Sunday, November 23, 2008

Tutorial: Simple Hot Water Bottle Cover #1

Last year, towards the end of winter, my trusty hot water bottle gave in and developed something of a fatal leak. I'm rather partial to a nice hot water bottle - especially for thawing icy toes or to soothe that tummy ache that won't go away.

Imagine my horror when I tried to shop for a new hot water bottle in NY and was met with many confused looks. To begin with asking for 'a hot water bottle' in my quiet English accent only confirmed (apparently) that I speak a foreign language - once I had entered into a detailed description of what a hot water bottle was - the shop assistants just led me to those air activated heat patches!

So during my recent trip back home to the UK my mother was very kind and gave me her spare hot water bottle. It turns out I'm quite fussy about hot water bottles (sorry Mummy!) I only like the traditional rubber sort. On an afternoon wander we popped into Superdrug ... where I found some small (1L) rubber hot water bottles ... I couldn't resist and purchased three thinking about the perfect stocking stuffers I would now be able to create.

So here is my first tutorial/idea of how to make a simple hot water bottle cover from a old felted sweater. The following instructions will work for either a full sized (2L) or small sized (1L) hot water bottle.

Simple Hot Water Bottle Cover #1
You will need:
- hot water bottle
- paper for pattern & pen for scribbles
- old felted sweater
- contrasting yarn
- needle, ruler, scissors etc
- button for decoration

1) Make your pattern first. Draw a line around your hot water bottle ...
... then mark another line 3/8" outside the original line. This will be your cutting line.
Measure the hot water bottle shape from the base of the bottle to the bottom the bottle neck. Then mark a line 1/4 down the bottle shape (line A) and another line 3/8 down the bottle shape (line B).
There are 3 pieces to this pattern - your bottle shape (piece C), the top of the bottle shape (piece A) and the bottom of the bottle shape (piece B).2. Cut these three pattern pieces out of your old sweater. If your sweater is patterned - consider this when cutting - especially if you want the pattern to line up.
3) Sew across the bottom of piece A and the top of piece B using a contrasting yarn in blanket stitch.
4) Begin to pin your pieces together. First pin piece B to piece C.
Then pin piece A to piece C.
Piece A should overlap piece B a little and this overlap will make a pillow case opening for your hot water bottle.
5. Sew around the entire bottle shape with the contrasting yarn in blanket stitch. If your sweater is patterned you might want to check that the pattern lines up before you begin to sew.Weave in any loose yarn ends.
6. Embelish your hot water bottle cover. I attached a bright red button and a loop of braided yarn - but you could use ribbon, pom poms, perhaps even applique a design at step 3. The options are endless.


Finally you will need to find a willing participant to test out your new hot water bottle cover - luckily Big Bunny was looking a little chilly and seemed quite happy to be today's model.

36 comments:

Rachel said...

Fab tutorial Rachael! I do like a traditional hot water bottle myself as well - fancy them not having them in the States!! Big Bunny looks very cozy all cuddled up with it. :)

two hippos said...

Fab hottie cover, great tutorial! We spent a week in Rome just before Christmas a few years ago and the apartment we were staying in was so cold we went and bought quite a few!

dottycookie said...

I'd be lost without my hottie! - or at least my husband would, as he'd end up with my cold feet on his back without it ;-)

driftwood said...

fab tutorial, bunny looks so cosy, now where is my hot water bottle, it could do with a nice new cover, but there's no chance of it getting a felted jumper - I bought a beautiful red jumper at a thrift store, felted in, and left it on the table, came back to find one very happy cat fast asleep and so pleased with the new bed he had found.......

periwinkle said...

What a fab tutorial - looks pretty easy too. I was thinking about getting a hottie for Milo but don't like the look of the rubber - I suppose I could do this with an old blankie of his too - ooh now you've set me off :-)
Lisa x

Rolande (Israel) said...

Very good idea!
I will adopt it :0)
Thanks,

kiddlebug said...

I have been wanting to make a cover for my hot water bottle! The other day I had lines on my back where I was laying against it.

Brenda said...

Hi, I've just found your blog, thanks to Flickr. I love hot water bottles, so cosy.
I will be having a go at one of these covers, thanks so much for sharing a tutorial on this. I have plenty of time, it's nearly summer in Australia :)

LizzieJane said...

I love hot water bottles, thanks for the great tutorial Rachael, my little tootsies will stay warm this winter!
x

Jenny said...

I love water bottles! They take me back to being a little girl. Only mine were wrapped in an old towel! I wish you had been my mum! Hee hee! Jen

Simone said...

Thanks for a great tutorial! It is pretty chilly around here right now so I could do with a hot water bottle. I really like the fact that the cover all hand sewn. What a great idea! I love the big bunny too!

Corrie said...

yes I made one of these earlier in the year and love it! I used a turtleneck which just goes over the top of the bottle! l-o-v-e your stripes though!

Corrie;)

Things Hand Made said...

I have sick children at the moment and I could just do with one of those!

Dyan said...

Thanks for sharing this. I have a bottle just waiting to be covered.
Dy

Dianne said...

What a superb idea! Thanks for sharing!

Leanne said...

Thanks for sharing...i don't think you can buy hot water bottle anymore here in Australia.

Ladybird World Mother said...

I think, I really think, that I might actually have a go at this!!! Will be the first thing I have made for very very long time as have Very Little Skill. But looks so nice and we use hot water bottles all the time. Love the way those guys couldnt work out what you wanted!!
Glad I stopped by. Will let you know how I get on!

hetty said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I saw a covered hot water bottle at Chapters yesterday. Glad I didn't buy one. Now I can make my own.

Hello Pineapples! said...

Great tutorial! I really like how you have it made with a flap in the middle of the cover. I have a sheep hot water bottle cover (for a now broken hot water bottle) that is super cute, but a pain to get the bottle in and out of the cover.

Kat said...

Thank you for this tutorial! My hot water bottle cover was recently shredded in the wash, and it is absolutely impossible to find a new cover in Wisconsin (but you already knew that from your NY experience ;) ). I can't wait to make a new cover so I can stop using the pillow case my bottle is currently in!

Liane said...

I'll have to try this one! Do you just put hot water in these things? Can they be used with ice as well? (American, can you tell)

Lettie said...

Would love to try, but how do i get/make a felted jumper? Do i have to hot wash and old jumper or something?

Amy said...

My mother-in-law discovered the wonders of the hot water bottle (vs an electric heating pad) while visiting us in Australia. I want to make her a cover for the one she bought and your instructions/pattern are *exactly* what I was looking for. (The flap over the top of bottle as opposed to tying it closed around the neck.)

Thank you!!!

Alice said...

Thanks for going to the trouble of making this tutorial! I grew up in NYC and we always had a hot water bottle. Even now, despite my MD, I can't think of a better treatment for stomach cramps. It is hard to find them in the US--they are always on the bottom shelf under the heating pads....
Guess what everyone's getting for Christmas this year!

von Hand zu Hand said...

thanks for this great tutorial.
good to have such a colorful hot-water bottle cozy.

i set a link. i hope you'll agree.

many greetings, doro.

Anonymous said...

Hot water bottles are available here in "The Colonies," but the best ones are British and ordered from Vermont Country Store or German, non-latex, and ordered through Amazon.com. If needed in a hurry, you can try a local, non-chain drug store and medical supply store, but the quality will not be as good and it will probably come with all sorts of tubes and clips for enemas and other uses other than cold feet and grumbly tummies. I have a great pattern for a sheep cover, which you could make up by using the felted pattern for size and shape, using a false fleece fabric and adding a lightly stuffed head with felt ears and feet and embroidered features. Similar adjustments could produce a bear or other cuddly animal for a sick child's use.

Sohiliya said...

I love Hot water bottles! it is great pattern for a nice sleep cover,it is necessary for every personal.

joexmann said...

everyone in my family has a hot water bottle so i decided to make personalized covers for christmas presents. went to walgreens and they carry water bottles, but it was in a box (instead of just sitting on a shelf in a bag). also it seemed pretty expensive, about $15. walmart carries them too.

Ayurveda said...

nice posting.Hot water bottle

Maria said...

hi,
nice Tutorial for hot water bottle.It is a great way to nice sleep cover,it is very necessary for every persons.Hot water bottle

Jess said...

Wow that is an absolutely inspired water bottle design! Very personal and positive design for a good nights sleep :)

Susan said...

Perfect! Just what I was looking for. Thank you

Sarah said...

My daughter and I just made it!! Looks great. We are so proud of ourselves. Thanks for the tutorial.

Kathryn F said...

As someone who traveks between the UK and the USA, I am very aware of the difference in hot water bottles/ hot water bottle usage. I learned to love HWBs in the UK and now never sleep without one, no matter where I am. You can buy HWBs with covers in the UK, but most of them are ugly. I look forward to making up this very simple pattern. Thanks so much for posting it.

Chaos, Kids, Crochet and Cake said...

Great tutorial! I've been buying up old woollen blankets from the "Salvos" and now I know what to do with the tatty ones! Thank you!
Sandra x

artsywanderer said...

This is great!

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