The finished pouch, hanging from a dining room chair, filled with foam rocks. One rock peeks out of the gravity-fed "spout" at the bottom.

Gravity-fed Foam Rock Pouch

Mara’ramja everyone!
Fyaren here, your friendly neighborhood Kender knight-errant of Drentha.  In my travels, I’ve come across the issue of not having more than two arms to hold weapons (but then, hasn’t everyone?).  More specifically, myself and other Kender are often looking for neat places to stow our hoopak rocks—in shirts, under armor, tucked into the belt, places like that.  But no more!  I’ve devised a storage device (after careful research of fiber arts from other races) in which the rocks simply slide out of their own accord into a designated holder, ready for the next sling.

BEHOLD.  The gravity-fed rock pouch.

The finished pouch, hanging from a dining room chair, filled with foam rocks.  One rock peeks out of the gravity-fed "spout" at the bottom.
A satin-lined, gravity-fed back pouch for holding Dagorhir foam rocks during battle.

Obviously, the need for this design arose when I had no way to haul my rocks onto the field.  I’ve seen other Kender with smart little purses for their rocks, and just today Colbern said to me “why not make a pouch where you can grab rocks from the bottom?  Mind.  Blown.  So, I got right to work

I had some scraps of fabric from various projects and pouches and garb re-designs.  I laid them our next to my current (now former) rock sack, a burlap bag for Basmati Rice (sad).

My old (left) and new (right) rock sacks.  Rice included.
My old (left) and new (right) rock sacks. Rice included.

My initial designs ranged from mail pouch to baby-sling styles, but eventually I used an elastic-closed hole for the rocks and a simple drawstring for the top to refill the pack en masse once the battle’s over.  Rocks can be quickly re-loaded during battle through the stretchy bottom hole as well!

Various prototype sketches, conceptualizing a rock pouch.  The baby sling design is on the right; that idea came from a Facebook post earlier that day.
Various prototype sketches, conceptualizing a rock pouch. The baby sling design is on the right; that idea came from a Facebook post earlier that day.

Since rocks in Dagorhir require a fabric covering, and cotton knit covers are most common, I used a satin lining to avoid snagging as the rocks fell downward to the opening.  Think of how a gravity-fed airsoft or paintball hopper (debatably) works.  The pouch gets narrower toward the bottom, as well as having elastic around the opening, to funnel rocks down.

LARP physics make my STEM education more useful.  Pew pew pew!
LARP physics make my STEM education more useful.  Pew pew pew!

Here is a list of materials, and what they were salvaged from.  This pouch is 100% re-used parts!

  • Red linen: formerly the bottom of shortened pant legs
  • Red/brown keyhole-weave fabric: scrap left over from a short vest I made for Father Christmas 2012
  • Satin liner: pajamas given to me by my mother-in-law, which were a thrift-shop “costume” used in a high school play
  • Green leather: left by Peter at the pre-Rag build shop in 2016
  • Light-brown leather: dismantled from a duster I received in a trade at Ragnarok 201X
  • Dark brown leather: scrap from Colbern’s newest pouch-making endeavor
  • Leather strap: non-bonded thrift store belt with a nondescript brass(?) buckle

 

Construction of the pouch is straightforward:

  1. I patched together the red fabrics into the outer pouch front and back, then traced these onto the satin pajamas to make an identical liner. I oriented the pouch bodies so the seams would be sandwiched between the right sides (because of the taper there is only one correct orientation).
  2. While the outer pouch body was still flat, I appliqued my leather scraps using a home sewing machine. I tested the stitch on some scraps first, then carefully worked around all the edges.  I used leather because it wouldn’t fray like fabric applique, and I flipped over the shiny green leather for a better texture contrast.  I covered some of the stitches with black sharpie and added hash lines on the acorn cap.
  3. Sew the liner and outside pouch closed on the long (bias) seam.
  4. Flip the liner to the outside and stitch it down to make channels for the elastic and drawstrings. Originally I was planning to turn the outside linen layer inside, but I liked the contrast of the patterned satin liner, and the piece was a little longer than the outside pouch (intentionally, but not for this specific design).
  5. Thread the non-roll elastic through the bottom narrow hole, and thread a cotton drawstring through the top. I taped the elastic and string to the end of a short pencil to thread them through the channels easily.
  6. Stitch the belt, cut in half, to the back of the pouch, using a piece of leather on the inside to reinforce each contact.
  7. Fill with rocks! Hear the death cries of your enemies!

 

The rocks do slide down close to the bottom opening, but don’t always fall all the way down.  One thing I would have done differently would be to lengthen the pouch—it’s meant to be accessed by the opposite arm across the front of the body, but it sits a little far back for this.  I have yet to playtest this, but I also might have difficulty using the pouch while wearing my leather clamshell gauntlets.  If I had more fabric available, I would have also made the outside of the pouch wider than the inside, giving the final product a U silhouette instead of a flat/stuffed silhouette.  However, this change might interfere with the gravity-feeding “mechanism”.

The feature “acorn” motif was made up on the spot, utilizing the leather scraps available to me.  The green leather helps it stand out, being brown on red and all.  As a Kender Knight of Hylo: the Order of the Acorn, it is a sacred symbol for my people.  Ek’thik allus mot durnat–goodness is best!

If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading!  I hope this post inspires you to make something new.

 

-Fyaren Windseed Applereach the Tall, Order of the Acorn, Knight errant of Drentha and Ally of Squirrels

About the author: Fyaren Windseed Applereach