Plans for the Future: Santa’s Bag

Well my last full week of college just ended, and I will be heading off for another four to six years of higher education in the fall. But this gives me a chance to enjoy myself for the spring and summer. During that time, I would like to start putting more effort into this blog, creating guides for MYOG newbies and addicts alike.

What I would like to accomplish is the creation of a (nearly) full gear list. Starting with the big three (the quilt is already done) and moving on to smaller items. It will be a pretty long project, and so the end goal may change as I go through the process. However, there will be certain goals I try to reach in whatever guides I write over the next few months.

1. First, each item will work well with a UL or SUL kit and lifestyle, keeping weight and functionality in mind.

2. Make the items with patterns that are easily scaled for different sizes of people or different needs. This part always seems to be a tricky part of making gear. I am one size ad make my gear to fit me, but others will need a larger quilt, more volume in the pack or a tarp for two, so what size should they use? I will try to touch on this in each guide to help make this easier.

3. Create patterns that are cost effective. For those of us on a tight budget, being thrifty is a great reason to MYOG. Most of the patterns will use high quality materials, but with the cost of the materials in mind. At times, this may mean that I use seconds or maybe not the absolute BEST fabric on the market. More often than not, the gains from using better fabrics are marginal, and for the frugal minds out there, this isn’t much of an issue.

4. Make it simple and fun. I think these two things are often intertwined. If the project is too confusing and difficult, you stop having fun and starting cursing under your breath.

I say that I will make nearly a whole list because some things are needed that simply are not worth making. For example, the Photon keychain light is a great tool for UL backpacking, and while it may be an interesting project, it would not be cost or time effective to make this rather than buy it, to my knowledge.  For this reason, I won’t end up making everything for a gear list, but I will try to hit as many items needed for a solid gear list as possible.

I’m hoping this project will help others in the community, but I may need some assistance as well. My gear list is, for the most part, happily done, which means I will have items building up. To both alleviate some of the cost of this project and keep my closet from cluttering, I will be selling some of the items as I make them over the next few months at a pretty low cost. As well, I may be available to make some extras of some of the items, as time works out. I’m not trying to start a business or make much cash, so the prices, which I will decide as I make items, should look pretty attractive.

I’m open to any ideas that people have on guides they would like to see. I’ve got some ideas, but I am making these guides for others, so everyone’s opinion matters.

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One thought on “Plans for the Future: Santa’s Bag

  1. I definitely like the goal of a fully MYOG kit but also realize that some things just don’t make sense. Personally I like saving money by doing MYOG. So in regards to the photon keychain, the exact same model can be had far cheaper than what photon offers. I know there have been links on BPL to dealextreme where you can get 10 of those keychain lights for under five dollars. Just search the site for LED Keychains. The very least it’s worth it to get the 10 batteries as spares for your photon 😉

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