Learning how to make lanyards will ensure you will never lose your keys again. The lanyard goes around your neck and can hold multiple things, such as an ID or keys. It is a great way to ensure your keys are always handy – assuming your work in an environment where you need to use keys all the time, but you can also keep your home keys around your neck to avoid losing them. While most people choose to buy lanyards in their favorite colors, with their favorite sports teams or characters, you can now make your own.
Lanyards are easy to make and do not require any experience. You will not need a sewing tutorial or any sophisticated materials = simply get a fabric in your favorite style (or more, if you want to make a few different lanyards) and get to work. The process should take less than half an hour.
How To Make Lanyards – What Do You Need To Make A Lanyard?
You will need a few different things to make sure your lanyards are perfect. Most of them are readily available around the house. Making a lanyard is usually straightforward.
Get some fabric – your favorite color, pattern or texture. Most people rely on a fabric strip of cotton. Make sure you have a rotary cutter too, as well as a ruler – preferably, a clear one. A cutting mat will help in the process. Other than that, take your steam iron out and some sewing clips. If you do not have any, you might as well use straight pins. Matching thread will be needed too, not to mention a swivel snap hook or simply a key ring.
It goes without saying that you will need a sewing machine. While you can sew manually, a sewing machine will make your life easier. The fabric strip will look better too – this is not one of those sophisticated sewing projects, but the machine will make it faster and more precise. Finally, fusible interfacing is also a must.
Learn How To Make A Lanyard – Start By Cutting The Fabric
Every fabric lanyard tutorial out there will involve cutting the fabric in the optimal size. The fabric strip will most likely have to measure a couple of inches in width and about 44 inches in length. The cut should be straight and neat. This is when you will need the cutting mat, ruler and cutter. You can adjust the length by a couple of inches – depending on how low you want the lanyard to hang.
Keep in mind that the width of the fabric will not make the final result. Instead, it will be four times thinner. If you want a different width, simply determine the requirements for the final result and multiply by four. For instance, if you want to make lanyard about an inch wide, the fabric should be four inches wide.
Bring The Interfacing In
The interfacing may look irrelevant – you could skip it. But then, your lanyard will fold and will not look too solid. Moreover, fusible interfacing is extremely helpful in the long run. If you want your lanyard to last, make sure you do not skip this step. Plus, if you are into sewing, you will find interfacing useful in many other projects – such as handbags.
All in all, the interfacing will need to be cut too. It must be smaller than the actual fabric strip. In terms of width, leave it about an eighth of an inch smaller on each side. As for the length, it should be half an each shorter at every end.
The interfacing can then be attached. Different types of interfacing must be attached in different ways. Make sure you follow the instructions on the packaging. Given the length of the lanyard, you may not be able to find such long interfacing – nothing to worry about. Simply use more strips until you reach the desired length.
Fold The Fabric
This is one of the most important parts in the tutorial. If you fold the fabric the wrong way, you can always get back – but chances are it will be wrinkled, so your tutorial will not be that clear. Start with the width. Fold the fabric in half lengthwise. Do it slowly to ensure everything is straight. As you fold, press along it to keep the unit in place.
Again, the fabric will be a bit longer than the interfacing, so it should hang outside. Grab the outside edge on each side, then fold it towards the center. Press in as you do it. Perform this step for each side. Ideally, you should have the same distance on each side, so the whole thing will look symmetrical.
Once you are done, fold everything in half lengthwise again. This is what your lanyard will look like – the final result. Of course, there are still a few steps to go through in order to ensure it stays in place.
Hem The Ends
This is the step where you get everything ready before using the sewing machine. You want to ensure everything is right, so take your time to analyze each part. During this step, you will also have to hem the ends. The short ends should be around half an inch. Fold them towards the middle of the lanyard – where the interfacing is over. Press the fold then. Fold back together again and use a pin to hold everything in place.
You will have to follow the exact same steps for the other end.
Take more pins out – or sewing clips – and make sure the lanyard stays in place. Altogether, you will need about 12 to 15 pins for a 40 inch long lanyard – set them at the same distance one from another. Their primary role is to hold the lanyard together.
Sewing Tutorial – Get The Lanyard Done
This step will require putting the lanyard together. You must be very careful, as you want a perfectly straight line for the sewing. While you could do it manually, a sewing machine will do a better job. It is up to you to choose the perfect stitch or the thread color – most people rely on matching colors. Also, the straight stitch is classic and probably the easiest to use.
Stitch each side of the lanyard lengthwise. Try to do it close to the edge – ideally, it should be the same distance on each side. As for the seam allowance, an eighth of an inch is usually more than enough.
Attach The Metallic Parts
This part is usually straightforward and intuitive. However, a bit of lack of common sense will ruin everything you have done so far so try to visualize everything before doing it. Get the swivel snap hook – basically, the lanyard should go through it. It is important to keep the clip on the outside of your lanyard. You can add a keyring as well – slip it on the other end. It makes no difference what orientation you want, as it will rotate anyway.
Fold the lanyard in half. You should do it in an inside out way. Ends must meet – use a sewing clip or even binder clips to keep them together. Ensure the lanyard is straight and has not twisted meanwhile. Sew these ends together – the seam allowance should be around a fourth of an inch.
Finally, turn the lanyard right side out. Basically, go where the ends are sewn together and pull that end towards the inside. To keep it simple, place your lanyard on a table and try to come up with a heart shape. The sewn part should be at the top, where the two halves meet. Now, reduce the size of each half until the round parts at the end are tiny loops. One of these folds should have the key ring, while the other one should have the swivel snap hook.
Sew both straps together and the metallic hardware will be trapped in there.
Frequently Asked Questions
Still unsure about one thing or another regarding lanyards? There are more ways to learn how to make lanyard and each of them is pretty intuitive. Small adjustments are also accepted if you want some extra embellishments or you want to simplify the job.
What fabric is used to make lanyards?
Cotton is one of the most common materials out there, but not the only one. Nylon is pretty common in lanyards too, not to mention polyester.
How do you make a no sew lanyard?
While you can leave the sewing behind, the long fabric strip must still be put together in one way or another. Therefore, you may have to glue it. You can also use metallic elements and simply clamp it.
How do you make a lanyard for a key?
The above mentioned steps will teach you how to make lanyards. The purpose depends on you, as well as the metallic hardware you use in the last steps. You can use various attachments for keys, but you can also use other things to hold IDs, for example.
Bottom line, learning how to make lanyards is not that difficult. There are more ways to move around and you can always improvise. Make sure you sew everything together or fabrics will go loose overtime. This is by far the most important part in the process. As for the size and design, they depend on your personal preferences.