raspberry rucksack

meet my raspberry rucksack! do you feel happy looking at it? i do. i think it has something to do with the bright yellow waxed canvas exterior, the dorky “bike to school” pin i found in my room from elementary school, and the fact that it’s like one of those prized fjallraven kanken backpacks, but it’s not!

this backpack was really fun to make and i was thoroughly excited the entire time. from ordering the waxed canvas and zippers online to picking up some hardware from joann’s (that i didn’t end up using) to buying the pattern (25% discount, yes please!! also, i’d been literally counting the days until it came out), cutting out the pieces, and finally sewing, it’s been a whole lot of fun. this backpack is essentially my birthday present to myself, and what better way to start off my 17th year with a bright, bold, cheerful, positive backpack! much like the values i aspire to incorporate into my life, i also can’t wait to start using this backpack on adventures around town and beyond.

now the question is, how did i manage to make such a big project while being in school, running track, playing soccer, and doing everything else i’ve got to do? baby steps, friends. break it up. i cut all the pieces one day, sew the pocket the next, then constructed, then added the bias tape binding. it’s a process, and that’s what i’m learning as i continue to make and sew things. i discovered that it’s super relaxing for me to turn on an audiobook (mother-daughter book club was my favorite in elementary school and i love listening to it because i pretty much have the dialogue memorized by now oops) and sew. my motivation for finishing my homework is to have time to do that, so i’m super focused at school, at lunch, and then i can come home and enjoy life a little bit more. i think it’s a good system.

a big thank you to my bestest friend L who left her homework and hiked up a hill to help take these pictures for me! you’re photography skills are phenomenal and i appreciate you coming along without much notice (many future impromptu photo sessions to come probably). 🙂

this backpack is super roomy and fits a lot which is amazing. i managed to fit multiple binders, textbooks, and pencil case in here in case i want to use it for schoolwork, but also a water bottle, sunscreen, books, journal, and jacket for other adventures. it’s made out of waxed canvas too, so it’s slightly waterproof, which is fantastic! now, can i fit a towel in here?

P A T T E R N:

  • sarah kirsten raspberry rucksack big raspberry
  • yellow waxed canvas exterior – fabric.com
  • neutral canvas lining – stash
  • 36 inch double pull zipper and 8 inch white metal zipper – zipit on etsy
  • webbing and hardware – making backpack hardware kit
  • double fold bias tape (like for making backpack) – joann’s

i followed the pattern directions exactly except i added a lined zip pocket (following a noodlehead tutorial) on the inside and a water bottle pocket on the back as well. i also finished the back straps differently because i didn’t have enough 1″ webbing, and it still worked out well. the zipper sizes on the materials sheet do not have to be followed. the pattern calls for you to finish the ends and cut the zippers to size anyway, so instead of 9 inch for the lined pop up pocket, i went for an 8 inch metal zipper. a 30 inch zipper will also work for the outside because you can always finish the ends with fabric instead, as a 36 inch zip is more expensive than a 30 inch one.

i want to add a water bottle pocket on the sides on the bag for the future, or just a slip pocket to put a phone in or something. i need to try and figure out how to make it elasticized though. also, binding the inside was a lot of fun and satisfyingly neat. i was scared of bias tape at first, but now i’m secretly crushing on it! also, i want my pocket zip and large zip to match next time too, but that’s just being picky. this wasn’t actually a difficult sew for me; i found the actual backpack construction with the corners to be more tricky than the pop up pocket. maybe it’s because i already made a making backpack and have that experience? i’m ready to make lots of this pattern in the future though 🙂

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