Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Corn Heating Bag Tutorial

Years ago, I was given a corn filled bag we would heat up in the microwave.  We would put the bag at the foot of the bed under the covers to keep our feet warm or we would put on a spot on our body that was sore.

Since then, we have gone through several bags and recently I needed to sew more to replace some of the bags that had gotten worn.  My daughters love to have them in bed with them (I have one child who is always cold at night) and I also use mine quite often to place on my belly to get some relief from endometriosis pain.  You simply put it in the microwave for 3-4 minutes and then reheat as needed.  When I put mine at the foot of the bed under the covers at night, it is often a little warm even in the morning.  I don't have to worry about any wires like a normal heating pad and it forms to wherever you need heat (i.e. shoulder, neck, knee, etc).

So here is a quick tutorial on how to make your own!  They are VERY EASY to make.

First,  where do you find field or feed corn?  Locally, I buy mine at the Neighborhood Store here in Matthews. You can find them here:  I bought 2 bags that were 10 pounds each and I made about 4 corn bags with that much.   I (actually my hubby) did have to sift through the corn to remove bits of corn husks but it was all worth it.

Next, you will need flannel for your bag.  You can also use a cotton quilting print as well.  I like flannel because it is soft.  The most important thing is using a fabric that is 100% cotton.  So resist the urge to use fleece....polyester may catch fire in a microwave so you really want to use all cotton materials in your bag.  I would say that a yard of flannel fabric will make 3 corn bags!  And you can't make just one....

Cutting your fabric:  I cut my fabric using a rotary cutter, mat and ruler.  You can also use a measuring tape, pen/pencil, and scissors if you don't have those items.

I cut my piece of fabric 11" long by 36" wide.  This piece is folding in half (the way it comes from the store) and the fold is on the left hand side.  

See the fold in the above picture?  This way, you just have to measure and then cut on the three sides. I first cut a piece of fabric that was 11" long and then I turned it, put the fold on my start line on my mat and then cut it at the 18" line on the right hand side.  Unfolded, it measures 36"!

Sewing your bag:  Flip your fabric so the wrong sides are on the outside and keep the fabric folded.  Next pin down the long sides.  You will be sewing these first.

 Sew down each long edge using a 1/2" seam allowance.

Here is the bag with both long sides sewn!

Next, turn your bag right side out.  I actually gave it a quick ironing after I turn it out but that is me.

You will now fold and iron down the top of your bag.  This will make it much easier to sew it closed.  Using your seam gauge, measure 1/2" and fold the fabric towards the wrong side fabric or inside of the bag.  Fold and iron all around the top of your corn bag.

Now fold down the same edge another 1/2" and iron this as well.

Now it is time to add the corn.  I fill my bags a little more than half full.  You don't want to fill it up too much or else it will be hard to sew closed and you want the bag to be flexible.

Sew across the top of the bag to close it.  I sew two parallel lines across the top to make sure it securely holds all the corn.   

You are all done!  Now go throw it in the microwave for 4 minutes and enjoy the warmth!

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