Show Off Saturday: I made a Day Off Backpack!


Earlier this month my friend Virginia Lindsay from Gingercake offered me a copy of her new Day Off Back Pack pattern to try and I couldn’t wait to get started! The original plan was to make a back to school backpack for my daughter Chloe, but it turned out so beautiful that I think I might have to steal it from her – or at least find an excuse to borrow it once in a while.

The Day Off Backpack Pattern includes two different size options (grown up and kid sizes), each with different details. What I loved most about this pattern is that I could create my own ‘mash-up’ version, mixing the details that I love from each one.


For instance, I took the pleated sides, boxy base, and rectangular flap from the kid version…

And I kept the features that I loved about the ‘grownup’ version, including the front zipper pocket, the magnetic snap, and the larger size of course.

I was in such a hurry to get started that I made this backpack entirely from ‘stash’… without a single trip to the store! The base is some thick upholstery vinyl, so it didn’t require the batting that she suggests. For the exterior fabrics I dipped into my Cotton + Steel fat quarter collection. These are some of the cotton linen blends, they are so amazing to work with.

I threaded one of my sewing machines with some cream colored 30 wt topstitching thread and the other one with regular weight navy thread for the seams. Then I bounced back and forth in between sewing seams and topstitching. I totally recommend this trick if you have two sewing machines. Both machines took a heavy duty denim needle for these thick fabrics.

Then, since I was ‘sewing from stash’ I made my own adjustable straps with 3 D-rings on each strap instead of 1 D-ring and a triglide slide. Yay!

Thanks so much Virginia, for the chance to try out your new pattern! Anyone else interested in making a Day Off Back Pack can find the pattern here.

So, what have you been sewing up this week? Did you make something with one of my free sewing tutorials or patterns? I would love to see! Tag me on Instagram @sewcanshe.

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Happy Sewing!


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  1. I know the feeling, making something for someone else, but so pleased with the result that it is hard to give away. I give it away and think I made another for myself. But I never do. It would be difficult for me to give this bag away to. Great pattern, but you made the beauty!!!!

  2. I really like your take on the bag here. Colors are just perfect, but especially since it just happened out of your stash. I agree with your pieces and parts approach about adapting patterns to make them fit what you would like yourself. Isn’t that why we all sew? Customized personal items are fabulous!

  3. Beautiful bag – and really smart to put a thicker fabric on the bottom. I made a tote bag for my son and didn’t take into account the extra abuse the bottom of the bag goes through…already starting to show. My link this week is more of a "future show-off" – I have a few patterns that I’m hoping to get some extra sets of eyes on before they’re showcased!

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