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Kendall Rayburn
BY Kendall Rayburn
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10 Great DIY Weighted Blanket Tutorials

For kids with high energy levels or sensory processing issues, a weighted blanket can mean the difference between a poor night’s sleep and having your child soothed into a great night’s sleep. Many children and families have benefited from the use of a weighted blanket in their home. But, weighted blankets can be costly, so we’ve rounded up 10 DIY Weighted Blanket tutorials for those of you who are A) an experienced sewer, or B) have no sewing experience at all!

Why Weighted Blankets?

According to an article on Forbes, the weight in a weighted blanket “causes the brain to release neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine that improve moods and induce a calming effect.” The blanket works to use it’s weight to calm your child.

Children with excessively high energy levels find these blankets or weighted lap pads soothing for bedtime or throughout the day. They can bring one to school for quiet times. They can wrap them around their shoulders or whole body, or place them on their lap during desk work and reading times for the extra calming deep pressure input their bodies crave,” Sensory Processing Disorder.

How Much Should Your Blanket Weigh?

It’s recommended that you defer to your occupational therapist for their recommendation of weight for your child and their specific size and needs. If you do not have an Occupational therapist to consult with, SensaCalm (a company that makes weighted blankets) recommends using the following formula:

For a small blanket take 10% of their body weight plus one pound. For a medium blanket take 10% of their body weight plus two pounds. For an adult-length blanket take 10% of their body weight plus three pounds. 

10 Great DIY Weighted Blanket Tutorials:

Ready to start planning to make your weighted blanket? Here are 10 great tutorials to reference! If you try out one of these tutorials, be sure to come back and let us know what your experience was! Or, if you have a different tutorial you’d like to recommend, please leave it in the comments below!

1 | Weighted Blanket Tutorial | The Mommyhood Life

Want to create your own weighted blanket? This post has an easy tutorial using Poly-Fil and an an adorable dinosaur fabric, it even has a fun fringe detailing as well!

2 | How to Make a Sensory-Friendly Weighted Blanket | Mama Smiles

This weighted blanket tutorial gives tips for sewing machines, materials to use, and tips for making blankets using other fabrics. Plus, get a free pattern to use to construct your own weighted blanket!

3 | DIY Weighted Blanket | I Love My Kids

This tutorial gives tips for making your own weighted blanket, best materials to use, and a plan for getting started. The project time for this blanket is around two hours which makes this a fairly fast project that’s perfect for the weekend!

4 | How to Make a Weighted Tie Blanket (that’s machine washable!) | Parenting Chaos

This weighted blanket tutorial is a little bit different than the rest, it uses fleece as the main fabric and a technique of creating weighted squares and sewing those onto the inside of the blanket. It’s a tie blanket so there is an element of fringe added which makes construction of the outer edges of the blanket as easy as tying a knot!

5 | Sew a Weighted Blanket for Children with Sensory Disorders | Nancy Zieman

This post shares a little bit about Project Linus, provides free instructions for creating a weighted blanket, and even utilizes velcro for stuffing of the blanket. The tutorial even shows how you can utilize sheets to fill and weigh the blanket down as opposed to using Poly-Fil.

6 | Calming the Senses with Weighted Blankets | Craft Nectar

This is a great tutorial for making a weighted blanket and it also provides ways to get your little one involved in the process. The post provides a free, downloadable pattern as well for a visual layout of the whole process.

7 | No-Sew Weighted Blanket Using Rice | Jest_Tu_Positive

This is a great tutorial for those who wish to use rice as a weight instead of the Poly-Fil. It is also completely no-sew which makes this a quick and easy project to whip up in just minutes! Check out the full tutorial to see how it’s made!

8 | DIY Tie Weighted Blanket (using stones!) | The GFCF Lady

This weighted blanket is made using a pre-made blanket kit and if you can believe it, river rocks! This is the only weighted blanket tutorial we came across that uses stones and a pre-made kit so this tutorial is perfect for someone who has no sewing experience and wants something quick and easy.

9 | Homemade Adjustable,Washable, Weighted Blanket | Autism: Understanding the Puzzle

This tutorial is great because the blankets are washable and adjustable. The blanket uses a series of snaps and velcro and the weighted packs can be removed for easy washing.

10 | Patchwork Weighted Blanket Tutorial (with video!) | Sew in Love {with Fabric}

This post has an amazing tutorial for making an adorable patchwork weighted blanket, and even provides a video for those who are visual learners. Be sure to check out the tutorial for this fun, colorful, weighted blanket!

Does YOUR child benefit from using a weighted blanket?

Leave your feedback in the comments below!

 

Related Articles: 15 Places to Find Custom Weighted Blankets and Other Products | Weighted Blankets 13 Stores to Choose From

 

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DIY Weighted Blanket


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  • Red Barn Blankets

    You advice of 10% of body weight is misleading and incomplete.

    • Sally

      Why? What is proper weight?

      • Karlton Kemerait

        Hi Sally,

        It’s not that the weight is wrong, it’s just that weight must be combined with the size of the blanket to be certain that it is appropriate. For example, imagine a 10 pound small blanket that is 37″ x 52″, this results in a pressure of roughly 0.749 pounds per square foot. Now, imagine that same 10 pounds in a queen size blanket 62″ x 82″. Because of the larger blanket size the same weight would result in a much lower pressure of 0.283 pounds per square foot. This means it will feel significantly lighter than you might be expecting or needing. This is why when people say I want a 12 pound blanket it requires a discussion to talk about what size the blanket will be. Also keep in mind that the common advice of 10% of body weight actually comes from a study on children’s school backpacks done by the American Academy of Pediatrics. It doesn’t really apply to weighted blankets. In a backpack the child must carry the entire weight of the backpack … if it weighs 12 pounds then the child must carry 12 pounds … but with a blanket a large percentage of the blanket is on the mattress and not on the person using it … the larger the blanket to more of it’s weight is lost because it is on the bed and not on the individual. This is also the reasoning for making a weighted blanket as close the size of the individual as possible (at least with children” otherwise you end up having to add an unsafe amount of weight to a large blanket for the child to be able to feel any pressure at all.

        Unfortunately there have been no safety studies done on children and weighted blankets (there was one done for adults). The 10% figure isn’t a bad guideline and has been adopted by most OT’s and Physicians, but it needs to considered relative to the size of the blanket and not on its own.

        Hope that helps a bit

        – Karlton (Red Barn Blankets)

  • Janet Schooler

    I am making my first weighted blanked. I have the 2 pieces of fabric sewed together and have the columns sewed. I was ready to start filling with the beads but noticed one of the long edges if very crooked. I need some ideas on how to fix this. I’m very frustrated at this point!!

    • Shellie Grube Hall

      Maybe try marking your sewing lines with a fabric marking pencil. That will give you a straight guideline to sew on.

  • Dianne Snider Erwin

    If I am making a weighted blanket for a 40 lb. child that measures 40 x 52, how much should I put in each square?

    Thanks!

    • Tommyguard3

      Might be too late to answer, but it doesn’t matter the size of the blanket it matters the number of squares.

      So as a general rule of thumb a 40lb child would have a 5lb blanket. (Not an expert this is based on what I read on google, I suggest doing your own research or talking to an expert).

      If you were doing 4″ squares you would have 10 across and 13 long. So 130 total. You would divide 80oz (5×16) by 130 and would put 0.6oz in each square.

      That’s just an example but you would divide the total weight by the number of squares.

      • Dianne Snider Erwin

        That is exactly how I did it. My grandson seems to like it.

        Thanks!

        • Dianne Snider Erwin

          Getting the pellets all the way to the bottom of each channel was a problem since I used Minky fabric on one side. The pellets didn’t slide down to the bottom very well. My husband happened to have an attachment that goes on our vacuum cleaner hose used to clean out the dryer vent that I could use to put down each channel and pour the pellets for each section down it. That helped a lot to get them all the way to the bottom of each channel.

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  • Bethany Brewer

    Oh man, I just found out weighted blankets were a thing and I’m *craving* one!

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