Just finished two sets of seat belt covers. I’ve been meaning to make myself a new set. The impetus was a request from a friend who has a pacemaker and finds the seat belts in his car uncomfortable. I made him a set shortly after he’d had the pacemaker implanted. They’ve worn out. So I’d put a note on my calendar to make him a new set today. I made a set for myself as well.
Materials for one seat belt cover: a piece of fabric 24″ x 7.5″, a double cut of batting 11″ x 6″, 1 piece of hooks velcro 3/8″ x 10.5″, one piece of loops velcro 3/8″ x 10.5″.
Construction: I lay the batting in the middle of the fabric, fold down one long end over the batting, fold up the second long end to overlap the first (I try to use the selvage on one end – that means I don’t have to worry about folding under or fraying – if you don’t have a selvage, fold under the raw edge of the top fabric before stitching). Stitch close to the edge, then a second row of stitching 3/16″ away from the first. Next press the seat belt cover, turn in the side edges (folding in the end corners), press. Finally, careful lay one of the velcro pieces along the folded edge (over the folded-in fabric), stitch as close to the velcro edge as you can, then along the inner edge of the velcro. Add the second strip of velcro to the other side making sure both pieces of velcro are on the same side of the cover. Fold seat belt cover in half using velcro to close it. The cover will just slip over the seat belt – I use them with the folded edge to my neck, open/velcro edge away from me.
They’re great for short people who find seat belts uncomfortable, particularly in the summer when I’m not wearing a heavy coat. I still use them during the winter as well. Just convenient to have them in the car. I also have one on the passenger side. They’re particularly useful for children using booster seats who also find seat belts cut their necks.
My original pair came as a gift from Hawaii at least 30 years ago. I’ve continued making them as gifts and for myself ever since. The fabric doesn’t have to colourful, a closely woven batik works well – batik has quite a bit of body which makes the seat belt cover a bit stiffer and the fabric doesn’t wear as quickly as a softer cotton.