Textile Therapy


  • Scraps of different purple-toned patterned fabric
  • Mauve linen or cotton fabric
  • Dark purple corduroy
  • Dark purple cotton fabric
  • Purple thread
  • 1.5 - 2kg dry (uncooked) rice
  • Dried lavender

Finished Size

23 x 39cm

Skill Level


Where to Buy

Ask your local florist for dried lavender. It's often available to order, even if they don't generally stock it.

You can download a copy of the original magazine pages for this project here, Textile Therapy

Whatever minor ailments you may suffer, this heatcool pad, infused with your favourite scents, can ease away your aches and pains. Apply to the affected area, grab a mag, put your feet up and sip a cup of tea

  1. Cut four 8 x 15cm rectangles from contrasting patterned fabrics.
  2. Take two of the rectangles and, with right sides facing, pin then stitch the long edges together. Sew a third rectangle below the second one in the same way and then a fourth. Press all seams flat.
  3. Cut a 10 x 23cm rectangle of mauve fabric and one 20 x 23cm rectangle from the dark purple cord.
  4. Pin the long edge of the mauve piece to the left-hand edge of your patched strip with right-sides facing. Stitch in place.
  5. Sew the dark purple rectangle to the right-hand edge of the patched strip and then press seams.
  6. To make the back, cut a piece of plain dark purple fabric, 23 x 39cm. With right-sides facing pin the back and front pieces together. Stitch along your pinned seams, leaving a 7cm gap at one of the short sides.
  7. Turn the fabric right-side out through the gap and press.
  8. Mix the rice and dried lavender in a bowl. Push the small end of the funnel through the gap in your fabric, and pour the mixture through it.
  9. When you're happy with the way your pad looks and feels, take the funnel out and slipstitch the gap in the seam closed.

EASY TIPS - Don't fill the pad to the brim - allow for some movement to bend around those aching joints. When heating, a cup of water in the microwave will prevent burning.


If lavender is not your favourite fragrance, try other dried flowers or spices for a different scent. Dried rose petals work well, or try cinnamon sticks for a delicious, wintery smell. Think about adapting the colours of your pad to go with the fragrance, too - soft pinks and greens for rose petals, spicy oranges, reds and brown to go with the cinnamon. You could also use a few drops of soothing essential oils, or simply have an un-scented pad.

How to use


Heated, the pad is great for easing stomach ache or back ache, de-frosting chilly feet or just as a general winter warmer. Put it in a microwave for 2-3 minutes to warm through.


Leave the pad in your fridge or pop in the freezer for an hour, then use it to soothe headaches, minor injuries or sprains, and aching, shop-tired feet.

Figure 1

First published in Popular Patchwork Weekend Projects