When you need to use the dryer, make modelling clay out of your dryer lint.
Dryer lint exists in endless supplies in some households and can be put to good use. Of course hanging your laundry outside is the most green option, but when you can’t we have some solutions for the lint. For years, my mother in-law has complained about the wastefulness of dryer lint, only half in jest. “There must be something a body can do with the stuff! It’s endless!!”
My husband would giggle and agree while I would stifle a serious need to roll my eyes. The two of us would watch for magazine articles that suggested uses for dryer lint. We’d snip out and mail the articles to Mom in-law, back in Chicago. It was an inside joke that somehow bonded the three of us over the miles.
Where I live in Israel, no one in their right mind uses the dryer during the summer months. We have the ultimate clothes dryer: the sun. Drive through any Israeli neighborhood and you are sure to see underwear hanging in many-layered tiers from apartment buildings. The scenic route, my mother calls this, with wry disdain.
I hang laundry outside whenever the weather is nice, crunchy towels, be damned. The kids like to help. They hand me clothespins or hang their little socks and get a nice lesson on harnessing solar power at the same time.
But the rainy season makes drying laundry a daunting proposition during the winter months. I have a portable rack set up in my living room and hang some things there, but must resort to the occasional use of my machine dryer. It’s that, or run out of underwear.
So when I came across this recipe for dryer lint modeling clay, I was thrilled. Not only did I have something funny to share with my mother in-law and husband, but I had a neat way to recycle something no one really thinks of as a commodity (barring my mother in-law).
On balance, it’s good for my kids to see me come up with a creative use for something we would have thrown away.
Dryer Lint Modeling Clay
In large saucepan mix 3 cups dryer lint, 2 cups water, 1 cup of flour, and 1/8 teaspoon of vegetable oil.
Stir over medium heat until smooth.
Cool before using.
The modeling clay can be used with soap or candy molds or for free-form modeling fun.
Allow a week of drying time. Items can be painted when dry.
Read more about making greener children:
A Mother’s Voice Can Make Greener Children
Make Greener Children With A Patch of Dirt
Egyptian Kids Find Pollution With Disposable Cameras
Varda Epstein is a content writer and editor for CogniBeat where she writes about the issues that affect not only those with learning difficulties, but their families, too.
Image via superkuh