Posted by: rachelbarnes | September 6, 2008

a drawstring backpack project/repurpose an old suit

This project has been a long time coming for me.  I purchased some old suits from a thrift store six years ago (that’s right, six years ago) and I had not used the suits yet for a project.  Suiting material is a great way to reuse fabric.  The suits I purchased were from a local thrift store for around $2 for the pant and jacket suit set (cheap material too!).  Labor Day weekend was the kick in the pants I needed to start cutting up the suit fabric to use for this project.

I decided to make a little drawstring backpack. 

I used the idea, but I didn’t really follow the pattern (I enjoy sewing freestyle).  The book I referenced is one of my favorites that I own, Lotta Jansdotter’s Simple Sewing (I’m a sucker for Scandinavian influenced fabric, hats, IKEA!).  I love this book, very cute, simple ideas.  The one area in the pattern that I did follow was the dimensions of the straps, 4″ x 54″.

I was proud of myself for the fact that I didn’t rush through this project (like most projects I’ve done).  I get such joy out of the finished project, that sometimes I’m sloppy in my sewing just to get the project done.  This project took me about a week (working on it last weekend and here and there during the week).  This next picture shows a close up of the suiting material I used for the bottom front pocket of the bag.

This next picture shows the inside of the bag.  I used a pocket from one of the suit jackets for a pocket on the inside of the bag.  I also lined the bag with a soft, flannel material.  The remote was just a random item on the sewing table that I wanted to show off the pocket with.


Don’t you just love the feeling of a finished project?



  1. love it, you’re my kind of sewer!!!

  2. sweet!

  3. Awesome, Rachel! I like the color combo. A great idea to use old suits. And I LOVE Lotta Jansdotter too! I was just looking at her website yesterday, wanting to purchase one of the bags of scrap fabric. Alas, I don’t have the money this month.

    And I can see your lovely serging. I need one of those.

  4. Can I just say that I wish some of your thriftiness would rub off on me? I’m so jealous. And I didn’t even realize that you made the backpack you had with you yesterday…that’s how good it is!

  5. […] you already have (even with food items already in your pantry).   I followed this theme for my drawstring backpack project, all fabric I that already […]

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