Wedding files: DIY satin belt

belt-closeup

My wedding dress fit well off the rack, except it really needed some waist definition.

bhldn-lace-no-sash

So I bought a spool of 2″ wide polyester satin ribbon from Jo-Ann Fabrics and tied it into a sash.

2014-01-18-winner

It pulled in the waist really well! But the trailing ends didn’t quite mesh with this style of dress, or at least my personal taste. It needed something more polished and tailored. So I decided to turn the sash into a belt.

belt

Want to make a satin belt of your own? I didn’t take photos of the process, but if you have basic hand-sewing skills and remember to try on the belt periodically throughout the process, you’ll hopefully find my notes easy enough to follow.

You’ll need:

  • A length of satin ribbon (your waist size plus several inches)
  • A length of medium or heavy weight fusible interfacing
  • A hook and bar, or a few hooks and eyes
  • Thread that matches the ribbon
  • A hand-sewing needle
  • An iron with a steam setting
  • A press cloth (scrap fabric to keep interfacing goo off your iron)

Here’s how:

  1. Choose your length:
    • Hold the ribbon snug around your waist where the belt should sit.
    • Place a pin to mark the point where the end overlaps.
    • Add 4″ past the pin and then trim the ribbon.
  2. Strengthen your belt:
    • Make a mark or place a pin 2″ from one end, and 1″ from the other.
    • Cut a piece of interfacing the length you have marked (you are leaving the ends un-interfaced), and slightly narrower than the ribbon width.
    • Apply the interfacing to the back side of the ribbon between your marks, following the package directions.
  3. Attach the hook:
    • Fold the shorter end in half so that the raw edge meets the interfacing.
    • Fold over again so the raw edge is enclosed.
    • Sew around all four sides of the folded part with a running stitch.
    • Place the hook on the front of the belt toward the very edge, with the hook part pointing toward the rest of the belt.
    • Attach the hook by stitching through all three layers. The stitches on the back will be against your dress, so they won’t be visible.
  4. Attach the bar:
    • Fold the longer end in half so that the raw edge meets the interfacing, and pin in place.
    • Place the bar at the center of the folded part, on the front side of the ribbon.
    • Attach the bar by stitching through both layers of ribbon. The interfaced part is not involved yet.
    • Fold the ribbon over again so the raw edge is enclosed and your stitches are hidden.
    • Sew around all four sides of the folded part with a running stitch.
  5. Try on your new belt!

Final thoughts and tips:

  • Consider adding more length to the bar end, and sewing on two bars an inch apart. This will allow you to loosen the belt after dinner! I actually planned to do this, but mistakenly didn’t account for enough ribbon to cover the hook. You can see in the top photo that my bar had to be attached at least a half inch from the end so the hook didn’t peek out.
  • When you’re ready to wear it, consider basting (attaching with temporary stitches) the belt to your dress at a few key points. The interfacing made my belt a bit grippy on the back, but it still shifted upward quite a bit as I wore it, and I had to keep tugging it into place.
  • If you’d like to cover the overlapping part, consider adding a bow. Tilly and the Buttons has a great bow belt tutorial. You can wear the bow either in front or in back.
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One thought on “Wedding files: DIY satin belt

  1. Pingback: 15 Awesome DIY Wedding Belts & Sashes Ideas - Paris Ciel (EN)

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