August 11, 2011

Beltmaking - Buckles

Please note that as of March 2015, my online shop closed and these belt and buckle kits are no longer available. Sadly, I do not have another source for them at this time. Thank you so much!

For my beltmaking series, I thought it would be good to get a feel for all of the elements of a belt, so to start I'll be going through the tools you'll need to make a stellar belt - beginning with the most fun - buckles! Aren't buckles just the best? They are like the eye candy for your belt. You can go basic, fabric covered, bling it up and so on and so forth. There are so many belt buckles out there to choose from these days. If you've decided to tackle making your own belt for a particular project, you've got something of a candy store waiting for you. Here's some ideas:

Hand Cover Buckles

Hand Cover Buckles
Hand Cover Buckles are so much fun to play around with and make your very own. Reminiscent of vintage dressmaking, these can be made up in the same or contrasting fabric as your dress. They add a bit of nostalgia and texture to finish off a fun vintage sewing pattern. Hand Cover Buckles are typically found in Belt and Buckle kits and also as Buckle kits which do not include the belt backing or eyelets for making a covered belt. They have a metal top and bottom and come with a double sided sticky transfer pattern that allows you to cut and notch the fabric in a way that will perfectly match the buckle. Also usually included is an optional prong for use in belts with eyelets.

Premade Buckles

Pre-made Buckles
These are premade and ready to go. No fuss and very sturdy. Sometimes with prongs and sometimes without (usually called a buckle slide). Generally you can find a selection of buckles at your local fabric store (usually chain stores) or you can even go shopping on Etsy or Ebay for genuine vintage articles. I have a sweet little selection of vintage buckles all ready for beltmaking joy! You can also get green and recycle old buckles or purchase belts for their buckles at your local thrift.

Clasp Buckles

Clasp Buckles
One of my favorites! I love clasp buckles. These are typically used in conjunction with an elastic belting. I've a small collection going of these as well. I've found a few at my local thrift (in the belts section) and at estate sales, where I've just salvaged the buckle since the belt was in such sad condition.  Keep your eyes peeled for these treasures too.

Buckles are fun to mix and match with different fabrics and elements. Let your imagination run wild! Start a stash and begin collecting some of your favorites. Do you have a buckle collection? Do share some of your finds and tips with us!
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