Thursday, May 21, 2009

Homemade Heating Pads (corn bags)

Here is another simple idea I use in place of an electrical heating pad. Not that I have anything against heating pads but I don't think it is safe to fall asleep while using one. It's a fire hazard (it could overheat) plus you could actually burn your skin if it gets too hot and you just sleep right through it.

So here is a safe version to take to bed with you when you have aches and pains or just to give the kids to curl up with on a cold winter night. You can also make little ones that I call Boo-Boo bags and throw them in the freezer for when the kids fall or get bumps and bruises. These aren't as cold as an ice cube so the kids actually like to use them and often ask for them when they get hurt or get stung or bitten by something.

I make these from whatever scrap material I have laying around and field corn that I purchase in bulk from the local Co-op. (Field corn will not pop open in the microwave like popcorn.)

I buy a large bag of corn and then store it. It is so cheap and I always have people asking me if I will make them corn bags so it's nice to always have extra on hand.

I cut two pieces of fabric just a little larger than I want my finished corn bag to be. I then place wrong sides together and sew around three sides. I double stitch these to give it added strength and you don't have to be a great seamstress or even be neat about it. After my 3 sides are sewn I fill the pouch about 3/4 of the way full with corn. Then I sew the end shut. To give it a little neater look I take pinking shears and go all the way around the edges.

If you are making these for your back I prefer to sew tubes into the pouch ( just sew simple lines creating little tubes) and then I fill those tubes with the corn and sew the end shut. This just makes a more comfy bag, especially if you are going to lay on it. It keeps all the corn spread out as opposed to it all sagging to one end or the other of the bag. (The red bag has the tubes sewn into and the smallest bag is a boo-boo bag for the freezer.)
When you need one you can just pop one in the microwave and heat. I usually heat mine for about 2 minutes but everyone's microwave heats differently so I would suggest starting out for maybe a minute and build from there till you figure out the right time and temperature for you.

I hope these directions make sense to everyone. I'm not the best at describing by word how to do a project. If anyone wants to make these and needs a little better explanation then feel free to email me.


lisa said...

I agree with you with the heating pads..My husband years ago worked for UL and he worked in the electric blankets area testing them and he will not allow electric blankets in our home. I have heard of rice in them but not field me field corn will hold heat or cold better. What a neat thing..Lisa

Carmen C. said...

Wow, this dosen't sound too hard at all! I love the boo-boo bag idea! I ordered a pad from a uniform catalog a couple years ago, it was filled with buckwheat hulls and worked fine but expensive, I bet these would work just as well. I just might have to try this!

Olde Dame Penniwig said...

I have made these with rice, but never realized you could use field corn! I bet the corn keeps the heat in longer. What a neat idea. I would add that I give them a real good shake when taking them out of the microwave to move any "hot spots" around and equalize the temp a bit. I have been making them with finished seams inside but NO MORE, I'm using your pinking idea!!!

Stacey said...

I love it! These too will definitely have to be put on my summer to do list, which just keeps getting longer and longer with all of the great ideas I getting from all of my bloggin' buddies. :)

Thanks for sharing!

Hugs and blessings,