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More adventures with weighted blankets (with pictures)

May 31, 2013

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I made this blanket yesterday (repurposed baby blanket made of pink minky one side; leopard-print minky the other, plus the embroidered words ‘Girls Rule!’). It weighs 8.5 lbs and is quilted into 56 sections (14 channels, each divided into 4 shorter lengths). My youngest kid helped me with the weighing and filling, so it went really fast – I was pouring in each 2 oz portion while she measured out the next on the digital postal scale. We didn’t get too many pellets all over the carpet. 😀 I think I’ll always do the filling on carpet from now on, because it’s much easier to clean up spills when you’re not chasing them all over the linoleum!

After filling each section, I compacted the pellets as tightly as I could by shaking them down, and then pinned each section tightly to keep the pellets from moving while I sewed above them. I didn’t break any needles this time! I did, remarkably, run out of pink thread JUST as I reached the final few stitches. That was a first for me!

I hope the recipient, (my neighbor as a surprise gift from her husband), doesn’t want it a different weight, as that will be almost impossible to achieve. This is not a problem with the non-quilted ones (mine, for instance, which is the first one I ever made) because there is no cross-stitching to deal with.

For the record, I think it’s about a 2 – 2.5 hour process per blanket, from opening up one end of the blanket, marking and sewing 13 divisions 2″ apart, doing the math for the weight desired, filling/cross-quilting/filling-cross-quilting until done, and then re-attaching the binding (if any) and sewing across the open end. There’s nothing difficult about it except getting the pellets into the channels (although it helps if you have a very long-necked, wide-mouthed funnel such as I have rigged up), but if you want one and don’t have the time, the people charging $80 on eBay are not gouging you. The poly pellets can cost upwards of $20 all by themselves, the blanket or fabric costs, and there’s all that time involved.

Here are my tools:

The scale and measuring cup:

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The 20 lb box of pellets ($22 postage paid on eBay from lexishouse2011:

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The jerry-rigged long-mouth oil funnel (I paid $2.99 for the fish tank cleaning siphon, which fits perfectly inside the mouth of the funnel).

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Update: My neighbor gave the blanket to his wife, who immediately took it to the couch and sat down with it draped over her. She refused to get up for the rest of the day!!

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