Design and technology merge to create a twice-functional diaper bag that will serve to illustrate useful reminders on what's missing and what's accounted for before setting out for the day. This stylish bag will use fabric switches that will trigger five or six LEDs, which will reflect the current conditions of the bag, whether half full or half empty. You'll never be without your essential baby items: diapers, wipes, bottle, bibs, food, binkies or, in my house, a most-important iPad. The soft-light LEDs will display a gentle reminder to restock on items that may be missing. You'll never leave home without having exactly what you need to make your baby, a happy baby.

Purpose: Create a multi-functional bag that creates space-holders for specific baby or child items. Generate an interactive reminder for items that need restocking or essential items you can't leave home without.

Design Intention:
  • Be the coolest mom on the block with a custom-designed, cool-looking diaper bag with interactive components.
  • Item-specific input pockets: bottle or sippy cup, iPad/changing pad, bibs or binkies, phone or forks, diapers & wipes
  • Generate item input responses with fabric switches and LEDs as a second function of the bag itself. LEDs will be On when items are missing and Off when they're not. 
Materials: Fashionable outside fabric for hip moms who prefer to look chic. Ripstop lining for the inside. Lilypad Arduino, 5 LEDs, 1/2 webbing, 2" webbings, conductive thread, Lilypad power supply, 5 metal snaps, 24 gauge wire, 1/4" elastic, velcro tabs, 1 or 2 12-14" zippers, heavy duty and medium weight interfacing

Step 1: Cutting the Pattern

For the purpose of this bag, it's important to start with the outside materials and start building before working on the inside liner. Although, you could cut the pieces and assemble them as you go along. The pattern was made from interfacing which is easy to use and allows for repeated use. Select the fabric to use for the outside, something that seems durable, thick and easy to wash if necessary. If the fabric has a specific pattern, stripes for example, be mindful of the direction of the pattern and your cutting in relation to the desired end product. If you have the right interfacing, you can also use the pattern for the outside to strengthen the fabric if need be. Cutting all pieces at once is useful, then you can just start assembling without stopping to cut or measure. After you have cut out the pattern, you can start to cut the fabric. The pattern is measured with a 1/2" seam allowance. Using pinking shears on delicate or easily-frayable fabric is helpful. For the outside, you'll need to make sure you have the following cut:
  1. Back x 1
  2. Sides x 2 
  3. Side Pockets
  4. Front x 1
  5. Front zipper pocket (optional) x 1
  6. Bottom x 1
  7. Strap Fabric x 2
  8. Strap Webbing x 2
For the liner you'll need to following:
  1. Back x 1
  2. Back Pocket x 1
  3. Sides x 2 
  4. Side pockets x 2 
  5. Front x 1 
  6. Bottom x 1
Medium weight interfacing:
  1. Front x 1
  2. Back x 1
  3. Sides x 2
  4. Zipper pocket x1
Heavy weight interfacing:
  1. Front x 1
  2. Back x 1
  3. Sides x 2
  4. Bottom x 1
Please refer to the PDF for a checklist of other pattern pieces or elements.

I really like your 'ible. It took me a minute to understand that (and correct me if I am wrong) each pocket has a self closing switch that lights a light when empty. Each pocket it intended for one specific item, so an empty pocket means that item is missing. At first I thought you were using RFID tags somehow, and I was really excited, but the simplicity of this makes it better.<br><br>Since you said you are hoping to improve on the idea I thought I'd offer a suggestion. You could have a &quot;soiled&quot; item pocket that worked in the opposite way and alerted you in some way to remind you it is NOT empty. I would think (as I don't have kids) that a soiled pocket would be a must and forgetting to empty it would be an easy, ugly mistake.<br><br>Great job. I look forward to seeing your next 'ible.
This fantastic project was made as part of the Tangible Interaction course in <a href="http://dms.du.edu">Digital Media Studies</a> at the University of Denver.
Wouldn't it be easier to ditch the lilipad and go with a simple analogue circuit? Especially since all you're doing is having the LEDs turn on?&nbsp; Sure, you'd use more thread, but it might be cheaper and more simple than&nbsp;using a Lilipad.<br> <br> Also, if you sewed in small magnets, instead of snaps, you could have your circuit automatically close for you when nothing is in there. You could buy some very small Rare Earth Magnets, only 100 for $10 off amazon, and put them behind your conductive thread on both sides of a pocket.<br> <br> A very cool idea overall.&nbsp; I wish I could sew better so that I could make one as a baby shower gift.
For sure. I have limited experience with the micro-controllers and the wiring concepts as whole so that aspect is new for me. I just happened to be working with Arduino in the class I built this for so I needed to implement an Arduino-concept into it. I had the magnet idea and bought some but the magnets I had would always keep the circuit closed with items that weren't holding it open, so then I thought about flaps, etc.etc. It's a bag-engineering dilemma as far how you want the pockets to work vs how the LEDs work. If I found smaller magnets it would have been better. That was my original intent. However, I suppose the snap gives you a bit more control over opening and closing the circuit so it's a bit of a toss up there. Thank you for your insight; I was trying to figure out how to build an analog circuit as you mentioned and it just dawned on me! So yes, ditching the Lilypad would be faster, cheaper and easier so thank you very much!
If you'd like some analogue circuit help, just send me a message. I've only been at this whole circuitry stuff a few months myself, but will offer my basic circuitry knowhow to you in any way possible. (I keep thinking of ways to make random bags I have into &quot;Tron&quot; bags... he he he)<br><br>You can always do conductive velcro, which would be more simple than the magnets but also (more or less) stay shut on it's own.<br><br>As someone who is gaga over solar power you could always throw a solar panel in there somewhere (like one of those fancy flexable ones) to make it self charging. But that might be overkill....
I'll also check out the Rare Earth Magnets. Very exciting stuff!
You should definitely put this on kickstarter! I bet it would be a big hit.
Gosh, thanks for the suggestion! That's actually a great idea because it's still a WIP for me. I think it has some great potential and I'd like to refine it for sure. (Design and technology). I really appreciate your feedback! It's an offshoot of other bags I've made...see pic. : ) Cheers!
This diaper purse is amazing! Thanks for this great Instructable.
Thank you! I'm still working out some kinks but I'm glad it shows nicely. : )<br><br>

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