Summertime pleads for backpacks. I've been planning to attempt this project for some time, and I finally decided to conquer it once and for all. Here's what I did...
Supplies: Tote bag, quilting rope, paint, large hemp (optional).
Pantry Supplies: Scissors, paintbrush, masking tape, bobby pin.
Begin by cutting off one strap of the tote bag. On the side you cut off the strap, make a small slit on the outside layer of the rim. This will be to thread the drawstring. In order for the drawstring to reach the back of the backpack, you'll need to unstitch the remains of the strap you cut off. It will be a small square of canvas with an X sewn on top. Simply cut it off, and remove the stitching that attached it so that you can thread the drawstring through. This step sounds complicated, but once you're looking at the tote in person it will make much sense! To thread the drawstring, take a long piece of quilting rope, and wrap a piece of masking tape around it and a bobby pin through it. This will make threading it MUCH easier. While you're threading the drawstring, you'll come to the seam of the tote. Simply cut a small slit on each side of the inside of the rim and thread through, avoiding the seam altogether. Lastly, finish the drawstring by cutting a small slit right in front of the strap on the opposite side, pull it through, and tie a knot. Repeat this process on the opposite side, and tie knots at the ends so that the rope doesn't unravel. Now, it's time for the straps. Braid two long strips of rope and hemp, and knot at both ends. You'll attach both of them through one hole right in between the remaining strap in the back. Pull both sides through, and sew it securely on the outside of the bag. Attach the ends on bottom, opposite sides with the same process. Lastly, paint a beautiful design!
This project might seem a bit intimidating at first, but it's really a simple project with minimal sewing. I hope you try and tackle this project to create your very own backpack.
And on that note, I'm off to make a much needed mocha.