My son can sit in the van without a car seat. Just with a seat belt. But the seat belt rubbed his neck. He gets very red and sometimes even gets scratches. He is not able to adjust it. We bought him a regular store bought seat belt cover. It has been pretty much useless. Because it is so small, it moves around, going behind his head or down to his tummy. Because he has cerebral palsy, he isn't physically able to put it back in place and keep it there. So I sat down and made him a new one! These will work great for both special needs or not!
They are very easy to make. First you will need to sit in the vehicle with the seat belt on. Measure from just at/above the buckle, up and across your body, following the seat belt. Stop about half way between your neck and where the top of your seat belt threads through above your shoulder. You don't want it to go all the way up to that area, as it may interfere with it's locking/catching if you were to get in a wreck (I have no clue if it would interfere, but better safe than sorry, right?) This is your length. My son's length was 24 inches (he is small, a large adult would need a couple more inches) PLUS seam allowances- I use 3/8 inch seam allowances so my total length was 24 3/4 inches.
Your width will be 8 inches wide + seam allowances. (I use 3/8 inch seam allowances so my width is 8 3/4 inches)
You will need:
- An outer fabric that will be seen. (I used a basic quilt type cotton woven)
- A coordinating or contrasting fabric for the opposite site. (I used a basic quilt type cotton woven)
- Fleece or batting for the middle layer(s) (I used 2 layers of fleece)
- 1.5 inch wide sew on Velcro or Aplix (Do not use 2 inch Velco! cut it if that's all you can find)
1-Cut all 3 fabrics 8.75 inches wide AND 24.75 inches long. (or whatever length you measured)
2-Layer your fabrics in this order: outer fabric (right side UP), coordinating fabric (right side DOWN), fleece, fleece.
3-Pin all layers together well.
4-Baste together both long sides and one short side. (This will shift a LOT so, take your time and pin well)
5-On the other short side, baste only 1 inch on either side, leaving an opening to turn the cover.
6-Using a regular sewing stitch, sew your cover together in the same manner that you basted.
7-If you have a serger, serge together (except for your open area for turning) If you don't have a serger, just use a zig zag or over edge stitch on your sewing machine.
8-Turn your cover right side out through the area you left open. Be sure to push out all corners.
9-Fold the edges of your opening under, iron, pin, and sew the opening closed using a straight stictch near the edge.
10-Press the cover and try to get every thing nice and smooth.
11-Using a water soluble pen draw a line down the middle of the length (on the front).
Now measure and mark a line 1 and 1/8 inches on both sides of that line. (You will now have 3 lines in the middle of your cover running the entire length)
12-Forget that middle line! Sew through all layers ON the other 2 lines. Use a regular straight stitch.
13-Pull the edges back tight (so you don't have puffy edges), press and pin.
14-Cut Velcro the same length as your cover minus 1/2 inch. (I cut mine 23.5 inches long)
15-Place hard Velcro(hook) on the edge of the outer/top fabric (decorative fabric) Use glue stick to place your Velcro, add pins if needed. Sew around Velcro, using white thread. Be sure to match your bobbin color to the fabric- I used black)
16-Place soft(loop) Velcro on the opposite edge of the back/under side (black fabric) Use glue stick to place your Velcro, add pins if needed. Sew around Velcro, using white thread. Be sure to match your bobbin color to the fabric- I used black)
17-Fold around seat belt. Enjoy!
And here is a comparison of the sizes. My extra long seat belt cover v/s the store bought version.