This was another birthday present for the Pie. When he goes off to play Street Fighter, he brings what is known as a “setup,” which includes an XBox, the game, his fightstick and a display monitor. He can put pretty much everything in one backpack, but carrying the monitor to and fro is more difficult, especially when negotiating doors and long hallways and preventing it from getting damaged while sliding around in the trunk of the car. So he has often wished aloud that he had some kind of specialized carrier that would make humping the monitor to and fro less of a pain in the patoot.
The idea percolated in my head for a few months, and then, about a week before his birthday, I figured it out. I managed to make this, from concept art to completion, in about three hours, on a horribly humid and rainy Sunday afternoon. I’m not sure if this particular DIY is practical for you, but maybe you have something awkward you need to carry around on occasion and if so I hope this inspires you to make something that is perfect for the purpose!
First, obviously, I measured the crap out of everything. I studied the front and back of the monitor, figuring out where the base stuck out of the back and how wide it was when it did so. To make this custom caddy stable, it made more sense for the caddy itself to enclose only the screen, and have the base stick out the bottom. This means that you can put the whole thing down on a surface without it overbalancing and tipping over.
I picked up this absolutely awesome Spider-Man fabric at Wal-Mart. I couldn’t resist.
And if I turned it sideways, it was the perfect size for a custom caddy.
This quilted stuff I grabbed at Fabricland, as well as some red velcro and some red strapping.
In order to ensure the continuing accuracy of my measurements, I had to cut the stuff in the basement where the sewing machine was, and then carry it upstairs two storeys and hold it against the monitor in question. I would have brought the monitor down but it would have been harder to explain if the Pie had come home early. This shot shows the fold-over flap at the top.
Now I needed to figure out the hole for the base and stem.
Measure, check, measure, check again, and then finally cut. Fortunately I bought enough of the quilted stuff to have a do-over if I messed it up, but I didn’t want to waste it.
The slit in the back of the caddy with the hole for the base.
Here it is with the foldover flap pinned down for measuring purposes.
Now to attach it to the outside fabric.
I pinned it in place as straight as I could, and mitred the corners to avoid fraying.
In order to have the Spider-Man fabric wrap properly around the quilting along the slit, I widened it slightly to give me a little wiggle room.
Not much wiggle room, but some.
The pinned slit.
This gives you an idea of how it’s going to look from the back, with the top flap folded down.
And the flap open.
Then I sewed it all down.
It’s not perfect in the hole but it’s the best I could do at the time.
Now for all the bits to hold it together.
Each strap is a metre long, and I pinned them far enough down on the caddy so they would support the weight of the monitor while not putting too much strain on the fabric. They’re also at a comfortable spot for the straps to go over your shoulder, with the monitor balanced against your hip.
Sewn in place with reinforced stitches. You can see here how the foldover flap keeps the two sides split by the slit together.
In order to keep the foldover flap in place I needed the velcro. One fuzzy strip across the flap and a hook strip on either side of the slit.
Sewing velcro on a machine is not easy.
It was hot work, in fact, but the humidity outside didn’t make anything easier.
But I did it!
So basically here’s how it works.
You open it up and align the slit with the base of the monitor, tucking the strap over the monitor (not shown in this shot, sorry).
Slide the slit along the base of the monitor (sideways works best).
Twist the carrier so the solid side is in front, covering the screen.
Lift the caddy by the straps …
… and fold the flap over to hold the two back ends together.
So you can easily carry it and just as easily set it down.
Here’s me trying to take a selfie while holding the thing on my shoulder.