I like to DIY. It’s satisfying and certainly much cheaper than purchasing something new. And if I have a potentially good item, I'd rather repurpose it. Lately, I’ve been looking for a camera backpack. Some I've tried are too big, too small, too expensive, or the straps fit weird (too many are designed for a man’s chest, not a woman’s - I’ll go into that at another time).
So I decided to make my own. I came across padded insert options which allow you to create your own full sized bag/backpack or to carry a small camera in a purse or shoulder bag, and my lightbulb went off!
I have this backpack from the Sierra Club that I really like but have only used a few times. So I thought this would be the perfect use for it. I took inside bag measurements and rather quickly came upon this insert by Selens on Amazon.
The Selens insert is padded along the sides and the bottom and includes 2 large and 4 small velcro’ed dividers so I can design the bag the way I need it.
I still have room in the top of the backpack for a sweatshirt and/or rain jacket (it is springtime, you know). And my Sierra Club backpack has these nice pockets around the front that can easily hold smaller gear like a cable release, filters, lens wipes, etc. Repurposing the backpack worked out wonderfully.