Introduction: Vent Your Frustration!

As the grandmother of a three-year-old, sheltering in place here in San Francisco, I had to address the issue of pent-up frustration in my grandson. He is highly verbal, but to defuse the throwing and biting behavior that erupted occasionally, stern measures were warranted. [Obviously, he was missing his pre-school buddies, and Nana just wasn't the same!] His other grandma, having met the behaviors before, suggested the punching pillow.


Plain fabric, two sides, each approximately 14" X 20"

Colorful contrasting fabric scrap, about 12"

Fabric Paint, or sharpies

Stuffing material [I only had quilt batting, so I cut it in strips]

Straight pins

An iron [optional]

Step 1: Punching [and Biting ] Pillow Solution...

The result: the Punching Pillow [biting, too!] This Instructable uses all scrap materials, and of course, other materials may work just as well.

Step 2: Form the Base.

Using a base fabric, cut two rectangles, approximately 14" X 20". Other measurements, and shapes --squares and circles-- would be as effective. Light fabric works well.

Step 3: Cut the Contrasting Fabric.

Using the contrasting fabric, trace and cut two circles. I used a plate to trace the larger one, and a smaller container for the second. Any shape would work; originally, I thought of a target, but monster truck wheels or the letter "O" work as well.

Step 4: Add the Circles...

Sew the circles to the right side of one piece of the base fabric. Pin first, as sewing on a circle can be tricky. I used a zigzag stitch to keep the edges crisp and even.

Step 5: Add Lettering...

Since I had fabric paint, I used that, but sharpies would work, too. It might be wise to try the sharpies on a small piece of fabric first to see if the marker spreads. Heat "set" the paint with an iron if directions require it. BE SURE to put newspaper or another barrier under the base fabric to keep the paint from bleeding through. [I don't know why the paint image is upside down.]

Step 6: Put the Two Base Fabric Pieces Together.

Making sure the paint has "set," put the right sides together, and sew along three sides. One side is left open to allow stuffing.Turn the pillow inside out, so both right sides are on the outside. Press if necessary.

Step 7: Adding the Stuffing...

Since I had only quilt batting, I cut it in strips to stuff the pillow. The strips should allow a smoother and more cushioned filling, but enough structure to offer some resistance.

Step 8: Sewing the Last Side...

When the pillow is stuffed to allow some compression, fold the unfinished edges inward, pin, and sew.

Step 9: Ready for Action...

Your punching, hitting, and biting pillow is now complete. Just know that it's suitable for more than three year-olds-- in fact, I think I'll be using this one, too, in these challenging times. Enjoy!