Canadian mailing addresses.
  • Contestants may enter at either Hobo Mama or Natural Parents Network but not both. Entries will be combined for the drawing of a single winner.
  • Leave each entry as a separate comment so I can count them all.
  • For actions like following and subscribing, if you already follow or subscribe, just let me know in your comment.
  • For tasks that garner you multiple entries, you can copy and paste the comment with a #1, #2, etc.
  • You don't have to do any of the bonus entries, but you do have to complete the first mandatory one.
  • I will pick the winner through Random.org after the contest closes and send an email notification. Leave an email address in your comment if it's not clearly visible on your profile or linked web page so I can contact you if you win. If I can't reach a winner or don't hear back within a couple days, I'll draw a new name.
  • Any questions, let Lauren know: mail {at} HoboMama.com

Contest closes August 8 at 11:59 p.m. PT.


Disclosure: Shelly Rose sent me two wool dryer balls for review.
I try to seek out only products I think you would find
relevant and useful to your life as a natural parent.
If I don't like a product, I won't be recommending it to you.
That's how I roll. See my full disclosure policy here.

308 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 308 of 308   Newer›   Newest»
Anonymous said...

I love the wool soakers!

vanveenkim@hotmail.com

Kristina said...

I would love to try the Cotton Face Cloths.

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

The scent I would love to try would be Orange Creamsicle.


pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

GFC Shelly Rose (Kristina)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

GFC Hobo Momma (Kristina)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Subscribed to Hobo Momma emails.


pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Subscribe to Natural Parent Emails.

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Liked Shelly Rose on FB (Kristina Best)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Liked Hobo Momma on FB (Kristina Best)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Liked Natural Parent Network on Fb (Kristina Best)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Follow Chelly Rose on twitter (turtlekris79)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Follow Hobo Momma on twitter (turtlekris79)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Kristina said...

Follow Natural Parent on twitter (turtlekris79)

pkgbest at gmail dot com

Crystal said...

I also love her wool diaper soakers and the cuddly baby blanket!

crystal{dot}martin{at}rocketmail{dot}com

Crystal said...

Also the scent I would pick is cherry almond!

crystal{dot}martin{at}rocketmail{dot}com

Nikki said...

I'm also interested in their Wool Soaker and Felted Wool Scarflette with Button. ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

I would choose Gardenia or McIntosh Apple. ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Follow www.HoboMama.com through Google Friend Connect ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

subscribe to the Hobo Mama by email ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Subscribe to Natural Parents Network by email ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Like Hobo Mama on Facebook. ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Like Natural Parents Network on Facebook ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Follow @ChellyRose on Twitter MissOsMom ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Follow @Hobo_Mama on Twitter MissOsMom ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

Follow @NatParNet on Twitter MissOsMom ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/MissOsMom/status/98806180310290432 ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

entered in the Two Hip Peas in a Pod Pocket Diaper giveaway ngiraldi at gmail dot com

Nikki said...

entered in the Linah Sora OS Pocket Diaper giveaway ngiraldi at gmail dot com

mamajhaha said...

I like that they have add on scents

mamajhaha said...

If I won, I'd start off with no scent and figure it out from there

mamajhaha said...

tweet
https://twitter.com/#!/mamajhaha/status/98815971795546113

Karla said...

also love the snuggly baby blankets! Would look great in our new nursery :)

Felicia R said...

Their blankets look really neat and comfy!
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

I would choose Lavender Flower!
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Follow the Shelly Rose Designs blog through Google Friend Connect
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Following www.HoboMama.com through Google Friend Connect
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Subscribed to the Hobo Mama email
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Subscribed to Natural Parents Network with google reader
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Like Shelly Rose Designs on Facebook.
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Like Hobo Mama on Facebook.
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Like Natural Parents Network on Facebook.
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Follow @ChellyRose on Twitter (@Loves_Fluff)
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Follow @Hobo_Mama on Twitter
(@Loves_Fluff)
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

Follow @NatParNet on Twitter
(@Loves_Fluff)
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Felicia R said...

tweet
https://twitter.com/#!/Loves_Fluff/status/98924846414704640
fmgrice2(at)yahoo(dot)com

Anonymous said...

Oooh, I'm loving her wool soakers for sure! bogflower -at- gmail -dot- com

Anonymous said...

i'd love the cherry almond scent! bogflower -at- gmail -dot- com

mamajhaha said...

tweet
https://twitter.com/#!/mamajhaha/status/99102540335038464
mamajhaha gmail com

dailymom said...

I also like the wool diaper covers
heididaily at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I would also like to try the small/medium wool soaker from The Green Belle Shoppe.

to_jill at hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

I would probably choose the unscented dryer balls.
to_jill at hotmail.com

RaisingGreenRichmondKids said...

I would choose a snuggly blanket. Dorinda@RaisingGreenRichmondKids.com

RaisingGreenRichmondKids said...

I would choose vanilla bean
Dorinda@RaisingGreenRichmondKids.com

RaisingGreenRichmondKids said...

I now follow in gfc
Dorinda@RaisingGreenRichmondKids.com

kayla bondy said...

i like the osfm wool soakers!

burd_k at hotmail dot com

kayla bondy said...

i would choose the scent "rain storm"

burd_k at hotmail dot com

kayla bondy said...

gfc follower of the shelly rose designs blog

kayla bondy said...

gfc follower of thew hobo mama blog

burd_k at hotmail dot com

kayla bondy said...

gfc follower of hobo mama reviews blog

burd_k at hotmail dot com

kayla bondy said...

"like" shelly rose designs via facebook

burd_k at hotmail dot com

kayla bondy said...

"like" hobo mama via facebook


burd_k at hotmail dot com

kayla bondy said...

"liked" natural parents network via face book


burd_k at hotmail dot com

mamajhaha said...

tweet
https://twitter.com/#!/mamajhaha/status/99493351161729024
mamajhaha gmail com

Laura said...

Entry #8 - tweeted about this just now: http://twitter.com/#!/kyrielle/status/99659103672082434

Julie Free said...

I would LOVE to own unscented wool dryer balls!! I don't currently own any so this is perfect!

juliefree3@gmail.com

Julie Free said...

I follow hobo mama on google reader!

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

I like the Snuggly Crochet Baby Blanket!

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

So many scent choices! I think I would pick Citrus.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Following the Shelly Rose Designs blog on GFC.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Following Hobo Mama on GFC.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Following Hobo Mama Reviews on GFC.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Following @ChellyRose on Twitter as @mommygiveaways.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Following @Hobo_Mama on Twitter as @mommygiveaways.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Following @NatParNet on Twitter as @mommygiveaways.

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

Tweet: http://twitter.com/#!/mommygiveaways/status/100407928594497537

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

The Natural Parents Network button is on my blog sidebar. #1
http://canadianmommygiveaways.blogspot.com/

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Tirza @ Canadian Mommy Giveaways said...

The Natural Parents Network button is on my blog sidebar. #2
http://canadianmommygiveaways.blogspot.com/

canadianmommygiveaways at gmail dot com

Olivia L said...

I'd love to try one of her wool soakers
olivia.lasting at gmail dot com

Olivia L said...

Follow the Shelly Rose Designs blog through GFC as Olivia L

Olivia L said...

follow Hobo Mama via GFC as Olivia L

Olivia L said...

subscribed to Hobo Mama via Google Reader

Olivia L said...

subscribed to Hobo Mama via email

Olivia L said...

following hobo mama reviews via GFC as Olivia L

Olivia L said...

subscribed to hobo mama reviews via Google Reader

Olivia L said...

I'd pick either butt naked or strawberry citrus fragrance

Olivia L said...

subscribed to NPN via Google Reader

Olivia L said...

Like Shelley Rose Designs on FB as Olivia Lambert Lasting

Olivia L said...

like HObo Mama on FB as Olivia Lambert Lasting

Olivia L said...

Like Natural parents Network on FB as Olivia Lambert Lasting

Olivia L said...

follow ChellyRose on twitter as @OliviaLasting

Olivia L said...

follow Hobo_Mama on twitter as @OliviaLasting

Olivia L said...

follow NatParNet on twitter as @OliviaLasting

Olivia L said...

I entered the Kickin Creations laundry detergent giveaway

Olivia L said...

tweeted the giveaway
https://twitter.com/#!/OliviaLasting/status/100456411565260800

Molly A. said...

I would love one of her wool soakers! The colors are so pretty!

pallasathena2007 [at] gmail [dot] com

The Green House said...

I like the Snuggly Crochet Baby Blanket in Aqua and White. Very pretty!

The Green House said...

I like the Lavender Flower scent. Mahalo!

The Green House said...

I follow the Shelly Rose Designs blog through GFC via The Green House.

The Green House said...

I follow Hobo Mama through GFC via The Green House.

The Green House said...

I like Shelly Rose Designs on FB via The Green House.

The Green House said...

I like Hobo Mama on FB via The Green House. Mahalo!

The Green House said...

I like Natural Parents Network on FB via The Green House.

The Green House said...

I follow ChellyRose on Twitter via @GreenHouse_blog.

The Green House said...

I follow Hobo Mama on Twitter via @GreenHouse_blog.

The Green House said...

I follow Natural Parents Network on Twitter via @GreenHouse_blog.

The Green House said...

I twitted the giveaway: https://twitter.com/#!/GreenHouse_blog/status/100749656702722049

The Green House said...

I entered the EcaPants giveaway!

Miranda Ward said...

the wool soakers



freebiegoddess03@aol.com

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