DIY backpack

Lately we’ve been getting ready for school.  There’s the school supplies that each kid need, lunch boxes, snacks, and backpacks.  I try to use things that we have for as long as possible.  Last year we didn’t buy any new backpacks we just shuffled them around.  They were still in good condition and so could be used another year.  We’re doing the same thing just a little differently.

Last year Benjamin kept his old backpack and Joseph used Benjamin’s old one that he got for Christmas one year from his Aunt Rachel.  It was Transformers so still very cool in a little boy’s eyes.  This year we had to throw away the Transformers bag because of the many holes in the bottom.  I guess after using it for two boys and three years it had earned some down time.  Joseph will now be using Benjamin’s old bag (which is new to him) and Benjamin got to shop for a new bag.  Emma needed a new bag but we picked up a beautiful new purple bag from the clothing swap our ward had a couple of weeks ago.  Conveniently her favorite color is purple and she couldn’t be more pleased.  That leaves Jacob.  Last year, when he first started Early Childhood and he was barely 3 and so very small.  I picked up a couple really cheap bags that were on the smaller side so that he wouldn’t be overwhelmed by the size and weight.  They were large enough to fit a folder and a pencil box but not much more.  Luckily that’s all he needs.  By the end of last year his bag was trashed.  It wasn’t because he intentionally destroyed it but after going on the bus, carrying it around (sometimes dragging it) what could you expect from a 3-year-old.  We tossed his old bag at the end of the school year but I had the extra black and grey one for this year.

I have every intention of having him use that bag for this school year.  It’s new, clean, and the perfect size for a 3 1/2-year-old.  I couldn’t help but feel a little bad that it’s such a boring bag especially when we’re shopping at Sam’s Club and he comes across these adorable bags!


He wore the green doggy the entire time that we were shopping and was heartbroken when we didn’t buy it.  I knew we didn’t need to spend the money on it especially when we have something that works perfectly.  It was just that it was so cute and the one we had is not!  He’s a cute little preschooler and should have something cute for his school year.  That’s when I decided to do something about it.

I went home and, after the kids were asleep, I pulled out my paints.  I sketched a Batman image onto some plain white paper and then cut it out.  I used that as a stencil and traced the image onto his backpack.  Once I had everything layed out I pulled out the black puffy paint and started filling in the black part of the image.  Once that was done I pulled out the yellow and went to work on that part.  I let it dry up above the fridge overnight.  I didn’t want one of the kids to see it in the morning before I could check and make sure it was dry.  It took some time but I was so determined for him to fall in LOVE with his backpack that I didn’t mind.

The next morning I couldn’t separate Jacob from his bag!  He ate lunch with it on and ran all over the house talking about school and occasionally playing the role of Batman 🙂 .


To me this was a huge success!  I loved the fact that I could take materials that I already had and create something that my child loves and can’t get enough of.  Doing things like this not only helps me to save money but also helps us to realise the wonderful things that we already have but that we might have just lost a little love for.

And with that, we are all ready for school next week!


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Filed under Craft Projects, Jacob, Kids, School

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