Tutorials

 
Tool Belt
Crafty Tool Belt

If you're a crafter of any kind, you know that there are times you really wish you had lots of arms. One to hold folds, another to pin, another to hold a scissors, and if you're me, another to hold a camera. What you really need is something handy and cool to keep all your crafty implements close at hand and off your cluttered table where they're sure to get lost. Lucky for us, that thing has already been invented... it's called a tool belt! We just need to craft it up to our particular needs.

To make your tool belt, you'll need:

  • Fabric for the case

  • Belt with grommets (if you want to attach it to one, you could also just clip it to belt loops)

  • Some colorful bias tape

  • Felt

  • Metal clips

  • Scissors and pins

  • Cutaway stabilizer


Let's start with your fabric. How large you make your holder is up to you. If you want to make yours like mine, you can follow my measurements. You'll take a piece of fabric about 17 inches high and 12 inches wide. Fold it like shown so about 7 inches of it is overlapping. This will be the pocket for our tools.

Every good crafty belt needs some crafty embroidery, like this button cluster! Hoop up your fabric with some stabilizer. The best place to add some embroidery is on the pocket, off to one side. I put mine so it will be on the left side of the pocket pouch once it's finished. Unhoop it after it's done stitching and cut away the excess stabilizer. Now that you have your top piece of fabric, lay it on your fabric and cut out another rectangle exactly the same size. Set these aside for now.


We're going to need some straps to attach our nifty clasps to. Take a piece of your fabric, and cut a strip about 3 inches by 6 inches. Fold it in on itself, and sew a seam down both sides to make a finished strap. Do this twice so you have two straps.

To secure your clips in place, wrap one of your straps around the clasp, and sew a seam directly underneath it so the clips don't move around. Do this on both.

Now, it's time to place our straps! If you have a grommet belt like mine, you're going to want to place your straps right beneath some of the holes so it clips in nice and neat. Lay out your belt, and place the straps so they line up properly.


Now, we need everything inside out, so it's right side out when we're done. Place the two rectangles of fabric right sides together, and carefully turn the clasps so they're facing inside, making sure not to move their alignment. Pin them in place like shown.

Sew a seam down three sides of your rectangle, taking extra care when you stitch over your straps, leaving the top side (nearest the embroidery) open for turning. We'll finish it off with bias tape.

Turn your rectangle right side out and push out the corners. You may want to press it flat with an iron as well. Take some bias tape, and fold it over the raw edge at the top.

Pin your bias tape in place, folding the edges under at the sides. Sew a seam to secure it in place and finish the edge.


Now that your edges are finished and your clasps are in place, fold your pocket over again, up about 7 inches. We're going to mark out where we want our pockets to go. Take some pins and mark out where you'd like to make them. I'd recommend making a nice large pocket where you added the embroidery and dividing up the rest, as you see fit, to the tools you have: scissors, pens, pins, brushes, etc.

As well as the large pocket panels, we can add some smaller pockets and goodies on top before we stitch it all together. I made a small pocket by sewing and turning a rectangle, and cut out a small square of felt that's perfect for holding pins and needles. Size these to the width of the pockets you've marked out.

Stitch your pockets and holders in place. Sew a seam down three sides of your rectangle to make a pocket, and all the way around your felt piece to secure the pin holder. If that's all the goodies you want to add to the front, let's finish this!


Pin the sides of the pocket in place to make sure it won't shift while you're sewing, then sew a seam all the way around your holder, securing the pocket in place and adding a finished seam to all edges.

Finally, it's time to sew the seams of all your pockets. Carefully sew a line where you've marked your pocket lines with pins, starting just at the top of the bias tape.

Sew down all your lines 'til your pockets are done.


Clip your holder to your belt, and you've got a hip and easy way to keep all your crafty goodies in one easy reachable place. Plus, if you don't want to wear it around your waist, you can unclip the holder from your belt and use it as a tool organizer on your desk. When you're finished, clip it back on and you've got a kit to go!


Some button embroidery shows of your crafty style, and you can place all kinds of things in it depending on your crafty needs! Small pockets are perfect for pens and brushes, larger ones fit scissors and tubes of glue. My little front pocket perfectly fits my little scissors, or some bobbins, and the little pocket of felt is a great pin or needle holder for all those pins you lose otherwise.
 

Not only are you now handy, but you're rocking a hardcore crafty style! Show it off around your studio or waltz around with it on like it's your Batman utility belt. After all, Batman never went anywhere without his belt. Where would you be if you were caught unawares without a scissors and a seam ripper? You wouldn't be as cool as Batman, would you?



From minimalist and basic to fancy and frilly, a crafty tool belt can easily be adapted to any style ... and accented with some rad embroidery, of course! Check out a few variations: Rachel keeps it simple while making a cute pocketed apron out of a vintage sheet. Kerri adds flirty pleats to the front of her crafty tool belt. And Colleen at The Magic Bean shares a pattern for a crafty apron with approximately a bajillion pockets.
 


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Suggested designs for this tutorial: 
Button Cluster_image
Button Cluster $3.99 - $4.99
2 Available Sizes:
Machine Embroidery: 4.29"w x 4.37"h | 2.76"w x 2.80"h | Hand Embroidery