budapest adventure rucksack

by Cameron

If you ever get that feeling that you're not doing anything with your life, I suggest that you make a backpack. I recently made the Budapest Rucksack by Domestic Strata, and I feel entirely accomplished. I feel ready to take on all sorts of daunting projects like jeans or underwear. Or a spacesuit. The sky is the limit. I could take on any problem because I made a backpack. Honestly, I'm wouldn't be at all surprised if I were awarded an honorary degree by one or more elite institutions of higher learning because I made a backpack.

That's not to say that the Budapest Rucksack is a difficult pattern - actually, I think it's a great way to try out sewing more complicated bags. The pattern is written to use leather or Kraft-Tex, but we decided to use our water resistant canvas. It looks handsome in this dark, leathery brown and makes for a very sturdy bag. You do need to make some simple modifications to the pattern in order to hide the raw edges of the canvas - mainly folding under before stitching. In a couple of areas, the canvas got too thick to fold under, but because you're not going to be throwing it in the washing machine, a few dabs of Fray Check should be enough to keep your bag looking sharp.

The body of the bag is quilted, which is a look I love. We used a beautiful autumnal printed canvas from Art Gallery that's soft and a dream to quilt with. You could use a lighter weight fabric - a yarn-dyed Essex would make a timeless rucksack. The pattern includes instructions for piecing together the outside of the bag as well, which would be a great way to use up scraps.

It's a good size for traveling and day trips. It's big enough for the essentials and a few extras like a snack and a book, but not so big that you'll be tempted to bring the kitchen sink. There aren't any pockets, but it would be any easy modification to add some in the lining.

Long story short - this is a lovely bag, and good pattern for sewists who might like to cut their teeth on bag making. It's a shop sample, so check it out next time you're in the neighborhood!