Cold & Hot Comfort Bags

    Posted by  ·  September 2, 2011

    Hello Skip To My Lou readers! I’m Delia from delia creates.

    I’m a mom to two boys who bring me so much joy and who my life pretty
    much revolves around, but I like to sneak in my own hobbies when I can
    and I blog about them here.

    I am excited to be apart of this Holiday Bake Craft Sew Along. I too try
    to get started on Christmas early. It takes the edge off the holiday
    chaos that tends to crop up the day after Halloween and then just keeps compounding up until Christmas day. So I think this series is terrific.

    For today, I’m going to share variations on an old idea. You all may have heard of rice bags. Rice bags are great for use as ice packs or hot packs and they are a cinch to make.

    I just decided to give them a fancier title and spice them up a bit. 🙂

    I made one into an eye mask and laced the rice with lavender essential oils mixed in with some real lavender petals. This would be great for pairing with a massage certificate or a homemade salt scrub. It’s great for reducing puffiness if chilled, or for a sty if heated.

    Then I made some fun shapes for kids. You can use them as ice packs of course. They are much more fun than just a plain old ice pack

    But for winter you’ll want to warm them up in the microwave and bring them to bed with you. They are great for warming up chilly sheets and are also filled with lavender rice so they have a natural calming effect that’s perfect for bedtime as well.

    Or you can make some traditional rectangular ones as nice little hand warmers. These are the simplest of the three to make. So why not whip some up and slide some in your mailbox for your mail carrier and spread some holiday cheer to him/her as well. 🙂

    Fun right?

    Well, let’s make some.

    First thing you do is make a pattern IF you aren’t just doing rectangular sacks.

    Free hand it, use cookie cutters, whatever you want. I made a few drafts before I got what I liked. The teddy bear was killer. You would think it would be easier to draw than the dinosaur…so wrong. 🙁 Anyway…

    Get your patterns cut…

    and then use those patterns to cut your fabric out.

    Sew all the way around, leaving a 1-inch opening for turning it right side out and filling it with rice. Cut notches and slits at the curves to help it turn right side out without puckering the fabric.

    For the rectangular sacks you just need to snip off the corners.

    As I was sewing the curvy pieces, I realized it would be so much easier to just do this…

    and cut the excess away after. Duh…So you might want to try that. It was a little bit easier.

    Turn all your pieces right side out and prepare your rice.

    For the hand warmers I just used plain white rice.

    For the rest I used lavender rice. I mixed in 1/4 cup of petals and about 20 drops of lavender essential oil to oh about 4-5 cups of rice or so – basically all the rice that filled up the eye mask and fun shapes.

    I used a funnel to make the work go fast. Be careful not to over fill. I filled mine up about 3/4 of the way.

    Then I used an invisible ladder stitch to close them all up. Here is a great tutorial for that from Craftzine.

    All done!

    To chill: Place in a ziploc bag and freeze {helps keep out odors and to keep it clean}.

    To heat: Place in the microwave and heat about 30 sec. to 1 min. This can vary between microwaves. Add to the cooking time if needed.

    Just be sure to not get them wet. You don’t want cooked rice and moldy bags. 🙂

    Hmmm…I like this eye mask. I think I’m going to “gift” this one to me.

    I can just make more later right?

    Oh and If you’re looking for more holiday gift ideas check out:

    This ear warmer project.

    Or this handbag project.

    Have fun holiday sewing!
    Thanks for having me Cindy.

    Filed Under: Uncategorized

    Leave a Comment


    1. Monday, November 10th, 2014
      Very cool, I will be making these with my daughters!
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      They won't go flying all around the place, and
      they won't get wet
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      Very good post! We will be linking to this great post on our site.
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    7. Saturday, December 22nd, 2012
      I just made two pair of rectangle ones. But I did make cover for them, so it can be washed when over used. I made them like pillow covers. =)
    8. Friday, December 7th, 2012
      I didn't know you could make them with just normal rice and fabric! *WOW definately gonna make a few!
    9. Juanita
      Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012
      I have one of these and love mine to death...but, I have a question. How do i clean it? Over the years, it's kinda gotten dirty. But, the lavender in it is still strong and I love it!
    10. Diana
      Friday, June 22nd, 2012
      Love this idea. Thank you for the instructions.
      What kind of rice, minute, long grain???
    11. Friday, April 20th, 2012
      You are mentioned in my post, where I made my own rice eye mask! Check it out :)
    12. Saturday, September 10th, 2011
      I love the way you did the lavender rice. I made these last year and just added the lavender flowers. I think the essential oil is an even better touch, and I always have some on hand! I pinned you!
    13. Friday, September 9th, 2011
      Great tutorial! Love the idea of using different shapes. Filed at thanks for sharing!
    14. Judy
      Saturday, September 3rd, 2011
      Great idea! Thank you for the tutorial. I'll have to try these.
    15. Saturday, September 3rd, 2011
      I love making cold & hot comfort bags. I hadn't thought of making them in fun shapes. What a fun idea.
    16. fussyfelines
      Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Such a great idea. thanks. I made a few neck warmers with rice and lavender, love them. I love this idea, how smart :)
    17. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Love the fun shapes for little ones! Thanks for the fun twist! Smiles~Beth
    18. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Love the fun shapes for little ones! Thanks for the fun twist! Smiles~Beth
    19. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Thanks! Added it to my list of things to get started on! :)
    20. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      I've been loving making these lately! The kids use the rectangular ones to throw and catch and balance on their heads just like I did when I was a kids. They're great for throwing into hoops too as they don't roll away. I make them as heat bags by putting wheat and dried lavender in them. Same thing really. Havn't thought to use them as cold packs though - do you just pop them in the freezer? Thanks for great tutorial!
    21. Gailsie
      Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Great idea. I'm an FCS instructor, and these would be great for my beginning sewers. :-)
    22. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      I love the idea of making them for boo boo cold packs. My kids hate the ice packs or frozen peas that I make them use. haha. Great stocking stuffer idea. Thank you!
    23. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Fabulous! I never thought of making them into shapes! My kids love these. These are definitely on my to-do list. Delia is the best!
    24. Jenny
      Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      Thanks for a great tutorial. Looks like a really fun project. These would make great stocking stuffers for Christmas!
    25. Friday, September 2nd, 2011
      I LOVE this! Would love to make those little shaped ones for my kids, niece and nephew. We never have enough kiddie ice packs because they always leave them out and they never make it back to the freezer.

      Where can you purchase lavender petals?