Two years ago, I made O. a backpack for 4K. He picked out the fabric and piping, and I enlarged the made by RAE toddler backpack pattern and added some pockets to it. It was much loved, and held up better than I would have imagined, only getting a few tiny holes in the non-interfaced side bottle pockets near the end of last year.
When I told the boy that I was going to make him a new, bigger backpack, he was adamant that it be the very. same. fabric. However, it was nowhere to be found in quantities larger than a fat quarter. I happened to have another pirate map print in my stash which he deemed acceptable. I ripped apart a ready made backpack that had seen better days to use its padded back panel, bottom fabric and strap padding and constructed it in the same way as his other backpack.
I wanted this one to be more weather-resistant, so decided to try iron-on vinyl. I'm not entirely certain how I feel about it yet. It was easy to apply, but it's quite noisy -- crinkly sounding -- and not as sturdy feeling as I'd hoped. Which I would have known if I had taken the time to make a test project of some sort, but you know me. I was sewing up the bag the day before school started. If I were to use the vinyl again for a bag to be used daily, I'd probably add some interfacing as well. We'll see how it wears over the school year.
O. wanted a simple front pocket like on his other bag, and side bottle pockets. I used rip stop nylon for the box-pleated side pockets and for the straps.
Once it was done, it looked ridiculously gigantic, especially for a first grader, but when we got to school, most of the other kids' bags were just as humongous. The increased capacity has already come in handy, and I imagine we will appreciate it even more come snow pants season.