Friday, November 14, 2014

The Pinterest Shoulder Rice Heating Pad Saga

The dictionary defines saga as a long tale of heroic achievement, so I think it works for this little sewing adventure.  I consider this a success despite my family's reactions.  My sister's recent, "Hey, remember those rice bags we made a long time ago?" reminded me of the over-the-shoulder rice heating pad pin I had stuck on my sewing board while wasting hours of time on Pinterest.  You can see the post here. The real original poster's blog with a tutorial is gone, but this blogger has pics that I thought would be enough.

Does anything ever work out as planned in the sewing room?  There were two issues with this and I refuse to take responsibility for the first one.  The original design goes out to the edge of the shoulders which I did as well.  Once my pattern was cut, I hung it on my dress stand only to find that there were "wings" that stuck out where the shoulders curve.  How's the heated rice gonna do its job there?  This required some darts which miraculously worked out.  I am NOT good at this kind of sewing improvisation!
The second problem is entirely my fault.  I thought why not make it longer in the back for when I get carried away with the weight training and need some heat across the upper back?  The answer is BECAUSE IT WILL WEIGH ALMOST 7 LBS.!  This is where the fun began.  After my Keegan tried it on and seemed to crumble under the weight, I thought maybe some ties to hold it on might help with the weight.
Here is that silly version in the photo below.  No, it does not work.  You don't make the weight any better by tying it on to the body, nor should you be walking around with this thing if you have some achy (is that spelled right?) issues.  Carrying that weight may well exacerbate the aches and pains. 
I took the ties off.

This is not a total failure, however.  On the plus side:
  •  if you are sitting or lying down, it's great. In fact, you can even lie on your stomach and the freakin' weight presses down in a rather comforting way nicely pushing the heat down.  
  • sitting back in a chair, it's wonderful.  
  • I was trying to see how long it would hold the heat, but lost track after a half hour.  Were I in school today, I would definitely have been diagnosed with ADHD.  I will just say that it held the heat for a long, long time with the caveat that it took FIVE minutes to heat in the microwave. 
  • it induces gales of giggling from the moment people pick it up.  No one expects a heating pad to have this kind of heft.  
Remember, though, that you can do it as the original designer intended with a much shorter back which would reduce the weight to something more practical thereby making it Pinterest success!


  1. I ... ummmm ... yeah ... errrrrrrrrrrr .... it's very cute, but if I'm going to carry 7 pounds of anything around it's gonna be CHOCOLATE. Just sayin! I just about lost it when you mentioned that Keegan seemed to crumple under the weight ... I may or may not have spit out some cactus pear juice (which is brilliant red, btw ...) onto my computer screen :D So you probably won't use it for hiking - it would be really great for laying down - imagine how soothing the heat would seem! Mind you - if you did decide to wear it on a hike, you could remedy the aches and pains by sitting on the couch with it afterwards and after reheating :D

  2. Well I'm thinking it would just make a perfect bed warmer! Keegan is a good girl to be your guinea pig for a 7lb. heating pad!

  3. I remember my mom always making the most incredible neighbor gifts like these. These DIY Microwavable Heating Pads looks inexpensive, quick to make and seriously easy. I'm going to make one for me.