Weighted blankets are a popular trend with many health benefits. People are gravitating towards these types of blankets because they are proven to reduce symptoms of anxiety and to help with insomnia. The appeal of this blanket is that it gives off a sensation like you are being hugged. These types of blankets are especially cozy for the winter season.
However, weighted blankets can be expensive. If you want to tackle a new project, and save some money, making a weighted blanket is the project for you. The best part about making a weighted blanket yourself is you can choose whatever materials from Mary Maxim’s product and size you want.
Sewing is the most common way to make a weighted blanket; however, if you’re feeling extra creative, you can crochet a weighted blanket. Bernat yarn works exceptionally well because they have thick yarn in their collection, as well as yarn specific to blankets.
If you’re new to the crafting world, remember that this isn’t your grandma’s yarn – making a weighted blanket is an intermediate level project. There are patterns out there for making blankets, and you can add a few extra materials to turn it into a weighted blanket.
For deciding the size of your blanket, there are a few factors to consider. First of all, if you’re planning on making a blanket for your bed, a larger size is ideal. If you want a blanket to use when you’re on the couch, it will have to be a size that you can carry. A throw blanket size would be a good fit for this type of project.
As for the weight of the blanket, the general rule of thumb is 10% of your body weight. The blanket can give or take a few pounds within this range.
Many people experiment with various types of fill materials, but the ideal material is plastic polypropylene pellets. This material resembles small pebbles, and the main draw is that they are generally machine washable.
If you are looking to sew your blanket, other materials for your blanket include the following:
- Blanket fabric for both the front and back of the blanket
- A kitchen scale to measure the weight of the blanket
- A ruler and pins
- Matching thread
- Sewing machine
Materials for Weighted Blanket
You may be familiar with a few unusual materials for weighted blankets. These blankets frequently contain more natural inside weights like pebbles, sand, or hulled grain. Various materials can be employed to fill a weighted blanket. Glass beads and poly pellets are the two most popular fillers. Still, you can also use sand, rice, or buckwheat hulls. It’s crucial to pick the suitable material because each has advantages and disadvantages. The most widely used weighted blanket filling is poly pellets.
1. Line and Rayon
Linen and Rayon are one of the most durable choices for a weighted blanket. In comparison to other solutions, linen-rayon weighted blankets are significantly more robust. This blanket can withstand animals and children playing while keeping the filling in place. This is the ideal option for people with low sensitivity to textures. Others complain that the fabric can occasionally be harsh and grating.
2. Micro Glass Beads
Another frequently utilized substance is plastic poly pellets; however, micro glass beads offer a smooth and sustainable substitute. In addition to having a soothing texture, micro glass beads are typically denser than other materials, such as poly pellets. This results in less filling, resulting in a thinner, more mobile form. These tiny glass beads are machine washable, doing cleaning and maintaining your weighted blanket simple. Lastly, micro glass beads are non-toxic and hypoallergenic, making them a fantastic choice for people allergic to particular fabrics.
If you want an incredibly soft blanket, consider Minky. With its velvety feel, minky will provide you with the utmost comfort. According to studies, those who utilize Minky material typically have higher levels of melatonin and serotonin. You may get a smoother, plusher blanket from this cloth. You may match your preferences by choosing from various designs and colors in Minky.
4. Steel Beads
Steel beads are often used to fill weighted blankets because they are strong, can be washed in a machine, and are heavy, so you need less of them to get the right weight and pressure. The most significant disadvantage of steel beads is that they frequently make more noise than other materials, including micro glass beads. A steel bead-filled blanket might not be ideal for you if you are sensitive to sound, especially while sleeping.
Cotton blankets are a good choice if you want something lighter and more relaxed in weight. Cotton is supple, breathable, and simple to clean, so it is the perfect material for weighted blankets. Weighted blankets made of satin cotton are the best choice for those who overheat in bed. You may wash your cotton blanket in the washing machine gently if you check the cleaning instructions. You can get cotton-weighted blankets in a variety of designs. Most of them will resemble conventional bed covers as well.
6. Sand and Pebbles
Because of their finer texture and ability to be spread evenly, many people use micro glass beads. Grain, small stones, and sand can all be utilized as a filler! Some people utilize them in their homemade blankets even though they are not frequently included in blankets sold on the market. Although choosing this filling form might be less expensive, these materials might be of inferior quality and require more attention. The sand must not be damp because if it is, it will clump and become a problem in the future. Another inexpensive filling that some people use in their weighted blankets is pebbles. If you use pebbles as the filling, ensure they are uniform in size and shape. The more unbalanced and uncomfortable the weight is on top of you, the bigger the pebbles are. This type of filling also has the drawbacks of being noisy and cumbersome to maneuver.
7. Flannel and Fleece
Flannel and fleece are two of the most popular materials for weighted blankets. For the colder months, flannel is great since it keeps you warm. This is the ideal alternative that sits in between cotton and fleece. This cloth is available in many different patterns, including plaid. Fleece is a soft material that makes a great blanket for the winter. Fleece is the finest material if you want a super-soft blanket that will keep you warm while camping and comfortable next to the fireplace. Look for different materials if you tend to sweat while you’re sleeping. These materials trap body heat since they don’t breathe as well.
Making the Weighted Blanket
Once you have found a blanket pattern, sew your blanket and flip it inside out. Then, make vertical lines at the top opening and measure out your weighted filling. Next, fill each column with filling and then move your blanket up, so the beads transfer to the bottom of the blanket. Pin one row, making a row of squares, and then sew the row together. Keep repeating these steps until all your squares and rows are sewn, and then seal the blanket.
For a crochet blanket, since the Bernat yarn is so heavy, all you need to do is find a crochet pattern that appeals to you and use the bulkiest fabric possible to add weight.
Now that you know how to make a weighted blanket, you can reap the many benefits of this type of blanket. Challenge yourself with a project that will keep you busy this winter, as well as save you money.
Benefits of Weighted Blankets
One of the tools used by psychiatry and therapy clinics for its patients is a weighted blanket, commonly called a gravity blanket. And today, anyone needing better sleep or treating sensory difficulties may have more access to it outside of a therapeutic setting. Despite the weighted blanket’s existence for many years, its non-medical potential for enhancing sleep has recently come to light. Yet, a weighted blanket does more for you than just facilitates restful slumber.
1. Boosts the Quality of Sleep
People with sensory difficulties or insomnia struggle to get a good night’s sleep. According to research, using a thick blanket kept a person from moving around while they slept, which improved it.
2. Relieves insomnia
A weighted blanket is a type of deep-pressure therapy called touch stimulation therapy. This therapy involves applying steady pressure to the sensory organs, which releases serotonin, a neurotransmitter that controls sleep.
3. Encourages the production of melatonin
Melatonin is a hormone that encourages sleep and assists in controlling the person’s circadian rhythm, which is the sleep cycle. It seems that melatonin and serotonin are connected, as melatonin is also created when the weight of a heavy blanket stimulates serotonin. So, utilizing a weighted blanket may be beneficial if you want to increase your serotonin and melatonin levels.
4. Reduces feelings of anxiety
Examples of how anxiety disorders can significantly affect our lives include disrupting our sleep, causing sleep disorders, causing weight gain or loss, and even causing mood changes. The ability of a weighted blanket to assist in soothing the nervous system, thus reducing anxiety and fostering better sleep, is one of its most alluring advantages.
5. Enhances mood
People experience depressive, socially awkward, emotionally draining, or low-mood days. Whatever the cause, whether it be a disease or a change in hormone levels, we frequently need to find a solution to this issue before it gets worse. The deep touch pressure a weighted blanket provides is one of its advantages. As was already said, when serotonin production is enhanced, this can aid in mood improvement. And while the body is gently pressed, your cortisol or stress levels may also decrease, improving your entire inside-out feeling.