Heat Packs on a Warm Day?

Ah, what a beautiful day here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest! It is a gorgeous 81 degrees and I have all my windows open and shorts and a tank top on. I can’t even tell you how much I’m loving it.

After I put my kids down to nap I was unpacking a box of sewing supplies I found some fabric scraps. As I was looking through to see what I had (isn’t it funny how easy it is to forget what’s in your scrap collection?) I found some half-completed projects! And since I do not yet have a sewing table/desk/anything set up I was quite pleased to already have had the sewing completed!

If only I took pictures as I started this project almost a year ago- oh the joys of having our belongings in storage for 11 months- but what I found were fabric rectangles folded in half long ways (or if you think like me, folded “hot dog” style) so that they look like long tubes with a small 1-2 inch opening on one corner. After I flipped them inside out they measured 4inches wide by 18 inches long, but you can adjust the size for whomever you are making this gift. I had used a fat quarter or other miscellaneous fabric scraps I had on hand, just basic 100% cotton, but I’ve also used flannel and fleece in the past and I prefer the soft fuzziness of flannel just a tad more.

To finish this project all you need to do is funnel some rice into the fabric tube and either hand-stitch or carefully use your machine to sew shut the opening. I measured the amount of rice I poured inside by touch. It ended up being approximately two cups of white rice. I like my heat packs a little heavier and fuller, but that choice is up to you! Due to my lack-of-sewing-machine-set-up I opted to hand stitch it shut.

Voila! You’re done! You can either toss this rice bag into the freezer or nuke it in the microwave and you have a hot- or cold- pack!

Here’s some other ways you can customize your heat packs:

  • Fabric- Cotton, flannel, fleece, etc. 
  • Shape- Long and narrow (like I did),  curved to fit shoulders, a shorter and fatter rectangle, smaller (2x2in.) squares for pockets, heart shapes, circles, etc. Also, you can sew addition lines across the bag after you’ve added some of your filler to keep the filling dispersed evenly and it won’t pile up on the ends and be lop-sided.
  • Different fillers- beans, rice, flax seeds, lentils, etc.
  • Scented- Add dried lavender or other herbs to add some aroma therapy scents. 
  • More…? If you have any other things you’ve tried to make your heat packs let me know!

Here’s a link to another tutorial with great photos to help you through, and she even suggested adding loose leaf tea for their scent.

As I grow my blog I will improve my tutorials with photos and more specific instructions, so bear with me!

Thank you for stopping by!


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