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ADJUSTABLE SHOULDER STRAPS

In this tutorial I am going to show you how to make an adjustable shoulder strap suitable for any type of shoulder or messenger bag.

This tutorial is aimed at making a detachable strap, but is just as applicable to fixed straps as well.  I will point out the differences at the relevant instructions.

WHAT YOU NEED…



Detachable strap
  •     2 metres of Cotton webbing – width your choice
  •     2 swivel snap hooks to match width of webbing (Item 1)
  •     1 Slider to match the width of the webbing (Item 2)
  •     2 Two hole triangle rings to match width of webbing (Item 3)
Fixed strap
  •     2 metres of Cotton webbing – width your choice
  •     1 Slider to match the width of the webbing (item 2)
  •     2 Rectangle rings to match width of webbing (item 4)

 MAIN STRAP…

1) Cut 1.6 metres of webbing.

2) Thread the Slider onto the Webbing by approx. 2 1/2″ (65-70mm) and fold the end over.  Make sure that the Slider is orientated the correct way round as shown in figure 1.




FIGURE 1

3) Mark approx. 1″ (25mm) from the end of the folded piece using tailors chalk or a disappearing pen.  This will be the top of the main stitching pattern.  See figure 2.



FIGURE 2

4) Starting level with your mark, and about 3mm in from the edge, sew the pattern shown in figure 3.  Go over each line 3-4 times to ensure the strength of the joint.



FIGURE 3

5) Feed a Snap Hook (or rectangle ring if making the fixed strap) onto the free end of the Webbing so that the hook is on the opposite side to the folded over end.  Then feed the Webbing through the Slider as shown in figure 4.




FIGURE 4

6) Take the second Snap Hook (or Rectangle Ring) and feed on to the free end of the Webbing by approx. 2 1/2″ (65-70mm).  Fold over so that the end is in towards what will be the inside of the strap.  Mark and sew as per steps 3 & 4.  See figure 5.




FIGURE 5

JOINING THE STRAP TO THE BAG…


You have two choices on how to fix the strap anchor points to the bag.

Method 1 – External

This is probably the easiest of the two methods.

Cut two lengths of Webbing  6″ (150mm) long. Thread through the Triangle Ring (or Rectangle Ring joined to the strap, if making the fixed strap) and fold as shown in figure 6.




FIGURE 6

This is done to hide the raw ends of the Webbing.  Place onto the bag in the required position with the folded sections against the fabric.  Sew on using the same pattern as Step 4 above.  It is important to ensure that the sewing pattern covers both of the folded sections.  The closer you can sew the top line of stitching to the ring the better, as this will help to prevent the ring  from twisting when under load.  Repeat for the opposite end.




Finished external strap


Method 2 – Internal


Using this method the strap anchor points will be incorporated into the top seams of the bag.

Cut two lengths of Webbing  6″ (150mm) long. Thread through the Triangle Ring (or Rectangle Ring joined to the strap, if making the fixed strap) and fold in half as shown in figure 7.




FIGURE 7

The advantage of using this method is that the raw ends of the anchor point will be hidden in between the bag layers.

Insert the Webbing into the seam in the required position and sew around in the normal way.  Depending on the size/weight of the bag that you are making it may also be necessary to sew the tails of the anchor to the bag outer layer using the pattern from Step 4 above.  This can be seen in the picture below.




Finished internal anchor point

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