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AFBAmerican Foundation®
for the Blind

Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss

Braille Pattern Pillowcases and Bedsheets

Hi All,

First Question:
- Any suggestions or references on effective Braille knots for durability in the laundry? String types, fabrics, knot styles?

Some background:
I'm hearing and learning Braille. I love all sorts of diverse communications tools including Morse, foreign languages, ASL, etc. I would also like to teach Braille to any kids, hearing or not, that I might have.

Thinking about how I would teach a young kid Braille, I figured I might want to try filling the tactile environment with Braille from a young age. Walls can be easily covered with regular printed or laminated embossed paper. For floors, I could use Legos or 3d-printed material.

Clothing and bedding, though, is a little more difficult. It's also likely more important at the infant level as hard flooring needs avoided sometimes, and there's minimal wall-contact-time.

I looked up Braille machine-embroidering and it looks like the tech is still slow to develop.

There's some good new tech, but still very expensive. However, it seems that the hand-embroidered french knots work pretty well. I suspect some on this forum may have a better sense than I do about how to do the french knots, and how they last through the laundry.

Second question:
- Anyone interested in pillowcases or sheets covered with this kind of Braille? Perhaps a large order could be made from an embroiderer in a low-income country...

Steven Bhardwaj

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Re: Braille Pattern Pillowcases and Bedsheets

I can honestly say that I have never heard of this method of teaching braille, but it seems really fascinating. I don't know about knots or materials, but I do know that blankets would be a good place to start. You could use durable iron-ons or fabric paint in excess to make dots. You could also use puffy-paint which hardens into textured material too. I don't know if you could wash it though. As a side note, consider using more books, games, or toys to teach braille in addition as these are more commonly touched by children than walls. There are also things like dolls that have braille on them too. I have used many of these things and they have helped me to become the proficient braille reader that I am. Also, not to sound snotty, but you are teaching braille to vlind/vi children right? Typically hearing impaired kids do not learn braille, however it definitely wouldn't hurt. I hope that this helped even a little bit. I hope you have a great holiday!

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