Condo Blues: How to Repair Rips, Tears, and Holes in a Sleeping Bag

Thursday, January 12, 2023

How to Repair Rips, Tears, and Holes in a Sleeping Bag

I tried washing one of our sleeping bags in my washing machine thinking it would fit since I washed our other sleeping bag in this same machine.

Turns out I was wrong.

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Note to self: Next time go to a laundry mat and wash the sleeping bags using a big industrial size washer and dryer.

We invested in buying a good Coleman cold weather sleeping bag similar to this one. (Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience.) It’s in my best interest to repair it since the rest of the sleeping bag is perfectly fine and would be a bit expensive to replace for cosmetic reasons. I’d rather spend that cash on extra s’more supplies to be honest.

Fortunately, repairing a sleeping bag is easy and may already have what you to need to fix at home.

How to Repair Sleeping Bag Rips, Holes, and Tears the Easy Way!


You will need:

Hand sewing needle

Coordinating thread

Straight pins

Cloth patch 


How to sew a sleeping bag tutorial:

1. Stick any stuffing that may have come out of the hole back into its respective hole/rip.

2. Use the straight pins to pin the large and small rips closed with the straight pins sew them closed by hand using a whip stitch.


can you sew a sleeping bag



Repair small sleeping bag holes by hand sewing over them with a satin stitch.


how to repair a hole in a sleeping bag

 It's not very pretty, but it works!


How to Patch a Hole in a Sleeping Bag

The largest rip by the zipper was a tricky repair because there wasn’t much stable fabric on either side of the rip to sew the hole closed. This area is gets a little more wear being near the place where the zipper sometimes sticks (and always in the middle of a cold night when I want to quickly zip it up more for warmth.) Since I knew that part of the bag would get yanked more often by sleepy hands, I covered the area with a cut to fit denim iron on patch like this kind. You can use any type of cloth to make a patch for a sleeping bag. I chose a cut to fit denim patch because I can sew and iron it on for extra stability.

Since I’ve had iron on patches get loose around the edges over time, I first sewed the patch over the big ripped hole first. Since this sleeping bag is cotton, I was able to activate the glue on the back of the patch with a hot iron without fear of melting the shell fabric of the sleeping bag. 


how to repair rips holes tears in a sleeping bag
I recommend sewing the iron on patch to the sleeping bag before ironing it on. One the glue is heat activated it makes the patch extremely hard to push a needle through. Guess how I know?

If this was a nylon sleeping bag, I would have patched the rip with a self adhesive washable patch made for outdoor fabric repair. You can learn more about Tear Aid Fabric Repair patch that are made to repair outdoor gear (including things like tents and awnings) here..

And while I was at it, I lubricated the zipper by running a graphite pencil over the zipper teeth where the zipper like to get stuck. That should keep the zipper from sticking in the future.

Looking for more sleeping bag, tent, and gear repairing ideas? Check out the following options – and more! - below!  

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