Moth and Toad Apothecary

Herbalism, self-sufficiency, and low-waste living

Prepping for Summer – Making Hand Fans and Neck Coolers

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Warmer weather is returning, at least here in Florida; more and more often, we’ve had full days without much of a drop past 80°F. While I’m enjoying the spring weather and longer days, I find myself worrying over the coming heat waves. I’ve decided to begin prepping for the sweltering summer heat by creating a few useful tools to help my family stay cool. Using simple cooling methods, I’m hoping to avoid the way I felt last year, and hopefully stay a little cooler. I’ve found a few DIYs online that I’d like to try, and several versions of each! I hope these handmade creations help you out, too!

Image by Vox Pedro on Pixabay

Hand Fans

I really don’t like battery operated fans; they’re very inefficient, made of plastic, and tend to go out at the worst times. Hand fans, however, are easy to store, travel with, and use. In Missouri, I carried around a lace fan when I was working, especially in the Summer. It was extremely useful and easy to carry. I’ve made a few fun fans in the past, and have gathered some tutorials as inspiration! I plan on upcycling some paper and other supplies to make some of these. I’ll probably make several to leave in my purse and around the house. Here are some links to get started:

Neck Cooler

This creation is both genius and easy to create. It uses water retaining crystals and a simple strip of fabric to effectively cool you down during hot weather. There are a few different patterns online, some of which I lined below, but they’re all very straightforward: sew a tube of fabric, add your crystals, and sew closures every few inches to keep them in place. Soak with water and store in the fridge until you need it, re-wetting it as needed! I’d like to make a cute version using a necklace attached to both ends, or maybe make a lanyard. There’s lots of room to explore with this simple evaporative cooler! I’m currently looking into buying some secondhand fabric to make some! I’ve seen lots of scraps/lots on Mercari (click to use my invite link when you sign up, and earn $10 off your first purchase) and facebook marketplace.

Note: I was worried the water crystals could potentially be unsafe, so I did some research and found this article! It put my mind at ease, so I wanted to share it with you, too! These crystals used to retain moisture in soil are what I am going to get.

Image and neck cooler by Beastbunny on Instructables

I hope these two DIYs will help me this summer! Let me know what you do to stay cool, and what seems to work best for you!

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