Friday, April 21, 2017

Weighted (Sensory) Blanket

I made my first weighted blanket recently, and it wasn't as intimidating as I thought it would be!  Ok, I was nervous about bringing a 10 lb. box of poly pellets into the house...with little ones it's easy to imagine the whole thing getting dumped out by someone (probably a 2 year old)!  I found this great tutorial from Mama Smiles (thanks!), gathered the supplies (2 different fabrics, 1 and a 1/4 yd of each, 10 lb box of poly pellets, and a postal scale), and did some quick math.  The recommendation for children is to have it weigh 10% of their body weight, plus 1-2 lbs, but no more than 15% of their body weight.  I wanted my blanket to come out to just under 4.5 lbs, so filled each of the 100 squares with .7 oz of pellets.  I used a 1/4 C measuring cup, placed it on my scale, and hit the tare button on to zero it out.  The cup was small enough that I could scoop some pellets out of the box, weigh them, then dump straight into one of the tunnels without a funnel or PVC pipe.  The total size of the blanket is about 40 in. x 40 in., so it should be a good size for sleeping and snuggling for quite awhile.  I figure once it's too small for sleeping with, it will still be a good size for a lap blanket for car rides or lounging around.

One tip I have is once you get to the second to last and then last row of the blanket, only fill a few squares at a time, otherwise it's too much to manage, and becomes very easy to spill pellets everywhere.  On the second to last row I filled 5 squares at a time, then sewed across those squares, and then filled the rest and sewed.  On the very last row, I only filled 2-3 at a time and then sewed across them.  I did double stitch every column and row, just to ensure durability.  I figured with washing and all those pellets tumbling in the dryer against the fabric, it will be a little rougher on the fabric than a regular blanket.

This was a fun project, and after a few family members tested it out, I've decided to definitely make one (or two...) for us!