Of all the things we did with Gavin, the thing that gets asked about, commented on and complimented the most is his homemade chest strap. I wanted something to hold Gavin upright since he had such low tone. It started with me wanting him to sit in a chair at our art table. I told my Mom what I wanted - and she created this chest strap! You can see it wrapped around his chest in this photo of him... at our art table! It worked perfectly.
And it allowed him to sit in a chair two years in a row as we would (attempt to) make our Gingerbread house with Granny!
As Gavin got stronger, we got braver! The strap was actually what held him onto the "famous" Fire Truck at Gillian's Wonderland Pier in Ocean City, NJ.
That chest strap made that experience... and so many more... possible for Gavin. We will always be so grateful to my Mom for making it for him!
Tonight I will give you the instructions from Granny so you can make your own strap! I hope we explain it well!! If you end up making a strap (or having one made!), I would LOVE it if you would send me a photo and let me know how it's helping the child in your life!!
Step one: Pick out the cutest fabric in the store. You will also need thin batting - about 1/4 inch wide or so and velcro strips.
Step two: Cut two strips - add half an inch on all ends for seam. The length you need will depend on the person you're making it for, but this one that was Gavin's was 37 1/2 inches long and 4 9/16 inches wide - completely sewn.
Step three: Sew the right sides together (the sides you eventually want to be seen on top) all the way around with batting on one side. Leave about six inches on one of the long sides open so you can turn it inside out to get the right sides visible.
Step four: Hand sew the opening together
Step five: Sew the velcro strips on opposite ends/opposite sides - so that when you wrap it around the child, it will fasten together.
The velcro on Gavin's strap was two inches wide... and was cut in 12 inch long strips.
That should do it!
They are really easy to make. Especially if you have a talented mother like I do that will make it for you! Then it's SUPER-easy!!! *smile*
Most importantly, it will open up new opportunities and maybe even give a little bit of independence to the child in your life. This simple strap did all that and more for Gavin... which is why I'm so happy to share the "how to" with all of you. And, just as important - it helped Brian, too. It allowed Gavin to have wonderfully fun experiences with his little brother that wouldn't have happened otherwise...
...memories that Brian will never forget.