I remember my mom always making the most incredible neighbor gifts. One year she made pillows into angels (as in: sew a square, stuff it, paint it, pinch it, pull it, embellish it into angelic submission) and some of those neighbors still have them. I’m not nearly that organized nor talented enough on my sewing machine to do that but Sarah had a fantastic idea that even a “straight line” sewer like me can handle. (Though shout out to Sarah and my mom for doing all the sewing for this post!)
These DIY rice bags are inexpensive, quick to make and seriously easy. Popped in the microwave for a minute, they make an excellent hand warmer, tossed over the back of your neck they melt stress away, and tucked under a blanket they’ll keep your toes toasty. They’d also make a really great handmade “favorite things” party gift or a teacher’s gift – because they are easy enough that the kiddos can help – or even do it all!
I wrapped Vivi’s teacher gifts in a clear box with a little shred and a big bow and a cute family gift tag. I love that you can smell the goodness through the box and it looks so luxe!
The size and shape are completely up to you – I’ll give you approximate measurements so that you can base your final product off of ours.
- 100% cotton or other natural, heat resistant fiber fabric (I used less than a quarter of a yard for the whole project – you could recycle a tshirt, a sweater, a men’s dress shirt, a cozy blanket that’s seen better days!)
- white rice (uncooked and inexpensive) (I used about 3 cups, or 1 cup per bag)
- a needle and thread or sewing machine
- essential oils
- Empty your rice into a large baggie or bowl and use essential oils to scent the rice. Add a few drops of EO, stir or seal and shake a bag to distribute the oils. We used lavender in one and peppermint and orange in the others. Adjust the scent to what smells good to you – but remember – you can add more EO, but you can’t take any out!
- Cut your fabric about an inch longer and wider than you want your final product to be – I traced a shoe box lid (a men’s size 11) and folded it in half. (Super specific, right?)
- Line up the fabric, face to face, and sew along three sides (leaving one of the shortest sides open). We used about a ¼ inch inseam. Turn the bag right side out.
Use a funnel to pour rice into the bag – about a cup or so went into each of these). Fold/tuck the fabric inside and then sew closed. By folding inward, you get a nice “finished” edge while still sewing on top of the bag.