Thursday, August 18, 2011

The backpack factory.....

It's back to school time, and Thing 1 needed a new backpack. His old Spiderman backpack was looking worse for wear, and the zipper has given up the ghost. (Though it will still be good enough for use as a library book bag, so I do plan to replace the zipper and give it a new lease on life.....)

Despite knowing this, he asked after church two weeks ago if he could bring his Spiderman backpack to church the following week. When asked why, he told us that the Sunday School classes were taking donations of backpacks and other school supplies to distribute to underprivileged kids. Um, no, remember there's a reason why you're getting a new backpack??? But hey, I decided that charity should be encouraged, so we told Things 1&2 that they could pick out other fabric for extra backpacks to donate, and I would make them in time for us to shop for school supplies to fill them, and bring them to church on the appointed day.

Thing 1 picked the fabric on the right, which I've been jealously hoarding for a few years now, just waiting for a project worthy enough for it. And Thing 2 picked the fabric on the left, of which I have TONS. (I bought the rest of the bolt when it was on clearance for $1/yd at WM a few years ago, intending to use it for toddler bedding and such. Yeah, this was the first time I used it.)
As usual for my backpacks, I used Butterick 6735, view A, with my usual changes. As per the previous backpacks, I quilted the outer fabric to a layer of batting and added a separate lining. As per the last one, I used webbing for the strap fastenings, though this time I simply used adjustors instead of actual parachute buckles (trying to save $$ - but I have to say that those worked really well!) This time, I also used webbing for the hanging loop. I think it will give more security. Time will tell....I found webbing that looked really nice with the bug fabric backpack but was forced to just use black with the Matchbox backpack. Because I have so much of the Matchbox fabric, I used it as the lining as well. But the bug fabric is much more limited, and I'm still in love with it, so I used a red cotton leftover from my stash to line that backpack. Another change that was made based on last year was to make the zippers non-separating - a little kid with a separating zipper seemed to be a recipe for a broken zipper....sigh....

Once I finished the donation backpacks (Sunday morning before we left for church!), it was on to the backpacks for my little students. Thing 2 picked the Batman fabric on the left, and Thing 1 picked the shark camo fabric on the right. I made these the same way as the donations, except that I lined these in PUL - my first time trying this. We'll see how I like it. (I didn't have enough PUL leftover to line all four backpacks with it, and I was trying to only buy notions for my back-to-school sewing this year.)

Again, I used webbing and adjustors to make the straps, and I'm pretty happy with that. The Batman backpack has black webbing, and the shark has white. But I could only find the black adjustors, and I didn't start early enough to have time to order any. But that's okay! The boys are happy with their new backpacks.

And a closer look at the shark camo, which I really like. I have enough left for some shorts for at least one boy, I think....

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