Feb 28, 2013 at 3:19 am #1299799
I'm thinking about making a sleeping bag/quilt for our daughter (currently 9months old). I would like to pattern it after one made by Tim Marshall for forum member Doug Johnson. What I'm thinking is a simple rectangular "quilt" with a drawstring closure for the footbox and a zipper to bring both edges of the quilt together (from foot to head). I would also like to include one or two more drawstring closures at 6-8" intervals so the bag will "grow" with her. I was thinking of using 1.1oz ripstop and 5oz Apex. However, I am at a loss as to how I should install the zipper. Should I just make the rectangular quilt (pillowcase style) and then sew the zipper like on cheap fleece bags? Or is there an easy way to see the zipper as I do the pillowcase method so no zipper tape will show when all is finished? I'm fairly new to sewing and haven't tried zippers yet.
Here's a link to the custom bag I would like to emulate:
>>>Just posted an update on how it has worked so far further down the page…Feb 28, 2013 at 6:02 am #1959619
Liner fabric on one side of zipper tape, outside fabric on other side of zipper tape.
You could sew liner/insulation/outside fabric together leaving about 1 inch of fabric with raw edge, on both sides, to make sure the insulation is captured around the egde. Then go back and fold over the edge of the liner/outside around the zipper tape and sew it.
Maybe some pins or hand stitches would make it easier.Feb 28, 2013 at 6:41 am #1959629
If you are making a bag or quilt, you might also want to consider purchasing this amazing article on measuring insulation by Jerry Adams (with help from Roger Caffin). I somehow missed this article when it came out and only came across it yesterday. Great example of the kind of detailed info some BPL articles provide. Insulation MeasurementFeb 28, 2013 at 6:50 am #1959633
thanks : )
I've got another one in the queue when Ryan publishes itFeb 28, 2013 at 7:55 am #1959654
Here are some pics of the little bag my wife and I made for our little boy. It is using 1.1 ripstop and down. It is basically a traditional mummy bag due to the fact that our boy kicks and wiggles like crazy when he sleeps so he would have a quilt on the other side of the tent in a heart beat. I was worried about a mummy bag at first because I figured he would squirm and end up lost inside. So far so good on the times I have put him in it to test. We are yet to take him backpacking as it is way to cold here in the winter. Anyhow, good luck and enjoy. This is the best part of backpacking, when you get to take your kids.Mar 1, 2013 at 12:00 am #1960021
Your ideas really got me thinking… So now I think I have a plan… Roll the hem and catch the batting with the the top side fabric (light blue) and then sew the outside and inside together, with the zipper half on each edge… maybe this drawing will help describe the idea…
this would be like looking at a cross section of the bag from the bottom… the black is the zipper, the dark grey is the inside of the bag and the red would be the stitching.
is this doable? or will i be pulling my hair out. I know with "regular" fabrics (like flannel), this is fairly easy to fold and pin a hem, but will it even be possible with 1.1oz ripstop?
Then do a rolled hem on top and bottom of bag with a drawcord channel at each end.
On the right track? or should i be trying something else?
I would think a draft tube could increase the warmth a little bit… would it be worth it?Mar 1, 2013 at 7:24 am #1960073
I had no problems sewing th ripstop. I think your idea looks great as long as you measure everything right. I have never done a synthetic quilt though s I am not sure how hard the batting is t work with.Mar 1, 2013 at 7:39 am #1960077
I think it doesn't work so good to have a row of stitches go through fabric/insulation/zipper tape/fabric. The distance from the row of stitches to the zipper teeth has to be maybe 1/8th inch. There just isn't room for the insulation. It would be better though, because there'de be less of a cold spot at the zipper.
Try it on scrap pieces.
I think you have to have one row of stitches go through fabric/insulation/fabric, and another row of stitches as close as possible going through fabric/zipper tape/fabricMar 12, 2013 at 5:09 pm #1964883
I've got my fabric, insulation and zipper… time to practice on a few scraps. I just need to find a solid block of time to put it all together. I have a feeling I'll be using lots and lots of pins and lots and lots of clothes pins… and a brand new seam ripper! Unfortunately, that's my most prized tool when I sew.Mar 13, 2013 at 7:17 am #1965026
@lunchandynnerLocale: Pacific Northwest
Good luck with your bag! I'll be staying my cutting sewing today or tomorrow. My package just left federal way USPS sorting facility (about 20 miles from Seattle) this morning… But don't know if it'll make it to my local USPS for final delivery in time. I might just swing on by to it if it doesn't make it onto the delivery truck.
It's funny that a package can go from east coast to west coast in the same day, but final delivery from sorting facility to local facility to my place can take 2 days (20 mile trip)
Anyways, good luck and let us know how the sewing goes! Remember, you can pin strips of news paper onto the insulation to keep it from catching on your presser foot.Mar 19, 2013 at 12:07 pm #1967468
I'm pretty proud of my little quilt.
Finshed size is 37" wide, 53" long and just over 12oz.(by my crappy scale).
Materials used were: 1.1 oz. ripstop 2nds from DIY gear supply for the shell/lining and 5.0oz APEX from Thru-Hiker and a 48" #5 vislon separating zipper from zipperstop.
Here is everything all layed outand cut:
Zippers pinned in place:
I decided to run a basting stitch? to hold the zipper where I wanted it before sewing the insulation:
Then, following An-D's style, I sewed the insulation with the ripstop on top, using a zipper foot to follow the zipper. It worked out great, no problems with the insulation catching or sliping I just had to keep everything moving through the machine. I then removed the basting stitch and turned the quilt rightside out. I finished it with a rolled hem on head and foot for a drawstring channel:
And finally the finished product:
I had way too much fun! I might be hooked on MYOG now!Mar 19, 2013 at 12:41 pm #1967485
What's the difference between a Vislon zipper and a non-vislon zipper?Mar 19, 2013 at 2:04 pm #1967517
I'm no expert but I think the vislon zipper is made from delron and are supposed to stand up to harsh weather. I'm not sure if there is a difference between a plastic molded zipper and a vislon zipper… I like them because they require less maintenance than a coil zipper… For me the extra weight vs. a coil zipper was worth it.Mar 19, 2013 at 2:10 pm #1967519
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
With a child that size, you could probably your insulated jacket and get multi-use points. She'll outgrow it before the end of summer and you'll be back to the drawing board :)Mar 19, 2013 at 2:40 pm #1967536
Dale, you're probably right about the puffy jacket… But this bag does fit my 3 year old nephew great… so I figure we can get 2-3 seasons out of it and then it can be passed down to our next child (planning on having a few more). Mostly, I got some good practice for when I make one for myself and my wife though.Mar 19, 2013 at 3:00 pm #1967546
@lunchandynnerLocale: Pacific Northwest
That's some good work there! That's so cool you made one for your kid. Can also be used as an insulated cape for playing superman/batman on cold nights!Mar 19, 2013 at 3:10 pm #1967549
An-d… Awesome idea! I didn't think about the super hero applications!Jun 23, 2013 at 2:37 pm #1999147
Well, a quick update on the quilt/bag. We have used the quilt a couple times so far, once even on a night that got to 30˚F and our 8 month old daughter was roasty toasty. The quilt worked great! However, we won't be doing any sub freezing trips for a while, she did not like being bundled up all day and night without hands to play with everything! While the quilt worked great then, she was pretty immobile when she was sleeping. She is starting to get much more active at night so keeping her in the quilt/bag may be a challenge in the coming months. And hopefully, no more sub freezing nights…
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