If I put a fitted sheet in the tumble dryer with other things, it will try to kidnap smaller items and twist them into one or more of its corners so that they can't come out and don't get dry. Anybody know of a way to prevent this?

What have I tried, you ask? The only solutions I can think of are

  • dry the sheet separately (seems wasteful of time, energy and the credit on the smart-card we feed into the dryer)
  • put the sheet in a mesh bag (but I've never seen big-enough mesh bags on sale, and a too-small one would just prevent it from drying)
  • put everything else in a mesh bag (again, not a great solution: would have to buy a lot of such bags and spend a lot of time putting things in and out).
  • live with the fact that some things are going to come out wet, and hang them up afterwards.

So far I've been going with the last option.

  • 1
    Could you add what you tried? That will help others answer the question.
    – Pobrecita
    Commented Dec 24, 2014 at 23:33

11 Answers 11


Just get some chip clips and fold the fitted sheet in half, holding it with the clips.washes and dries just fine.

  • Could you please add a photo of a chip clip, or a link to show what one is? I think these are referred to as bulldog clips in my part of the world; a pic would quickly make things clear.
    – Adam
    Commented Apr 5, 2016 at 22:34
  • 1
    Sorry for the huge image, but basically it's a clip you use to hold bags of potato chips, or crisps or whatever, closed. Fold the fitted sheet in half, and put about 3 of them along where the edges meet. Nothing can roll up inside and make a cannonball of wet clothes.
    – Jabrwoky
    Commented Apr 5, 2016 at 23:19
  • 1
    You don't have an issue with plastic chip clips melting in a hot dryer? Commented May 1, 2016 at 23:57
  • Not so far. Sometimes they get knocked to bits, but usually they're fine. You can use wooden clothes pins as well.
    – Jabrwoky
    Commented May 11, 2016 at 11:45

You might try putting your sheets in a mesh laundry bag, like this one.

This will allow the bag to get dry from the dryer, but will keep it separate from other items in the dryer.

It's a little bit of a separate issue, but I know that people use mesh bags like this to wash and dry tzitzis, whose strings can get tangled in other stuff in the dryer.


Things that will work:

  • Dry all of your matching linens or sets together. This way you can take your sheets and put them in the pillowcase and dry them that way. This stops the sets from getting lost and tangled. There are laundry bags for delicates and such, but those may be expensive.

  • Dry your fitted sheets by them selves this should work. But they still run the minor risk of getting tangled around each other. This is unlikely, but still may happen.

Other things

  • Separate the wash. Putting heavier items in with the sheets and stop incorporating smaller items with the sheet load should end this problem.

  • Tennis Balls and the store equivalent are suppose to stop tangling and the harder object should stop the stuff from sticking together.


This may sound complicated. What I do when washing sheets is stretch each one vertically, drop into the basket so each stacks upon itself, then put all sheets in the washer without wadding them up. If I put them in that way they tend to stay that way. I wash two sets of king size sheets together at a time, which is four sheets total, in a front load washer. When drying I separate them out and avoid wadding up. I save the sheets so I can wash them together in this fashion, not washing anything else with them. This seems very effective.


My Panasonic condenser dryer tangles my bedding up and drives me mad. Having read lots of things on the internet about how to stop this I have found this to work. Firstly. Don't put your fitted sheets in the dryer with the other items - they seem to be the worst culprits for tangling everything into a ball. I now put the duvet cover (fasten the poppers/buttons before washing to stop smaller items going inside) and the pillow cases in the dryer with 2 largish DRY towels. This means you are not having to pay any extra to dry the towels and the weight of them keeps the bedding separated enough to dry it and no tangles. I hang the fitted sheets on a clothes horse and wait until they're almost dry and then add them to the dryer with the rest of the bedding and towels for a 30 minute warm cycle. Works for me and I no longer dread bedding washing day!


One solution, which I found off reddit or a forum years ago, is to tie the fitted sheet into a big loose knot. I do this twice which makes the pockets for other items to slip in much smaller.

The tied up part may not be completely dry after one cycle. So afterward, I pull everything else out when it's dry, and if needed give the fitted sheet an extra 10 minutes.


I found two related reddit threads:

Some suggestions from the first:

  • I used to fold my sheet before putting it in the dryer. Just a couple of loose folds with the corners in, not fully folded. It got dry just fine and usually didn't open to envelop the rest of the clothes...

  • I have this problem as well, even if I only throw it in with my regular sheet and pillow cases...

  • This is the only thing that worked for me, as well. loosely tie two opposite corners together.
    – goodguy5
    Commented Feb 10, 2022 at 14:41

I do laundry as needed. We change our sheets weekly. Rather than wait two or three weeks for a full load of sheets, I launder them weekly with our other clothing.Tried this last week and it worked fine. I used a large safety pin to pin all four corners of the fitted sheet together, then folded the sheet once loosely. Worked for me. I do this when putting the laundry into the dryer.


To prevent the fitted sheet from eating other items, I bring the four corners together, twist them together, making sure the resulting sheet loops are straightened, then put it into the dryer. Have done this for years and it works!!! VOILA


After reading the comments here, the one that really worked was this: fold the sheets in squares just like when you put them in the closet, they dry fine without twisting other clothes inside.


I use a long shoe lace, or a piece of kite cord, then bring the opposite corners together, and tie them with the cord, tightly. It looks like a triangle when tied. I dry 1 sheet at a time, and remove from the dryer before dry, so the corners aren't wrinkled. I toss the nearly dry sheet back in the dryer for 5 mins, or less to finish drying the previously tied ends. This actually works well, and can work with blankets, etc as well.


I wash bed sheets inside out, to prevent the fabric print from damaging. This will not stop small things (like socks) from getting caught inside initially, but as you will turn the sheet back outside afterward for drying, these will automatically come out, negating the problem.

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