Air Your Happy Laundry

air your happy laundry

Everyone has a grumpy and un-positive load of laundry from time to time. But a suds and spin in our optimistic washer and dryer will DEFINITELY help!

We read Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer (Albert Whitman & Company, 2016). Penguin is in a flat out grumpy mood, and stomping his feet and shucking his rain gear doesn’t help. But a nice bath, cozy pajamas, hot cocoa, favorite book, and grumpy pants on a positive spin cycle? Ahhhhh…THAT did the trick.

The cool thing about our little story time washer is that it really spins your laundry…

You’ll need:

  • 2 small boxes with lids.
  • 1 corrugated cardboard base
  • 1 paper cup
  • 1 brass fastener
  • A box cutter
  • A selection of patterned paper
  • 1 piece of yarn (ours was 29″ long)
  • Scissors, glue and tape for construction
  • Markers for decorating
  • Hot glue

The washer and dryer are two small boxes with lids.The washer opens from the front, the dryer opens from the top. Both are hot glued to a corrugated cardboard base.

washer and dryer We added a white poster board instrument button panel to the top of the washer, foam bead buttons and dials, and decorated our base with color masking tape, but that’s all optional, of course.

Also optional are a little paper cup laundry basket, a toilet paper tube soap container, and a tiny box of fabric softener sheets (which were banana scratch and sniff stickers)!

basket soap fabric sheetsThe turning mechanism for your washer is a paper cup inside the box (we cut ours down to 2.25″). The cup pivots on a brass fastener. It’s important to get a tight connection, so we hot glued a circle of silver mirror board over the head of the brass fastener to strengthen it (white poster board works too):

inside washer

On the back of the washer, we doubled tabbed a piece of poster board to make it easier for the kids to grasp and turn (and again, we reinforced the connection with hot glue):

back of washer

Your washer and dryer are ready. Now for the laundry! Our laundry was 2 matched sets of patterned paper….a wrinkly “dirty” set, and a “clean” flat set.

dirty and clean clothes on line

Did you notice that the clean clothes are taped to a yarn clothesline? We taped the other end of the line inside the dryer…

inside dryerSo you can drop your wrinkly dirty clothes into the dryer and magically pull the flat clean clothes out!


The final part of the project? In keeping with the beautiful self-care message of the book, we asked kids to write grumpy things on the backs of the dirty clothes, and then the solutions on the backs of the clean ones!

laundry solution b