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A "Draft Dodger" is a simple tube of fabric stuffed with other fabrics or materials. It is used to keep the outside cold air from sneaking into your home through the threshold of your doors and the sills of your windows. Easy to make. Fun to use!
- Measure the area where your Draft Dodger will be placed (along the bottom of a door, the inside ledge of the window, etc.). This will help you determine how much fabric you will need. The average amount is about 36" x 8" - about a quarter of a yard.
- Select fabric and thread. Select a fabric that's a little on the heavy side. Corduroy, denim, upholstery fabrics (one leg of a pair of denim jeans is just about perfect). Select thread that is compatible with the fabric weight and color you've chosen.
- Cut your fabric the same length as the inside of the bottom edge of your window (or along the bottom edge of your door), plus 1 1/4 inches to allow for a 5/8 inch seam X 6 to 8 inches wide.
- With the "right" sides of the fabric facing, fold the fabric length-wise and pin it together along the open edges, placing the pins about 4" apart. You now have a pinned, rectangular "tube" that is inside-out.
- On the sewing machine, sew one end and the long side of the tube closed, using a 5/8" seam. Do NOT sew both ends closed. Remove ALL pins.
- Turn the tube right-side-out. Begin at the closed end of the tube. Insert the handle end of a spoon or other blunt-ended tool (even a pencil will do) into the closed end. This can be a little tricky to get started. Working with your fingers, manipulate the tool through the full length of the tube until the spoon brings the closed end out the open end. Now you have an open-ended tube that is right-side out.
- Stuff the tube. Using a dowel, (broom handle, yardstick, etc.) fill the tube with chunks of stuffing; a little at a time. Push each "chunk" as far as it will go each time. Leave enough room at the open end to form a 5/8" seam. (TIP: When using pourable filling materials, like kitty litter or sand, use a funnel to pour into the Draft Dodger--leaving one inch unfilled at the top.)
- Close the tube. Carefully fold the raw edge of the open end of the tube towards the INSIDE of the tube to form a neat edge for hemming. Pin it closed. Using a needle and thread or on the sewing machine, stitch the end closed.
- Admire your work and place your Draft Dodger where it will serve its purpose! You'll be amazed at the difference it makes!
- This is a great project for beginning sewers.
- Turn this sewing project into a service project for a school or organization and donate the draft door stoppers to senior citizens or low-income families.
- Use your imagination to create a whimsical draft door stopper. Add ears and a face to create a cat or dog. With a piece of red ribbon for a tongue and two beads for eyes, you can create a snake.
- You can use a Draft Dodger along the vertical, opening edge of a sliding door, too. Make your Draft Dodger long enough to extend the full height of the door opening, add a weight at the bottom to keep it from flopping around, and suspend it on a tack or a small nail inserted at the top of the sliding door opening.
- An old pair of jeans can make a very durable draft door stopper. Cut the leg off as high as possible, stuff with filler and sew the ends closed.
- You will need a minimal amount of sewing experience to create this project. Always use caution when working with scissors, pins and the sewing machine.
Things You'll Need
- Stick pins
- Sewing machine
- Measuring tape
- Tightly-woven, sturdy fabric (about 1/4 of a yard)
- Spoon or other long-handled, blunt end tool
- Dowel, broomstick, yardstick or similar tool.
- Stuffing (Suggestions: cotton batting, cut-up old blankets or T-shirts/sweatshirts, sandbox sand, kitty litter, dry corn or beans or rice, or aquarium gravel.)
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