Introduction: Medical Quick Roll
Welcome to a tutorial on sewing a quick deploy medical roll.
" 'Tis just but a scratch, " Monty Python and The Holy Grail.
At some point in life we have cut, slice, scrape, or have shredded our skin at the most inconvenient time and more likely than not, far from a quick fix. Whether it be from a sewing poke or a gardening chainsaw to the knee (A story for later time). Either way, we want to stop the bleed and protect it from infection. Digging through a first aid kit bag or box you can never see what you want at first glance, with medical quick roll, you can. Let's get to the fix'n and sew this up!
- Sewing machine
- 90/14 or 100/16 leather sewing machine needles
- 12" x 23" 500D DWR nylon grey/black fabric
- 11" x 3" 200D nylon yellow fabric
- (2) 22" x 5" clear vinyl plastic strips
- 6" x 1/2" red Velcro strip
- Red/ Black nylon thread
- Scissors or rotatory cutter
- Cutting mat
- Measuring tape
- Sharpie marker
- Sewing stays or clips (pins will poke ya)
Step 1: Cut and Prep Material
500D DWR nylon is a good choice due to its ability to take a beating against tearing, and it has water repellent properties. (NOTE: The "D" after 500D is denier a measurement of fiber thickness and DWR is Durable Water Repellent, hence 200D is thinner more flexible than 500D).
- Cut the 500D fabric to 23" x 12", our final dimension of the project will be 22" x 11" when rolled out, and 11" x 3" approximately folded/ rolled.
-Cut a strip of the 200D yellow to 11" x 3 ", this will be used as a pocket and end reinforcement to the roll.
-Cut one vinyl strip 5" x 11"
-Cut one vinyl strip 4" x 11" original plan was to have equal size pockets but smaller has its own function.
Once the 500D fabric is cut, fold a 1/2" seam allowance on each long end (23" side) and iron down at low heat to create an even edge. Heat transfer paper is ideal to avoid unnecessary melting of the nylon. This seam will create a nice hold and even pocket to place the vinyl in for easier sewing.
Step 2: Sew Vinyl Strip Window in Place
******WARNING: Be aware of your machines capability, using leather sewing needles made for your machine will help punch through the vinyl and 2 layers of 500D folded nylon. I suggest using a few scrap runs and different thread tension settings, as well as a stitch length that works for your machine as they will differ from my 1980 Kenmore 158-in beast mode.****** OR use 200D material for entire project.
Check vinyl strip for nice straight cuts and any unwanted defects. Use clips to hold the material together and avoid any unwanted large pin holes, do this on the 23" length sides. Place vinyl strip in folded seam, clip in and sew down your 1/2" seam allowance as seen in photo. Sew this into the "wrong side of the fabric" as this will be the interior of your roll, see photo.
Optional: Only if you have heat transfer paper or a silicon sheet you can iron out the vinyl on low heat if it is stiff and wavy as seen in photo.
Step 3: Supply Layout and Sizing
Depending on your medical gear requirements and deployment purposes, a general layout of supplies is recommended. I did this all before sewing to get a general ideal of what would work for a basic kit and save you the hassle of gathering up miscellaneous supplies.
Next step is to mark your vinyl pockets with a sharpie to customize your pocket size and needs. Think ahead of how thick an item maybe and how many bandages you want to fit in each pocket, this vinyl will not stretch or expand.
Step 4: Pocket Stitching
I chose to use the HONEYCOMB stitch on my machine mainly because it looks cool, and it actually serves as a good tear resistant stitch to adjoining pockets. Remember to back stitch on front and back end of these stitches to lock in the thread.
- Next fold over the left seam a 1/2" to seal that side pocket and run a straight stitch down the 11" side as seen in the photo. I recommend hand feeding/ turning the needle through the corner layer.
- Add the yellow 11" x 3" strip to the unfinished side creating a 2 1/2" pocket on the interior of the roll as seen in photo. The the other 1/2 " of yellow strip will wrap around to the exterior of the roll to be stitched in as reinforcement, stitch around exterior perimeter of yellow fabric only. This full length 11" pocket can be used for longer items like splints and tools.
Step 5: Securing the Roll
Finish up with a Velcro strap, I was originally going to use a larger Nylon strap as seen in supply photo but the Velcro was a better option.
Sew a 6" section of the hook side Velcro strap facing down on the exterior of the roll attaching it with a square or cross pattern of stitching. WARNING: Make sure you are between interior pockets down the middle raceway so you do not seal up a pocket by accident.
- Next fill your medical roll with items that you will need, or intend fill it with.
- Roll the kit from the yellow pocket side and mark where your hook side Velcro lands on the exterior of the roll.
THIS MARK DETERMINES WHERE THE LOOP SIDE IS SEWN IN.
- Sew in 6" of the loop side face up, paying attention to the previous warning above.
-Do a final perimeter straight stitch in red to give it an aesthetic touch of first aid color.
Stay safe and remember: "It's just a flesh wound". - Monty Python and the Holy Grail