Are you the parent of a "power chewer"?
According to the "Lana Rush Dictionary", a power chewer is a child who gnaws on items, especially their clothes, to the point of utter destruction. A child who comes home from school with clothes that look like this:
Most chewable items available for power chewers can't withstand this type of aggressive chomping.
I've shared a couple times about Lily's tearing of clothes with her teeth and most of you know this is a behavior she engages in off and on from time to time. Click here and here in case you missed it.
Thankfully, at this current time, I'm beyond happy to report that Lily isn't chewing her clothes.
But since the last time went on for so long, I wracked my brains to try and come up with something that might satisfy her need to chew, stand up to her powerful bite, and not break our budget. And when I heard from a sweet friend that her son, a power chewer himself, told her that nothing else was quite as satisfying as fabric, I knew without a doubt that Lily felt the same way. She just couldn't tell me.
So, the fabric necklace was born.
Modeled after the popular Phiten necklaces you see so many athletes wearing these days, these fabric necklaces are much less expensive, are safe and washable, and give new life to all those hole-y t-shirts our power chewers have so many of.
I pitched the idea to the same sweet friend I mentioned above and she made a couple for her son to try out.
The verdict? He loves them!
Check out our handsome model:
It's been about 6 or so weeks now and the necklaces still satisfy his need to chew on fabric. He even requested a certain favorite shirt he could no longer wear be turned into a necklace. And his sister thinks they are super cool and asked that some be made for her as well.
Want to try making some yourself?
It's really very simple.
Take an old, clean t-shirt that your power chewer has destroyed. Cut 3 strips of material from the bottom of the shirt. Braid the strips together. The tighter the braid, the less chance of the fabric tearing. Secure in a small, tight knot. Tuck ends of the knot back into the braid. Put it around your kiddo's neck and let them chew away whenever the need arises.
If the necklace tears or comes unbraided or generally starts to look gross, just pitch it and make a new one.
How easy is that?
One more thing... if your son is a little leery of wearing "jewelry", just google "athletes wearing phiten necklaces" and show him some images. I bet he'll change his mind.
If you've got a power chewer, give the fabric necklace a try. And let me know how it goes. Good or bad, I'd love to hear about it.
Update - My sweet friend had an additional tip for making the necklaces that I wanted to pass along:
Just thought I'd share one suggestion that I found helpful while making them: I found that after cutting the strips, it was helpful to pull on each strip to stretch them out. That made the edges of the material sort of fold back on each other which was helpful. Plus, it seemed to make them just the right length to go over his head comfortably.