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Back to School Backpack Makeover Tutorial

I participated in a Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for OshKosh B’Gosh. 
I received an OshKosh B’Gosh gift card to facilitate my post and a promotional item to 
thank me for my participation. All opinions and ideas are my own.

Back to School Backpack Makeover TutorialHave you noticed how crazy expensive backpacks are this year? On top of all the new items needed for school, who wants to spend $40 or more for something worn only to and from school? I decided I would much rather save that money for new back to school outfits from OshKosh B’Gosh and give some inexpensive backpacks a fun makeover.

While we were shopping for fresh, new clothes for my son, I found some super cool iron-on patches near the front register and was able to fit them into my budget. I knew just how to use them–to decorate our plain $5 backpacks!

We purchased two backpacks, since they were so inexpensive, so my son can switch depending on which outfit he wears (though his little brother claimed one of them as his own.) We bought a black one and a blue one.

(I couldn’t resist the play on words below):

Back to BackpackBackpack Makeover Tutorial

What You Need

Really, this depends on how you want to decorate and what your child’s school allows (i.e. some schools may not allow keychains or studs.) We used:


1. Again, you have so much creative leeway on this one, but I will share how we made ours. First and foremost you will want to check the material your backpack is made from. Ours were polyester so we had to take that into consideration with our iron heat setting.

2. For lighter-colored fabrics, you can use fabric markers to draw designs. I drew a mountain, some birds, clouds, and pine trees on the blue backpack. If you want to design on a darker fabric, try using puff paint!

Back to School Backpack Makeover Step 23. Preheat your iron and test a small section to make sure it is hot enough, but not too hot so the fabric does not melt. I had my heat set to medium-high.

4. Iron out the area where you plan to add patches until it is warm to the touch. This will help them stick better.

5. Place the patches where you want them to stick. You will probably need to give them each individual attention and iron one at a time. I ironed each for about a minute, pressing firmly. Make sure the patches are completely attached; if they are not, continue to iron until they are.

Back to School Backpack Makeover Step 36. Add your studs around the patches and even around other parts of the backpack! We found studs that you simply press through the fabric then fold the prongs over. Make sure the prongs are secured so they will not catch on anything. I folded them by hand then pounded them down lightly with a heavy object to make sure they were secured tightly.

Back to School Backpack Makeover Step 4Here is the before and after picture! My boys absolutely love the new looks.

Back to School Backpack Makeover Before and AfterThe newly made-over backpacks look stylish with our favorite back to school outfits from OshKosh B’Gosh and they were so simple to make.

My son is all set for gym days…

Back to Bgosh Gym ClothesAnd everyday!

Back to Bgosh PlaidA new outfit and a nice backpack are a great way to be prepared for the new school year. OshKosh B’Gosh has your must-haves like gym clothing, jeans, and graphic tees, all perfect for your active children.

One of my favorite clothing pieces purchased is their B’Gosh Blue Jeans, a staple item for any back to school look. I can tell they will last and they are stylish. They even have “the World’s Best Overalls” that are so cute! I absolutely adore their bold prints like the new Black, White, and Indigo collection. See one of the outfits we made below!

Back to Bgosh Indigo CollectionMy son’s favorite is probably the outer space shirt because it glows-in-the-dark!! 

Back to Bgosh Glow in the Dark

You will find that their products are high-quality, trendy, and affordable.

Find an OshKosh B’Gosh store near you.

Back to School Backpack Makeover Tutorial with Oshkosh Bgosh

What is your favorite back to school style? Share them in the comments below!


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  1. Very cool! It really gives these backpacks some personality. I love them!

  2. I love what you did here! I will definitely be linking to this tutorial.

  3. Being a senior citizen, I haven’t needed a backpack recently but I checked them out today when I was in Kohl’s. They are really expensive. A mom on a budget should appreciate your tutorial as a way to save money and I should think older kids would love to personalize their backpacks.

  4. This backpack tutorial is so fun!! And I have 3 kids in school, and definitely checking out OshKosh B’Gosh clothing line! My boys would love the outer space shirt BECAUSE it glows in the dark! 🙂

  5. What a fun idea to dress up my daughter’s backpack and make it her own! I love the clothes from Oshkosh as well! I wore Oshkosh clothing when I was little and it is awesome to see that their clothing is still around plus fashionable and afforable!

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