I was looking for some natural ways to relieve stress for a friend and remembered these awesome fabric tubes of warmth and relaxation. A friend of mine gave me a rice bag in college...and, I'm not sure where it went. They're so easy to make and smell so lovely! Lindsay Wilkes with The Cottage Mama has a tutorial for a beautiful embroidered therapeutic bag and cover (for washing)! I wanted to make mine longer so it could be wrapped around the sides of my neck. A cover or sleeve is a great idea for washing, but, I was in a major time crunch to make one for a gift for a friend who was leaving for college the next day! You can literally whip up one of these rice bags in 30 minutes or less! This pouch can be warmed in the microwave for 1 or 2 minutes (or, even kept in the freezer) and placed on your neck and shoulders (or any achy muscles really). It's quite soothing!
Here's what you need:
- Cut piece of fabric 10" x 24"
- 8 TBSP Dried Lavender Herb (not the easiest thing to find when you're in a time crunch; I found mine at our local Old Town Spice Shoppe after much searching the area, but, you can google and buy too if you have more time).
- 2.5 lb bag of rice
- bowl & funnel
- Optional: ribbon to tie near the ends, maybe like 14" or so
- Fold the fabric pretty sides together, lengthwise. Then, sew the 2 short sides and the one long side (not the folded side, obviously). NOTE: leave about a 1.5" opening so as to be able to turn right side out.
I sewed a second stitchline about an 1/8" in for added strength/support.
- This part is optional, but, I wanted the ends of the bag to be flat. So, you open the sewn corners and pinch them in opposite of how they were sewn and stitch a line up 1" from the point of the corner for all 4 corners.
Here are two sewn stitchlines to make on of the ends of my bag.
- As we only left a 1.5" opening, push fabric through the opening with a pen or thin blunt object (as shown below). Pull completely right side out.
Almost done! Round up your ingredients.
- I mixed about 2.5 lbs of rice (I had a 5 lb. bag because I wanted to make more) and 8 TBSPs of dried lavender.
- Fill the bag about 3/4 full.
And, you're done! I placed some ribbon ties about 3-4" from the ends to keep most of the rice in the center so that it wouldn't all fall to the ends and run thin in the middle (where it would be most prevalent on the neck). But, it's not completely necessary.