When you absolutely don’t need to acquire more fabric or make more clothes, what do you do? Buy a bunch of notions and plan to make a pack.

I’ve had the make your own gear (MYOG) sewing community on my radar for a while and was looking at pack patterns over the weekend. A lot of what’s out there is meant to be made ultralight (UL, of course) and going from my 3-pound Osprey to a 19 oz DIY pack sounded pretty good… but then I realized we just don’t do the kinds of hikes that need a 30L pack. Honestly, the Osprey is overkill for our afternoons up Millcreek, so when I saw Stitchback Patterns’ “Lumbar Pack” above, I thought, “This is perfect.”

It’s big enough to hold snacks, a hat and gloves, and a first aid kit (my non-negotiables) and it has that chonky hip belt and pockets for water bottles. I still have Ottertex outdoor fabric from an order two years ago, so my pack won’t be ultralight–but you know it will be color coordinated:

Notions shopping was FUN (because shopping!): I found colored buckles and webbing at Strapworks, and the khaki accents and even orange spacer mesh at Rockywoods.

As soon as my $50 in notions and shipping arrive, I can get started on my “free” pack!