Saturday, October 22, 2011

Removable (Machine Washable) Draft Blocker: Tutorial

So for several years I have been using old towels or blankets as a blocker for the bottom of my little man's door.  It is a good way to keep out light, extra sound, and even a draft. 
But the towel/blanket thing always looked so unkempt.  I tried those draft blockers that go under the door but it just did not work very well.  I've been meaning to make my own for awhile and I finally have.  This design works great because it blocks well but is also easily removed and washed right in the washer. 

  • 3" thick x 8" wide x 14" tall piece of Foam OR 3" x 14" x 14" Foam (depending on what you can find)
  • 15" x width of door frame + 8" piece of fabric
  • Separating zipper measuring about 2" smaller than the width of your door frame.  You do not have to use a separating zipper, but it makes it a little easier.

This type of cushion is what I used and you can find them in a variety of sizes
at most local craft/hobby stores.

1.  Measure the inside of your door frame from edge to edge where the draft blocker will sit.  Mine was 
28 1/2".  
2.  I wanted by draft blocker to be nice and thick, able to block light & muffle sound.  4" seemed like a nice thickness.  So first I measured 4" in from the edge and drew a line. 
You can't see the line very well here.  So I circled it, but you would be able to
see your own, it was quite clear in person.  The photo just didn't catch it.
3.  Cut on the line. 
4.  Measure 4" in from the cut line and cut another piece.   These two pieces together will measure 28" which is very close to my 28 1/2" door frame.  If your door frame is wider then 28 1/2" just cut additional pieces of
foam to create a long enough to fit across the entire door frame. 
5.  My piece of fabric measured 15" x 36" (28" of foam + 8").  If your foam is thicker than 3" or wider than 4" you will need to use a different measurement than 15".  Add all thickness and width together and then add 1" to get the correct measurement.  

My foam was 3" thick and I cut it 4" wide.  3" + 3" + 4" + 4" = 14" + the 1" = 15"

6.  Fold fabric in half along the side that is the width of the door frame, wrong sides together.  Mark the center line.
7.  Fold the zipper in half and mark the center line on both edges and both sides.   
8.  You can separate the zipper to make it easier to sew in.  Line up the half way zipper line with the half way fabric line.  Pin or place zipper (using wash away wonder tape), wrong side down along the edge of fabric.  Sew in place. 
9.  Repeat step 8 with the opposite side of fabric and other side of zipper. 
10.  Fold zipper under fabric and top stitch next to the  zipper. 
11.  When you re-zipper the edges you should have a tube.  Zipper edges so that fabric is right sides together.  Pin the open edges (fabric between the end of the zipper and the end of the fabric) together and sew with a 5/8" seam allowance, only from the edge of zipper to the edge of the fabric. 
12.  Turn fabric right side out.  
13.   Place the foam inside the fabric so that the 3" edge is on the floor and the foam is sitting up 4" from the ground.  Keep the zipper so that it is along the center of the top of the foam.
14. Zip it closed. 
15.  Turn the whole thing down so that the zipper is on the side and the 4" edge is against the ground.
16.  Go to one of the open edges.  We are basically going to work with the fabric just like we were going to wrap a present or make an envelope (this method works well for creating a very square "wrapper" and it is quick).  Fold down the top of the fabric to meet the fabric on the floor. 
17.  Pull over one side on top of the folded fabric just like an envelope.
18.  Repeat with the opposite side. 
19.  Then pull up the bottom fabric, which is now shaped like a triangle. 
20.  Hand stitch the triangle tip to the fabric that lies on top of the foam. 
21.  Continue to whip stitch edges of the fabric to the fabric behind it, until all edges are sewn shut. 
22.  Repeat steps 16 - 21 with the opposite open edge. 
23.  Now you are all set! Place the draft blocker in your door.   


Anonymous said...

Thanks for this tutorial! I've thought about doing something like this but wasn't sure how to go about doing it. Now I have an idea how to do it, especially with winter right around the corner.


Lindsay Conner said...

I've featured your tutorial today at Great job!

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