Outdoor adventures can get a bit chilly this time of year so I thought why not make a little something that holds all your little one's adventuring supplies (or halloween candy) and keeps them warm at the same time! With one yard each of cotton sweatshirt material- black and red- two sets of D Rings, some furniture strapping and a bit of felt we have a backpack made for any little one who loves bugs... ladybugs!
This pack is great for dress up or All Hallows Eve, the treasures they collect can be stored in their backpack that also doubles as a great ladybug costume. The hood attached makes it a hoody backpack and adds to the costume giving extra warmth, leaving hands free for holding a light or lantern during the evening's adventures.
To start things off, the sack bag of the backpack is 16" X 12". I made a paper pattern first (pictured above), but you could just go straight to the fabric if you prefer.
Cut two pieces this size out of the black sweatshirt material and then fold them in half lengthwise. After folding, cut the edges off the bottom as seen in picture above rounding them off. Sew the two pieces together and hem the opening at the top.
Next you need to sew the hood onto the bag. To do this, cut another piece of black material 16" X 12" (the same size as the bag). Then hem the long sides of the rectangle. Next the hood is made by folding this piece in half lengthwise and inside out, then sewing the top of the rectangle. Then turn it right-side out. To attach it to the bag, open the hood so that it looks like a triangle (see bottom photo) and place the unfinished edge along the top of the bag (the side that lays directly on the back). It will be a bit wider than the bag, so you will need to make a small fold (or tuck) on either side of the hood so that it matches the width of the bag opening. Sew the hood to the bag. When it is done it will hang over the bag opening covering it up.
Moving on to the wings, begin by cutting a few more of the 16" X 12" rectangles, this time out of the red fabric. Cut four pieces this size, two for each wing. Fold each piece in half lengthwise and cut half a teardrop shape (a bit like what you would do when making a valentine heart, see photo above). Unfold and sew two of these pieces together. Repeat for the remaining two pieces of fabric. Before turning it to the right side out, cut out the bottom point as seen in the picture above to help keep the shape.
To attach the wings to the front side of the bag, first turn the bag inside out, once this is done sew the wings to the front side of the bag. To do this lay the wings onto the bag, have them just go over the half point of the width of the bag. To do that you will have to create a fold in the middle of the wing creating a small dart or fold/pleat. Then attach the second wing the same way. Sewing in the fold/dart will add some life to the wing.
When you turn the bag back to the right side the wings will fold over the outside edge of the bag hiding the seam and giving some lift to the wings.
I then used furniture strapping which I folded in half to make the straps, it is softer then you think and only 79 cents per yard, but substitute ribbon or whatever you have on hand. When I saw it I was thinking Christmas ribbon for wreaths this Christmas but for now it works great for the backpack straps. I attached the straps by sewing onto the back of the pack at the top about 3 inches in from each side, centering and adjusting to your own child's size. Finally I added D Rings for adjustability to the bottom and sewed on some spots made out of black felt, what ever size and how ever many, you would like to for the wings.
Once you do this, your Hoody Backpack is done and ready for All Hollows Eve, or any other adventure your little one can think up...
To free hands and warmth....
*Last time in Crafts and Imagination: Easy Bird Costume