Projects & Improvements

4 Ways to Make Your Own Weighted Blanket and Never Leave the House Again

published Mar 15, 2019
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(Image credit: Javier Díez/Stocksy)

Weighted blankets have been around for awhile, but more and more people are catching onto their benefits these days. If you haven’t tried one, the extra weight provides comfort and mimics the feeling of being hugged. Snuggle under one to help reduce anxiety levels, or even get a better night’s sleep. (If you’re trying one out for medical reasons, you might want to speak to your doctor first.) The blankets are even sometimes used in Occupational Therapy for autism. The only bad news is that they can be expensive, most over $100 (although we have seen this one from Target for $70).

Making your own weighted blanket will not only save money, but also let you customize the size, fabric, and weight to fit your needs. All you need is your fabric of choice, a sewing machine, some weights, and a basic scale.

Before you even cut any fabric, there’s a little math involved. You’ll need to plan out how large you want your blanket, how many weighted sections to make, and calculate how much the completed blanket should weigh. Divide the total blanket weight by the number of weighted sections to determine how much filler you should put in each section.

There are a few different schools of thought about the ideal blanket weight. Most sources recommend your blanket weigh roughly 10 percent of a person’s body weight. National Autism Resources, however, says an effective blanket’s weight can be up to 20 percent. Essentially, it should be heavy enough to give you all those good “grounding” effects, but light enough to remove at will.

Each of these tutorials has their own preferences for blanket fillers and sewing tips they discovered along the way. Reminder: If you plan to wash your blanket, buy filler that’s washer- and dryer-safe.

(Image credit: The Sorry Girls)

The Sorry Girls use fleece and uncooked rice as the basis for their version of a cozy weighted blanket. Their video shows you every step of the way, and shares two other relaxing DIYs to help you de-stress.

(Image credit: Shrimp Salad Circus)

Lindsay of Shrimp Salad Circus chose flannel as her material of choice, and recommends either poly beads for the filler, which are slightly more affordable, or more eco-friendly glass ones.

(Image credit: Lemon Lime Adventures)

Dayna’s mermaid lap pad is pure magic. If you’re looking for a version that can keep your child calm in new environments, a smaller weighted item is easy to transport. The color-changing scales on the pillow she used are an extra layer of fun, and the glass aquarium rocks are easy to source. See Lemon Lime Adventures for more details.

(Image credit: Emily Grace King)

Emily’s blanket has channel tufting, which lets you wrap yourself up more tightly in the blanket’s comforting embrace. It requires a little more sewing, and funnel to add the filler, but it’s a nice twist on the classic square seams.