Heaven on Earth

Heaven on Earth

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Toasty Toe Warmers

 I know these are not a new idea.  They are just like a bean bag (but without the beans).  I love them for cold weather.

These little bags can be tucked between the covers of your bed, inside your coat pocket, even into your boots before you put them on.  Once, when we were at the Homestead, our daughter had an earache and there was not a hot water bottle to be found.  I whipped one of these up with a cotton dish towel I had and some rice from the pantry.  Instant comfort.

I filled these pink bags with hard winter wheat from my storage, some broken cinnamon sticks and whole cloves.  Just spritz them with a little water before heating to keep the wheat or rice from drying out and pop them in the microwave for 2 minutes on high .  The spices will heat up and emit a pleasant smell.  I think the cocoa bean hulls that are packaged as garden mulch would be terrific inside of these.

*Just a note if you are using wheat, make sure that your hand and machine stitches are small.  You wouldn't want the filling to escape from the bag.

  • Two 10 1/2 x 5 1/2 inch pieces of fabric (or do as I did and cut one 20 1/4 x 5 1/2 inch piece of fabric and fold it in half.  The folded side will not need to be seamed, saving time) 
  • Sewing machine
  • Hand sewing needle with matching thread to stitch the opening closed
  • Approximately 1 1/4 cup of rice or wheat kernels for filling
  • A small amount of whole spices or lavender (optional) to add to the filling
  • Straight sewing pins

Lay (or fold) your fabric with the right sides together.  Pin on each side so that the fabric doesn't slide around.  With a small stitch length (I set my Pfaff stitch length to 2), machine stitch around the fabric, leaving a small opening large enough to pour the filling into the bag.  I back stitch at the beginning and end of each line of stitching.
Diagonally clip the corners and turn the bag right side out.  Press the bag, as well as pressing open the seam where you left the opening (this will make an even edge to hand stitch).
Fill the bag,
pin the opening closed and hand stitch the opening with tight, small stitches.
 AGAIN, make sure your stitches are small enough that the filling won't escape the bag.

You're done.  Heat the bags for 2 minutes in your microwave and put them anywhere you need warmth.
They make great gifts, too.


  1. Very nice! I've been taking the hot water bottle to bed, but perhaps I should stitch up some rice/wheat buddies.

  2. I've always wanted to make some of these but I worried about the rice rotting or something. It must not happen as they sure seem to be popular. Yours are very pretty!!!

  3. Such pretty ones! I love the beautiful fabric you used. I should make some. We were laughing the other day saying it is over 70 in the house and we are still freezing. My feet and hands could use these little lovelies!

  4. Hi Bonnie, how long can these be reuse before the wheat hulls go bad or because they are hulls they never go bad. I have 50lbs of white winter wheat downstairs and what a terrific idea:-).
    PS still no snow where I live. now I am sad

  5. What a terrific idea, Bonnie. Thanks for sharing that. I will have to put it on my project list! :)

  6. Love these!

    As I type...my toes are keeping warm on one of the rice bags that I made last Fall :)

  7. Last year my MIL made 4 of these for us. I love the red and black plaid that the bags are made of, but yours are such pretty ones. Bonnie, I use one every night during the cold months, and it never fails to bring a smile to my face when I get in bed and put my tootsies on it. Great tutorial. Joni

  8. What a good idea! And they're so pretty as well as useful -- love that.
    Your snowy header is so beautiful. I wish we got more (or any) of that lovely stuff here!