Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 7 months ago

How to make a backpack out of Duct Tape

There are many different ways you can make a backpack. This first tutorial will show how to make one messenger bag style.


Supplies needed for this backpack:

  • Almost a whole roll of Duct Tape
  • Two magnetic purse clips (I found these at Michaels)
  • Pairs of magnetic buttons for extra pockets (The stronger the better)


  1. First make the 5 side sheets of the bag. These sizes were generated from the size of all the notebooks I carry with me at school. If you need more or less space in your bag feel free to change the two side pieces and the bottom from 5" to something else.
    1. Front and back - 11" by 15"
    2. Left and right - 5" by 11"
    3. Bottom - 5" by 15"
  2. Tape the 5 pieces together per the sizes. So tape the short edges of the left and right pieces to the short edge of the bottom. 15" sides of the front and back to the long edge on the bottom, and then fold all the sides up and tape them together. If some of the sides are longer than others trim those now and then reinforce the seams by taping the top edge.
  3. Now make the top flap that will fold over the top of the bag and clip to the front with the magnetic purse clips. I made it a trapazoid but feel free to change it.
    1. Height - 16"
    2. Bases - 15" and 10"
  4. Tape the top flap to the top of the back piece (the 15" edge)
  5. Attach the magnetic clips to the two remaining corners on the top flap, then use these to guess where to place their pairs on the front of the back pack.
    1. My clips had two metal tabs that you're supossed to put through the fabric, then put a washer on it, and fold the tabs down. I added 4 layers of tape right where I was attaching the clips for strength and cut two slots in the tape a little smaller than the tabs so it would be nice and tight when I pushed the clips through.
  6. Make a 2" wide strip for the strap.
    1. Make it as long as you want it to be plus ~12" on both ends so you can attach it to the backpack. I made mine 52" + 2x12" but I'm also 6'1" so you will probably want it shorter than that.
    2. If you want you can wrap the strap in 4" wide duct tape (I got this at the local hardware store) so it doesn't peel and get sticky on the edges.
      1. UPDATE: This is almost required. Otherwise the strap gets sticky and leaves residue on everything you wear. (Can we say $300 letterman jacket?)
    3. To attach the strap to the backpack use tape and staples and attach the 12" on each end to the the two side pieces of the backpack.
  7. The last step is to add pockets as you want them. I added one pocket for pens and pencils, another one for my cell phone, and a third for all my USB cables and such for my calculator/ mp3 player etc.
    1. Make a square sheet the size you want your pocket.
    2. Place the square on the backpack where you want the pocket and tape only the bottom edge to the backpack.
    3. Turn the sheet down and tape the bottom inside of the pocket. This prevents what ever you put in the pocket from pulling the tape off and falling out the bottom of the pocket. (Makes you look real bad when you start losing pencils...)
    4. Turn the sheet back up and tape the two side edges.
    5. Repeat for each pocket, you can use magnetic buttons on these too if you want thew pockets to seal.


Congrats, you now are the proud owner of a duct tape backpack. Over time it will peel and get sticky, so just cover the sticky parts with more duct tape and it will be fine. Any questions/comments about this tutorial, email me at KennethFinnegan2007@GMail.com



External Link


Didn't read all of it myself but lots of pictures and VERY verbose.


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