"Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
_ William Morris
, 19th century craftsman, designer, writer


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Friday, January 31, 2014

Guerilla Crafting: DIY Hot Water Bottle Cover


In a winter of Polar Vortexes and Bombogenesis, may I suggest we consider an oldie-but-goody: 
the hot water bottle.

An vintage idea that deserves a comeback. Sometimes Nana does know best.

Available in drugstores and online (Amazon) in a number of (affordable!) sizes, shapes and colors, slipping a hot water bottle beneath cold sheets on a chilly night feels like absolute luxury.

The best part, a hot water bottle can stay warm until morning --which means maybe you won't have to crank up the heat quite so high...

In spite of my warm clime in Southern California, I have been a fan of hot water bottles (and drafty old houses!) for years. Recently, I upped my game and made my own hot water bottle cozies using cashmere sweaters from the thrift store! 

You can too:


To start, you'll need a super soft old sweater (nothing scratchy!).

Next, place your hot water bottle on top of the body of the sweater with the mouth of the hot water bottle facing the finished hem of the sweater. The finished hem will be the opening for the cozy, aka, cover.

Step two: Using a permanent marker draw around the hot water bottle leaving an inch margin that will allow for sewing a seam (Note: my photo shows about a 1/2 inch margin - I would recommend extending that to an inch!). Draw extra wide around the mouth of the hot water bottle because you need to be able to be able to transfer the hot water bottle in and out of the cover easily. (See photo below)

I decided to use one side of the sweater as a finished edge to eliminate the need for unnecessary sewing. Brevity is the wit of the soul. Laziness may have played a part too...



 Step three: Using a pair of pinking shears (or sharp sewing scissors) cut just outside of your marking.


I used a large zig-zag stitch (but if you have an overlock machine this would be the perfect time to pull it out!) -and sewed the cut pieces together creating a sort of pocket shape with an opening at the neck. Then, since I expect the cover to see a lot of use, I sewed around it a second time for durability.

*Disclaimer: I never claimed to actually be good at sewing, think of it more like guerilla crafting...

Finally, turn the pocket right side out, slip in your hot water bottle and placing a towel around the neck to protect (pre-heated!) hot water from spilling onto the cover -fill 'er up!
 

Finally, select a length of ribbon or twill tape to tie around the neck of the bottle to hold the cover snug.


Bringin' cozy back. 

Next time those temps take a dive --you'll be ready.


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