All of us know it's hard to keep warm in the cold winter months. This Instructable will show you how to make a rice bag that you can hold - on your lap, over your feet/ankles, across your neck, anywhere you're cold. They can also be used to heat away aches and pains.
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Step 1: Materials

You will need:
Fabric (about a 10x10 square - or whatever size you want, but I made a 10x10)
Rice or Corn (not popcorn)
Container to Pour Rice With (optional)
Sewing machine (technically optional, but I wouldn't recommend sewing these without it - your filling will be everywhere)

Step 2: Cut the Fabric

Cut a 10x10 (or whatever size you're using) piece out of your fabric, making sure that the fabric is folded over on itself, making a double layer with the edges lining up. Otherwise you will need to cut two pieces out and sew an extra edge.

Step 3: Iron the Fabric

Iron out all wrinkles, then fold your fabric in half, making sure that the good side (the side you want to see when you're done) is on the inside.

Step 4: Start Sewing

Start on the edge indicated in the last picture, making sure to leave seam allowance. Sew to the next corner. Once you finish that edge, make sure to cut off any thread hanging. Sew the opposite side next.

Step 5: The Tricky Part (optional)

Start sewing on the last unsewn edge. The result we want with this step is to have about an inch and a half  of stitches on both sides. This step isn't necessary, but it will make it a whole lot easier later.

Step 6: Reverse the Bag

Now you need to turn the bag inside out. Make sure that you get all of the corners pushed out and crisp. You can use a pencil, a corner turning thingie, or your finger.

Step 7: Turn and Iron the Open Edge

Now take the edge indicated in the last picture and turn it. The edges need to be folded inside neatly and then ironed down. After you fill it with rice or corn, you're going to sew it, so it needs to look nice and neat.

I have several large rice bags for sore muscles. Been heating and reheating for years. Earlier this week, I
made a small one, with brown rice, for applying Jamberry nails. After a
few times in the microwave, it started smoking. Cut it open and the
rice was burned and blackened. What the heck! Ever happen to you?

AmandaT14 months ago

My friends made me one for Christmas one year. They used hand towels. Works great. I nuke mine for 70 seconds. Works great, and last hours.

rocketman73 years ago
Works well! How long to heat it?
Hello Kitty (author)  rocketman73 years ago
Probably about 2 minutes. Depending on your microwave, you will probably have to tweak the time by 30 seconds. But on 4 or 5 different microwaves, microwave time for me has always been between one minute and thirty seconds (1:30) and two minutes and thirty seconds (2:30). Of course, if you microwave more than one rice bag at a time, you will need to double that. :)
Okay Thanks!
Hello Kitty (author)  rocketman73 years ago
mferber883 years ago
I've made a few of these and found that barley works very well and doesn't lead to moisture as some rice does. There's also no smell as with corn. Also, I sewed "sections" about 2 inches from the top & bottom so that the filling doesn't shift from one end to the other but it can move from section to section through top/bottom. Just thought I'd pass on! They're great and a very nice gift!
sunshiine3 years ago
brabantia5 years ago
 So pretty! How long does it keep?
Hello Kitty (author)  brabantia5 years ago
Generally several years - until you bust it, burn it, or it starts looking really mangy. That's one of the reasons we (my family and I) started using rice. It's harder to burn it and it doesn't smell as bad.
Thx! I've used cherry pips and olive pips in the past but will give rice a try. Seems to be less fussy. (with the pips, you have to collect, clean and dry them first)
b1russell4 years ago
OK!  I've just got to incorporate this into the mittens I'm making!  Oooh, yeah!  Micro-mittens!  No more frost-bitten fingers!  Gotta love it.  Thanks, kitty.
jkoski5 years ago
oatmeal also works, and smells good... just a thought ;]
islegirl5 years ago
I've made these as well and they're great! I also recommend using rice instead of corn as the corn smell is pretty strong when heated up. What I also do is sew channels into the bag so the rice is evenly distributed. They make great gifts too!