Craft Wednesday – Rice Bags

Hello Again!

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Can I just take a minute to whine about something? (That’s why you guys are really here, isn’t it? To listen to someone whine about non-issues? Awesome.)  I am so tired today, and I am down to the wire with this post. I always try to stay a little ahead of these blog posts. I have a couple extra meal pictures in case I don’t cook enough that week. I try to be a week ahead in my Novel Mondays and Craft Wednesdays. And I have a serious reason for this.

I suck at sleeping. Most days I get only 5 hours of sleep. The rest of the time is spent tossing and turning. So sometimes I cannot make myself do things during the day. And on top of that, the temperature here has been going up and down and up and down, which brings me migraines. Ugh.

Anyway, moving on. Thanks for listening and sorry. But, on an up note, this tale of woe leads me into this weeks craft…

RICE BAGS!

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I love rice bags. I make them every single winter and give them to all my friends and family. They are probably sick of getting them, but if I don’t have ten of them in my house, I am not a happy girl.

In the winter, I put them in the microwave for a few minutes and use them under my blankets to keep me warm, or on my head when I’m having a migraine. They are great for aches and pains, too.

And they aren’t just for winter! You can put them in the freezer for the summer time to help cool you down, or anytime to help with the aforementioned aches and pains.

So, I make mine with fat quarters generally. I cut them in half and I can make two covers, or a cover and the actual rice bag. I cut mine in half length-wise and fold them top to bottom to make the rice bag pocket.Here’s the difference between the width and the length.

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Then I press the top edges down to hide the raw edges on the finished bag.

DSC01318You can see in the above picture the difference between cutting length-wise and width-wise. The left was cut width-wise, and has to be folded side-to-side, which creates  continuous top, and one open side and bottom. On the right, it was folded length-wise, which is folded top-to-bottom and has open sides and a closed bottom. I prefer this one because it looks more symmetrical at the end.

If I’m making the rice bag cover, I sew each folded top edge across, then bring them together and sew up the open sides. The inside rice bags are made by sewing up the sides first, turning the bag right side out, then filling the bag halfway with rice and sewing the top edge closed.

Simple. Quick. Easy.

It is also a good idea to trim the excess after you sew the lines. Below, I’ve got a side by side of the sewn edges, and the trimmed edges.

Edges

I’m sure there are more detailed tutorials all over the internet, but that is how I make my bags.

Here are the two covers I made in this “tutorial”.

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Here’s a picture of one of my rice bags with the plain inner bags I’ve been making recently.DSC01325

This way, I can make more covers with the pretty fabric, and the inner bags are cheaper to make.

You can, of course, make these all different sizes and ways. You can make long thin ones for neck bags, or wide fat ones for back pads. You can make compartments so the rice is more evenly distributed just by pouring some rice in and sewing a line across, and repeating to the end of the bag. You can even mix a drop or two of essential oil into the rice to make them scented bags!

UPDATE – I am selling some of my rice bags in my Etsy shop here.

That’s it for this Craft Wednesday! See you Friday.

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