Friday, October 26, 2012

Weighted Blanket

A gal in our homeschool group put out a plea for anyone who sews ~ I answered.
She wanted a weighted blanket made for her son who has recently (last 6 months or so) been diagnosed with Aspbergers Syndrome, which is in the Autism spectrum.
I had never heard of a weighted blanket but she sent me some information and I decided to try it.
She purchased the fabric & the little weighted pellets (think small plastic rock salt).
She chose navy for one side and a plaid flannel for the other.
I washed both fabrics ahead of time ~ if they were going to shrink at all I wanted it to be before the construction.  This blanket ended up with 8 1/2 pounds of pellets spread throughout the little sections and some polyester fiberfill in each section for some cushey-ness.

Here are some pics of the construction.....

First, the fabrics were ironed and measured to make sure the were the same width.
Then with right sides together, the fabric was sewn on the 2 long sides and across the bottom ~ I think the measurements ended up being 2 yards long and about 43 or 44 inches across.
Then I flipped the whole thing right side out, ironed the seems and then topstitched the edges all the way around to reinforce the seams...then the fun began~
I measured 6 inch intervals across the width of the blanket and marked with white chalk, then sewed.
Next was chalk marking the grid across to determine how many sections would fit on the whole blanket.  Then took the total weight of what they wanted the blanket to be and divided it between each section...are you confused yet?  I was, I got Greg to help me with the weight measurements.
I had my kitchen scale upstairs, to measure the pellets out and drop into row, then add a handful of fiberfill for the cushey-ness And sewed across making one completed row.
The lesson I learned after the first row was to do the pellets first and then the fiberfill ~ it helps hold them so they don't interfere with the needle and sewing (figured this out after I sewed the first row and broke 3 needles in the process)

I did figure out that 3 of my large handfuls equaled the amount needed in each section, so after the first 2 rows I didn't weigh them.  To me the blanket was getting awfully heavy, so the top 3 rows I cut back to 2 handfuls on each section.  The weight was still there but not as "strangling" feeling when it would be pulled up on his abdomen/chest area.

grid marked and first row weighted and sewn

completed blanket
After completing the blanket, it was washed and all the white chalk grid marks disappeared.

From what I understand, the weight of the blanket is supposed to help the children calm down, concentrate, or just relax.

I hope it works!


  1. What a blessing you are Donna - an inspiration to me. At church, (I work in the children's program) we sometimes use large beanbags for certain children to hold on their laps. It does seem to help them calm down and concentrate, especially the littlest ones. Very interesting project. I do hope it helps him.

  2. Awwww, your comments are sweet Kathleen. Thanks for the encouragement. Its fun to learn new things & I hope it helps him too. I was thrilled that I wasn't busting 3 needles on every line! That would have been very pricey!

  3. Hi Donna, These blankets really do work. I made one for my daughter who has mild autism and they are so worth the time and effort. They also make weighted vest that are great! You did a great job! And I'm sure the family you made it for will be very blessed.


Welcome to the farm ~ we are a blended family with 7 children (3 are married), 4 grandsons, 5 dogs, 3 rabbits, and 15 chickens living on 3 acres in Georgia. I love crafting, sewing, cooking & canning, recipes of all kinds, reading, playing with my little buddies, family time, travel, pinterest and most of all the Lord.