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3 Back to School Projects

It’s Back to School time! Get out your Trapper Keeper and sharpen those pencils! Today we’ve put together three really fun ways to personalize Back to School. All of them are very simple and you can do these projects with your kids. (These work for grown-ups and college age kids too. Everyone here at Oh Happy Day wanted to recreate all three for themselves!)

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

PROJECT 1: Backpack Patches

If you’re a design minded parent (like me!) it makes you die a little bit inside when you realize you might have to buy a Pokemon backpack (or whatever character du jour they are into.) What’s worse is you’re going to have to look at it for the next 9 months. These backpack patches are the perfect compromise. I went through Etsy and a bunch of sites with my kids and they got to pick all of their favorite patches (including a couple Pokemon and Avengers and Nintendo themed ones.) After they all arrived in the mail we sat down together and assembled them. It was really fun. The result is a very handsome backpack that my kids are stoked about.

Backpack Tips: If you search for “Patches” on Pinterest there are a lot of great indie shops with beautiful patches. We also had a lot of luck on Etsy and found a lot of affordable ones. Some of the patches ironed on perfectly but others were inconsistent (not sure if it was user error or the backpack fabric that was causing havoc). We found that this fabric glue worked great when we ran into problems.

Supplies: Backpacks (in so many colors), Fabric Glue, Iron, Patch Shops: These Are Things, Kodiak Milly, Simple Patches.

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

PROJECT 2: Personalized Pencils

I always surprise my kids with personalized pencils at breakfast on the first day of school. It’s a fun little tradition and only costs $12 for a set! Usually I put things like “Super Moses” or “Ninja Roman.” This year I ordered a bunch with different encouraging sayings (some for my kids and some to use as gifts for friends.) I always use Explicitly Yours Pencils which is fast and awesome and has a terrible user interface.

Personalized Pencil Tips: It looks like at the time of this going live their site is closed for a couple weeks but I always choose the San Serif font in Gold for the type. The pencil colors aren’t clear when you order so you kind of have to guess but I love the mint color and the light pink and light blue are nice as well. FYI: They come unsharpened. Also: MUJI carries my favorite clear pencil case.

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

PROJECT 3: Iron on Letter Tees

This came about as I was shopping for cute back to school tees and realized the ones I liked were a bit pricey. I was reminded of all the iron-on tee days of my teenage years when I saw the Bando team go to Disneyland the other day and realized we could make our own for Back to School. I sat down with my kids and we brainstormed different T-shirt ideas.

T-Shirt Tips: These could not be easier. Choose the phrase you want to use. Lay the letters out centering them to the middle of the collar and Iron them on. So easy!

Supplies: Kids T-shirts or Sweatshirts, Iron & Iron On Letters

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

3 Back to School Projects | Oh Happy Day!

  1. Emily

    August 12, 2016

    I love these ideas! Although, for me, I don’t mind seeing my daughter pick out her backpack with a commercialized character on it. Maybe because it’s only her second year of doing it, and she’s so little that her personality is still starting to show, so when she has a choice to choose, seeing her pick Pokemon is fun because it’s something new I learn about her. But I’m sure in time that will change. And I love the pencil and shirt idea!

    • jordan
      • jordan
      • August 12, 2016

      I totally get it! No wrong way to do it!

  2. Kerajinan Borneo

    August 12, 2016

    So,cute i like your colors and kids must be very happy with a bag full color creations and ornaments

  3. india

    August 12, 2016

    Love love love all of these ideas!!! I’m hoping a grown adult can also wear one of those backpacks everyday covered in patches because they look awesome!!! Also, just a heads up, the Kodiak Milly link doesn’t work :/ I just looked it up on Etsy and found the shop but thought you’d want to change it for others.
    Thanks for the awesome post!!

  4. Grace

    August 12, 2016

    I love kanken and muji so much!

  5. Amy

    August 12, 2016

    Just bought the Pizza badge! It’s is perfect for my kid (and me)!

  6. Michelle

    August 13, 2016

    The backpacks are sooo cool!
    https://www.makeandmess.com/

  7. Jacqueline

    August 13, 2016

    These are awesome! I might try the patch backpack for myself.

    http://jackieomy.blogspot.ca/

  8. Mariana

    August 13, 2016

    Love this! Thanks for sharing.
    PS You are the best thing on Snapchat.

  9. pachi

    August 14, 2016

    how do iron on patches hold up in the washer and dryer?

  10. Ελένη

    August 15, 2016

    How many times do you use each iron on tranfer letter? For a word with two A for example you need two alphabet sets ?

  11. marcelina

    August 15, 2016

    so cool! I already have the patches and the kids, now I just need the backpacks jaja!

  12. Marissa Emmons

    August 15, 2016

    I love love love this idea. I am not a fan of the standard backpacks so this project is spot on! I also love the fact that my son and I will work on it together! We order the bag and are selecting the patches! Thanks for sharing!

  13. Mariana Green

    August 24, 2016

    Ok, so the pencil shop has finally reopened! About to press go on my order.

    I can’t see a ‘San Serif’ option, just a ‘McKellar – San Serif’? Do I go with that…?

    Thanking you!

    Hope you are enjoying NYC!

  14. Mariana Green

    August 24, 2016

    Oh dear, Explicitly Yours won’t ship to Australia…. BLAH! :(

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