How to Make a Weighted Blanket
New experiences, such as a trip to the dentist, can be scary or intimidating for a child, especially a child who has autism or other special needs. A weighted blanket can help to calm and comfort a child. Below are instructions for creating a weighted blanket that can easily be taken with the child.
What You'll Need:
- 5 yards of fabric, cut into three pieces: two 2-yard pieces and one 1-yard piece
- Material to fill your blanket (i.e., river rock, pony beads, washable material, etc.) You will need fill equaling approximately five percent of the child’s weight, not to exceed 15 percent.
- Small bags (same number as the number of pockets you create)
- Hook and loop tape (such as Velcro)
- Sewing machine
- Cut the smallest piece of fabric into approximately 4” by 4” squares for pockets
- Cut a 4” piece of Velcro for each pocket and sew the hook side of the Velcro to one edge of each square (see diagram 1)
- Cut a piece of Velcro the same width as your large fabric pieces and sew one side of the Velcro across one side of the large pieces of fabric and the other side of the Velcro to the other piece of large fabric (see diagrams 2 & 3)
- Arrange the squares on the wrong side of one of the larger pieces of fabric, distributing them evenly
- Sew the loop side of Velcro to the blanket so the squares attach on one side
- Sew the squares to the blanket leaving the Velcro side open
- Sew three sides of the two pieces of large fabric together (right sides together)
- Divide the weighted material into small bags (so they can be removed later for washing) and place one in each pocket
- Turn the blanket right sides out and fasten the Velcro at the top.
The weights may be adjusted as the child grows.