Saturday, June 2, 2012

quick and easy seatbelt covers

The car seat we recently bought the kiddo (to replace the one in my car that tops out at a 40 lb. weight limit) included a couple of really handy little seatbelt covers. These are a definite bonus as his least favorite thing about riding in his car seats has been that the belts tend to cut into his neck when properly tightened.

He's been loving the new luxury seat. On the other hand, he's not been loving riding in my husband's car, whose seat does not have the accompanying seat belt covers. And on weekends and long road trips, that car is typically the one we travel in. It's been a little bit of an issue.

So okay; I decided I can either keep dressing the kiddo in hooded sweatshirts all summer (and pull the extra fabric up against his neck to protect it from the seatbelt) or I could just make a couple of seatbelt covers like the ones in the kiddo's other seat. Which is what I did.

Manufacturers typically recommend not adding accessories to car seats, but I felt this was an okay move for our family. After all, they also recommend against wearing excess clothing in a car seat, and the hooded sweatshirts were far more likely to interfere with car safety than two layers of thin cloth at one point on a seat belt. Also, because our other car seat had them as part of the stock package, I figured it was probably safer than other alternatives. You'll have to decide for yourself!

So, have I justified myself enough yet? :)

Here's what they'll end up looking like.

You can use any fabric for this project. I used pre-washed scraps of a cute gnome print by Michael Miller Fabrics, and some red felt. You'll also need thread and 3/4-inch sew-on hook-and-loop fastener (like velcro).

I also used the seatbelt covers from our other car seat as a pattern, but I took measurements for you: cut two pieces of patterned fabric and two pieces of felt measuring approximately 5.5 x 6.5 inches.

Round the corners, and stitch together one piece of felt and one piece of patterned fabric with right sides together. Leave about a quarter-inch seam allowance, and leave a couple of inches of one side open to turn inside out.

After turning inside out, press and top-stitch (stitch around the perimeter close to the edge) till it looks like this:

Cut four inches of hook-and-loop to fit along the long, straight sides.

Stitch the strips in place(right on the edge!), with the hook piece on one edge of the seat belt cover, and the loop piece on the other as pictured.

Trim loose threads and sharp corners of hook-and-loop. Fold in half. Complete!

Repeat for the second seat belt cover. Install in your car seat!

These take about twenty minutes, but you'll more than make up for any time spent the first time you ride in the car and no one feels like he's getting strangled in the back seat.

If you decide to make a set, I'd love to see how they turn out! Link in the comments below. Happy travels to you!

(p.s. you can make these pictures larger by clicking on them, but you probably already knew that!)

Linking up to:

mop it up mondays

The Stuff of Success

1 comment:

The Stuff of Success said...

Great idea! Thanks for linking to TheStuffofSuccess! Enjoy your week. Athena