Sleeping Bag Suit

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About: I am an exhibit developer at the Exploratorium.

Turn your extra sleeping bags into a lounging suit!

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

****This instructable needs to be done on an industrial sewing machine.*****

Sewing the bags on a regular sewing machine could damage your machine. Ask around, one of your friends may have one you could use.

You will need two poly filled sleeping bags. Down filled bags will be a huge mess!

Flat bags are easier to cut out a pattern from. I used one flat and one mummy bag.

You will also need some quilt edge trim from a fabric store.

SHARP strong scissors. My hand got tired and I had to occasionally take a break.

Step 2: Cut Out a Pattern

First, Unzip one of your bags and lay it down flat on the floor.

Get a top and bottom from your closet . I laid down a large rain jacket and baggy pants on top. Then I traced around adding approx 1-1/2" extra for the seam.

Leave extra length in the sleeves so they are not too short. You can trim the if you need to later.

The feet are tricky. I just cut out huge balloon feet and trimmed them later. I am not much of a darter but I bet that would be a better way to sew this. I simply made my feet large enough to bend at the ankles with out cutting off my circulation. Adding leather or vinyl to the soles would be a nice upgrade!

Step 3: Include a Zipper Leg

Your suit will be much easier to get on and off if you include a zipper down one leg. Instead of adding your own, use one of the existing bag zippers.

I used my mummy bag's zipper.

This step is accomplished during the pattern cutting of the second bag.

Lay out your second bag on the floor but keep it zipped. Line up the zipper with one of you legs. Safety pin the pants to the bag. spread the bag out flat with your pants on top. Now cut a slit down the back of the bag's mid line.

Spread out the bag flat on the floor, add your top pattern (jacket), and trace. Cut out pattern as for first bag.

Line up the two bags and trim off any excess .

If using a mummy bag, you can use the head part to make a hood.

Step 4: Pin and Sew

Line up and pin your bags with the insides facing out. Cover the edges with quilt edging, the 2" wide size. Pin together with giant sized safety pins.

Start sewing. Use upholstery thread and a giant needle on a industrial sewing machine.



Step 5: Add a Pocket?

I added a pocket out of some of the leftovers. It is more stylish than functional, but it works for me.

Step 6: Try It Out!

I wear my suit when I just can't get warm and don't want to wear a bunch of layers.

And you can take a little nap too!

Step 7: Store It.

I used an extra stuff sack to store it.

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    64 Discussions

    Wow! Could this double as an insulated suit for, say, base jumping??!?! In case I ever need something like a flight suit that won't cost a fortune, I'll make sure to make myself one of these! Also, Cutco's Super-Shears would cut through sleeping bag materials like it was paper. I used it to cut the extra 2sq feet of space at the bottom of my sleeping bag a few weeks ago. I used a quick-stitch awl to lock-stick the seams. I'm definitely getting an industrial sewing machine though.

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    porklips

    5 years ago on Introduction

    Besides being awesome and super sexy, I like the idea of wearing this to work, just in case I need to take a nap.

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    JMMBA

    8 years ago on Step 7

    that is f#cking awesome

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    larrymarctte

    8 years ago on Step 6

    What a great idea!  Could you possibly make me one? I could send you all of the materials to make one I take a size Ladies X Large!  My e-mail is larrymarcotte@ymail.com please and thank you! P.S. Once I have it on, I will never want to get out of it. Maybe you could  make me a "PINK" one?

    Thanks Larry!

    1 reply
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     Hi Larry,

    I appreciate the offer but I'm afraid I will have to politely decline.  But if you ever run across any adult sized pink sleeping bags I would snap them up if I were you.


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    codongolev

    9 years ago on Introduction

    I want to get like, four sleeping bags, each a little bigger than theprevious ones, make suits out of all of them, and put them all on. thenjump off the roof.

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    denisek.sfD.L.H.

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    It took me the better part of a weekend. But it is a good idea to take two weekends since it is hard on the wrists sewing such a large piece.

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    SarahpinStation

    9 years ago on Step 2

    Something I thought of:: Instead of cutting out feet, cut the feet off at the ankles to leave an opening for your foot. You can also add elastic band around the ankle so it fits snugly to your ankle. This will make it so you can still wear winter boots if you'd like.

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    rhino

    9 years ago on Introduction

    With bed bugs making a comeback I think you would want to make this with NEW sleeping bags, not yard sale ones. This is a great idea and I have often wished for something like this when sitting around a campfire.

    3 replies
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    dzent1rhino

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Bedbugs seldom survive a thorough washing and drying. This is a non-problem for anyone with a normal sense of intelligence.

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    porcupinemammadzent1

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Lovely idea! BTW, I saw a documentary about apartment buildings in Toronto that were infested with bed bugs and the tenants had tried everything to get rid of them. According to the story, washing didn't work, and everything had to be burned

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    dzent1porcupinemamma

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    Sorry, all kinds of laundry additives will kill them. Their problem was reinfestation from the building itself, not that bedbugs can't be killed in the laundry.