DIY: Hot/Cold Rice Pack

What better way to break in the new Singer than a quick sewing project? My husband is a soccer player – in fact, he used to play pro in Brazil, but got injured and had to stop professionally – but that didn’t stop his love for the sport. He plays a couple times a week for some club teams here in LA… which really means he comes home with injuries all the time!

We are always going to the store to grab ice packs, heating pads, etc. and as if the expense wasn’t bad enough, they are all so ugly! And although, there are plenty of rice pack tutorials on Pinterest, I didn’t love the way any of them looked. So here is my first attempt at a sewing machine while trying to make it unique and quirky.

Materials Needed:

  • Fabric
  • Rice
  • Essential Oils
  • Funnel
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Needles / Machine Optional
  • Optional: Yarn

Step 1: Soak Rice in Essential Oils for 24-48 Hours


I actually soaked them in a ziplock bag – but the bowl was cuter for a picture. You can use any scent you want, but I picked Lavender for its soothing/calming effects. The rice/oil ratio really depends on how big your rice pack will be. I used about 1lb of rice, and about 10 drops of essential oil.

Make sure you are using therapeutic grade, 100% pure oils. I love Young Living or DoTerra but they can be pricey. I used Plant Guru for this one.

Step 2: Pick Your Material

Since I was going for more of a bohemian look, I used an old tank top that I ended up repurposing, but most fabrics work for this, so if you have something lying around the house – give it a shot!


This material had a pattern I loved and a texture that was very forgiving. There is no need for stiff edges or ironing, since it is very malleable. If you are going with a more traditional fabric, you will want to iron it before moving forward.

Step 3: Cut Fabric to Desired Size

The beautiful part about this project is its simplicity. You can make anything from hand warmers to body pillows! Pick the size that feels right for you.


Because I was cutting from a larger piece of material, I cut out a larger piece and simply folded it in half – this way I only needed to sew 3 sides instead of 4. My end product is about 6×4 inches.

Step 4: Sew It Up, Leave a Hole!

Make sure your fabric is inside out. You can’t tell with mine because it looks the same on both sides, but make sure that you have both sides ‘wrong side out’ when you are sewing them together. After the majority is sewn together, pull it right side out using the little hole you left!


Step 5: Pour In Your Rice!

I didn’t take a picture of this step because I was alone, and the rice can be a bit tricky. But its not hard. After you pull the fabric through your little hole, making it right side out, use a funnel to pour in your rice!

Like most steps in this project, the amount of rice is to your discretion. I filled up mine about 3/4 o the way. Go with your gut here!

Step 6: Cover the hole!

Now that your rice is in the bag, you can sew the little hole shut!


For most people, this is the end of the project. If you like the way your pack looks here – you are done! Congrats!

I wanted mine to be a little weirder, so I am going to add some colorful tassels 🙂


Step 7: Make Tassels

I actually learned how to make mine from this link which is just so simple and lovely.

Step 8: Attach Tassels

This was a little tricker than I anticipated, but I loved the way it turned out in the end! I ended up going over my end stitch line with a more embellished stitch to go with the colorful vibe of the tassels.

Step 9: Relax!

The beauty of this DIY is that when you are done, you can immediately benefit from its existence! I popped mine in the microwave for a minute and it started soothing my lower back right away!

What do you think?

Author: iamthecurioustexan

Queso gives me life. Wife to Daniel Danger & Dog Mom to Roxy. World traveller, avid crafter, wine snob, record collector, & board game winner.

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