Friday 24 January 2014

LTTS Cover To Cover Challenge : Guest post

When you line up at the start of a mountain bike race you can see your competitors

You know who you're racing against. You know the other rider's strengths and weaknesses. And if you don't recognise them from other races you can check them out on the start line, what kind of bike are they riding, how fit do they look. The photo above is, I presume (memories fade), from a National round race as I'm conspicuously absent from the front line. Here I am, down the back somewhere, taking a much more relaxed approach to the line up.
Well, when you throw out a challenge on the internet you don't know who's going to line up and there's one "competitor" that's been an absolute stand out so far in our Cover to Cover Challenge. If sewing was an Olympic sport she'd be wearing gold for sure.

Before she gets too far in front and I lose sight of her, let me hand you over to Sharon of Sweetpea and Pumkins my first ever (trumpet fanfare) guest poster with her very cool big kid version of the Penguin Backpack..

Hello! I am Sharon from over at Sweetpea and Pumkins, I started The Little Things To sew challenge in the hope to make every project in this book. (After all I did tell my hubby that It would be a great investment seeing I was going to sew everything in this book...two years later)

So when Shelley started this challenge it was perfect for me to get in gear and finish all those projects I planned but had not started.

The challenge of this project was Mr. G needed a new book bag for school and it had to be big enough for all his things to fit inside and it had to be cool enough for an older kid.

For the mods of this, I first enlarged the front panel of the book bag by 2". (the other pieces I measured as I went) I then added a zipper pocket and cargo pocket on the front of it. The zipper was simply put in between the top/bottom panel of the front pieces. The cargo pocket was from the Oliver + S Field Trip pants but I made it 2" longer than the pattern piece. I also used hook and loop tape to keep it closed.

I sewed the lining of the front panel almost the entire way around to make this a working front pocket. I also stitched the top of the zipper panel to the lining panel to close the pocket off. Not hard at all it just some thinking. ; )

Yep, it's plenty big enough for all those books in the inside!

It also has a lining pocket (as in the pattern) on the inside for his pencils and small things.

I did try to make the book bag look the same as his old one on the back. The straps are padded as well so it's comfy to wear with all those heavy books inside.

I did reuse the adjusters from his old book bag onto the new one. They still are good and I didn't see why I shouldn't reuse them. (that and I couldn't find any at the store, all sold out! Who else would be buying these suckers this time of year??)

It did turn out pretty good but the best part is he loves it!

Thanks Shelley for having me and hosting this Challenge!

Thank you Sharon! How you can sew so much and respond to blogging requests is beyond me. I'm sure there must be 30 hours in every day in Sweetpea'n'Pumkin-land. The (very small) competitive part in me is waiting for you to hit the "technical" section of the race (that'd be the Travel Quilt and Playtown Houses) but I'm not sure it'll slow you up too much.

Thanks also to everyone who's sewing along at whatever speed they spin best at. The Flickr pool is looking fantastic. When I get back from my holidays I'm going to have to start an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of the projects completed. The list is getting sooooo long.


  1. Fantastic backpack - I have never been brave enough to make any 'real' kind of bag...

  2. The backpack looks fabulous! Perfect for an older boy. I love the camo!

  3. I am always overwhelmed by Sharon's productivity! She's a machine. I love the backpack.


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